The Government of Western Australia has awarded a contract to Ertech to complete the third stage of the South Coast Highway upgrades in Kojaneerup.

As part of the contract, a road stretch between Bluff Creek and Kojaneerup West Road will be upgraded with the construction of two passing lanes, as well as road widening and road reconstruction.

Western Australia Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said: “Improvements along South Coast Highway are taking shape, creating local jobs and opportunities for local businesses.

“As well as upgrading South Coast Highway, we have also started works on the long-awaited Albany Highway, as well as A$13m being spent to upgrade sections of Albany Highway.

“This is just part of a job-creating, road upgrades package worth almost A$220m we have rolled out across the Great Southern Region.”

Construction on the A$30m project is expected to begin next month and be completed by around May 2021.

During the construction phase, the project is expected to create nearly 150 employment opportunities in the region.

The first stage of South Coast Highway upgrade was completed in June last year and saw the construction of a westbound passing lane approximately 2.5km west of Kalgan River Bridge, as well as pavement widening from 7m to 11m between Kilarney Road and Monty’s Leap Winery.

This April, the second stage of the upgrade was completed, which included pavement widening from 7m to 11m between Monty’s Leap Winery and the Kalgan River Bridge.

Albany MLA Peter Watson said: “Upgrading South Coast Highway was one of my key election commitments and I’m so proud we are now at Stage Three.

“Completion of the third stage, and the overall program, will provide safer travelling opportunities, and improve transport efficiencies for everyone in our Great Southern Region.

“The construction of the passing lanes will benefit many commuters, given the area experiences a mix of tourist traffic and heavy vehicles.”

Last May, the state government of Western Australia allocated around A$4.2bn in its budget for various road infrastructure and maintenance initiatives.