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New England Highway - Singleton Bypass

The New England Highway currently runs through Singleton, providing access to the town center and the rest of the town. Every day, approximately 28,000 cars pass through Singleton, including over 3,700 heavy vehicles. The coal mining industry, commuters, and heavy vehicles have all been cited as key drivers to traffic growth in recent years. As a result of population growth, prospective land projects in and around Singleton, and a general increase in freight transit across the region, traffic volumes are expected to climb even further.

Transport for NSW (TfNSW, also commonly known as RMS) proposes to build a bypass of Singleton on the New England Highway. The plan is to build a two-lane motorway bypass west of Singleton. The project is located 75 kilometers inland from Newcastle, 47 kilometers south-east of Muswellbrook, and 200 kilometers north of Sydney in the Hunter Valley's Singleton local government area.

As with most projects, TfNSW will have to acquire a number of properties to make way for the Bypass of Singleton under the Land Acquisition (Just Terms Compensation) Act 1991. Property owners affected by the compulsory acquisitions for the Singleton Bypass are entitled to compensation and the amount of compensation is subject to many factors. It is advisable to have legal representation to understand the amount of acquisition compensation that you may be entitled to. Compensation for road widening usually involves compensation for the loss of the land taken, and in addition for the decrease in value of the land that is left. For instance, usually with road widening many houses will lose land to the front of the homes. The result of this is that the new roadway is closer to their home, thereby giving a claim for compensation in the reduced value of the home. The law allows for costs as well usually such as double glazing in order to minimize the impact of the new road on the home.

The RMS are also responsible to reinstate any walls and boundary fencing, as well as lost trees. Sometimes this will be done outside of the compensation payment by way of what is called a property adjustment. The RMS will usually work with the owners of the land at the time of the work being done to ensure that the new boundary is adequately protected and fenced from the new road. Compensation for partial land acquisitions can be more complex that where all of the land is acquired as it involves careful consideration of what the impact will be in the future so expert valuation advise is required. Commonly cases will also involve town planners or other experts such as acoustic experts. Always use an expert in land acquisition as the Act will also cover the legal costs for doing so.

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