Harry Graham Drive Upgrades - Kembla Heights

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Project has been completed and Harry Graham Drive is open

Wongawilli Road looking east

As part of Council’s commitment to improving our roads and keeping them safe, we’re planning significant upgrades along Harry Graham Drive. The works will reduce the risk of rocks falling onto the road and will help stabilise an area around Brandy and Water Creek.

Works and road closures - March to July 2022

To carry out the works, we need to close a section of the road near the works area for approximately 4 months between March - July 2022. Due to the nature of the works and the narrow road, it isn’t possible to keep the road open to normal traffic. We understand this will inconvenience our community and don’t take the decision lightly. We’re aiming to complete the works as quickly as we can, whilst ensuring the highest safety standards are being used.

You can sign up to receive email updates about the project or take a look at the latest in our news feed below.

For background on the project, please view the Frequently Asked Questions, Documents, Important Links and Photos on this page.

For further information: Email: engagement@wollongong.nsw.gov.au or Call: (02) 4227 7111

If you’re Deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment, you can contact us through the National Relay Service. If you need an interpreter you can contact us through the Translating and Interpreting Service on 131 450. You’ll need to provide our phone number (02) 4227 7111 for either service.

Before you sign up please read Council's Privacy Policy.

As part of Council’s commitment to improving our roads and keeping them safe, we’re planning significant upgrades along Harry Graham Drive. The works will reduce the risk of rocks falling onto the road and will help stabilise an area around Brandy and Water Creek.

Works and road closures - March to July 2022

To carry out the works, we need to close a section of the road near the works area for approximately 4 months between March - July 2022. Due to the nature of the works and the narrow road, it isn’t possible to keep the road open to normal traffic. We understand this will inconvenience our community and don’t take the decision lightly. We’re aiming to complete the works as quickly as we can, whilst ensuring the highest safety standards are being used.

You can sign up to receive email updates about the project or take a look at the latest in our news feed below.

For background on the project, please view the Frequently Asked Questions, Documents, Important Links and Photos on this page.

For further information: Email: engagement@wollongong.nsw.gov.au or Call: (02) 4227 7111

If you’re Deaf or have a hearing or speech impairment, you can contact us through the National Relay Service. If you need an interpreter you can contact us through the Translating and Interpreting Service on 131 450. You’ll need to provide our phone number (02) 4227 7111 for either service.

Before you sign up please read Council's Privacy Policy.

Project has been completed and Harry Graham Drive is open

  • Harry Graham Drive to reopen

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    One of the city’s key east-west links will reopen next week after extensive works to stabilise the road and repair it after Wollongong’s wild weather earlier this year.

    Harry Graham Drive, a valued access road that provides a link between Mount Kembla and Mount Keira Road and Clive Bissell Drive, was closed in March after parts of the road cracked and fell away during the heavy rain.

    With work already planned for the road, Council was able to fast-track the additional road repairs and the install rock fall fencing.

    “Harry Graham Drive has long been a challenging road for Council as it’s particularly susceptible to movement, particularly following heavy rains, due to its underlying geology,’’ Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM said.

    “In this case, we had already planned to undertake some works on this road over the winter months so that the road would be operational for the 2022/2023 bushfire season and, following the 700mm-plus volume of rain in the first three months of the year, we needed to add emergency works to the schedule.

    “The escarpment is continually eroding and presenting geotechnical challenges especially after the massive rainfall events like those in the first half of this year. The latest work on Harry Graham Drive will cost more than $2.4M to stabilise and resurface.’’

    The original works brief was to carry out embankment stabilisation using shotcrete and rock bolts and install a rock-catch fence.

    After all the heavy rain events earlier in the year further repairs were required including stabilising sections of the road using large metal sheets piles that were driven deep into the ground and capped with a concrete capping beam as well as extensive vegetation clean up, reshaping numerous landslides and repairing drainage structures. These works were completed under emergency works provisions.

    “We know Harry Graham Drive is important to our community and its significance was very apparent earlier this year as the weather impacted all the roads up the escarpment,’’ Wollongong City Council General Manager Greg Doyle said.

    “We saw a range of weather-related road issues along both Council and state-managed roads including on Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Bulli Pass, and Mount Ousley and Mount Keira roads.

    “This is a vulnerability for our city and puts us at risk of being cut off. It’s essential we maintain this road so that it provides an important access way for our community who use this road to travel up or down the escarpment.

    “I’m pleased we’ve been able to finish this phase of work ahead of the bushfire season.’’

    Council has also sought financial support through the Federal Government’s disaster recovery program to cover the costs of the works.

    “We do hear comment from our community that this project was all about the big bike race coming to the city in September,’’ Cr Bradbery said.

    “While there’s no doubt they are certainly planning to use the road for the race – and it will look spectacular seeing the riders pass through this area – this wasn’t a project for the race. This was about safe and easy access for our community.’’

    The road will reopen early next week once the last stages of works, including wrapping up drainage clearing, installation of signage and painting jersey barriers, have been completed.

  • Works continuing at Harry Graham Drive

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    supporting image

    These large metal sheets might look like an unusual roadside artwork but they’re in fact huge piles that’ll be pushed deep into the ground and help shore up Harry Graham Drive in Mount Kembla.

    Once the work’s finished you’ll not be able to see these essential engineering supports from the road, which will be trimmed to ground level and with a concrete capping beam.

    We’ve been working for some time to stabilise this challenging road, and to get Harry Graham Drive road reopened ahead of the 2022/2023 bushfire season. Other elements of the project includes the construction of a rock-catching fence embankment stabilisation works using shotcrete facing anchored with rock bolts. The recent wet weather has made it harder, with more land movement thanks to the recent huge rainfall totals.

    The good news is we’ve already put in 30 metres of this sheet piling and are on track to put in about another 150 metres more ahead of the road resurfacing! With good weather on our side, we’re hopeful of the road reopening in spring.

  • Harry Graham Drive Road Closure

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    Harry Graham Drive is now closed. Recent rain events have meant the road needed to be closed before the start of scheduled work. Construction on the upgrades will begin 17 March 2022. Completion of the project and reopening of the road is estimated to occur in August 2022.

    We understand this will be an inconvenience to our community and don’t take the decision lightly. Our aim is to complete the work as quickly as possible and ensure the highest safety standards are being used.


  • Harry Graham Drive Works Updates

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    We'll keep the community up to date with what is happening and how work is progressing