VIDEO: NorthConnex has West Pennant Hills mum worried

MOTHER of three Daniella Abdow said she’s ‘‘burning’’ over news a ventilation stack will be built metres away from her West Pennant Hills home.

The stack is part of the new $3 billion North Connex project announced by Prime Minister Tony Abbott and Premier Barry O’Farrell on Sunday.

The southern ventilation stack would be metres away from Graeme Scott's home on nearby Gum Grove Place.

That’s when she found out the tunnel and stack would be going ahead too.

‘‘One of my children has asthma,’’ Ms Abdow, of Gum Grove Place, said.

‘‘I’m worried about air quality and the noise it will bring.’’

Her family has lived there nine years.

‘‘I still don’t know where it’s going exactly and whether they’ll [NorthConnex] be using part of our land,’’ Ms Adbow said with reference to bushland her property backs onto.

The ventilation stack near her — on the Cumberland Highway/Pennant Hills Road interchange — is one of two outlets identified in the NorthConnex twin tunnel project linking the M2 and M1 (formerly the F3).

A northern stack is proposed for Wahroonga.

Ms Abdow lives in Ward C of Hornsby Council.

The Hills and Ku-ring-gai council areas will also be affected by the new motorway tunnel.

Yet none of the four coming community consultations organised by NorthConnex will be held in The Hills.

The closest will be at Pennant Hills Golf Club on March 26.

Not that Ms Abdow thinks it’s worth going.

‘‘I went to the last community meeting in October — you could get it online what they were giving you,’’ she said.

The project is now in the planning approval phase with Lend Lease and Boygues joining forces with Transurban to design and construct this motorway link.

Construction will begin next year, with the tunnel expected to open in 2019.

The federal government is contributing $405 million to the $3 billion project which will deliver twin nine-kilometre tunnels with a capacity for three lanes of traffic each way.

The Hills mayor Michelle Byrne said the NSW government would brief her councillors and senior staff in the coming weeks.

The Hills Council, Hornsby Council, Mitchell MP Alex Hawke and Berowra MP Philip Ruddock have all welcomed NorthConnex.

Hornsby mayor Steve Russell said his council had campaigned for it for a long time.

“The benefits are countless: our roads will be safer, our neighbourhoods will be quieter and our air will be cleaner,’’ Cr Russell said.

But Cr Byrne and Mr Hawke argue NorthConnex will improve air quality.

‘‘Residents and businesses will feel like they finally have their streets back and air pollution will decrease,” Cr Byrne said.

The twin motorway tunnels will avoid 40 sets of traffic lights on the Pacific Highway to the CBD, he said.

Mayor Michelle Byrne agreed the 9km twin tunnels would have a very positive impact on The Hills and Hornsby roads and provide ‘‘a more direct link with the Hawkesbury River and Central Coast, bypassing 21 sets of a traffic lights in the process”.

“I also think the government has shown great judgement in forcing trucks to use the tunnel unless delivering goods locally,’’ Cr Byrne said.

Mr Ruddock said: ‘‘The ease of traffic congestion will be tremendous, with estimates that up to 5000 trucks a day will come off Pennant Hills Road, with vehicles using the tunnel able to bypass 21 sets of traffic lights.’’

Mr Hawke said the new motorway tunnel would also reduce noise for residents and businesses that border the corridor, increase the efficiency of freight movements and improve safety.

Click here for more on NorthConnex.

Upcoming community consultations:

■ Wednesday, March 26, 7pm-9pm: Pennant Hills Golf Club, corner Copeland and Burns South roads, Beecroft;

■ Thursday, March 27, 7pm-9pm:  Hornsby RSL Club showroom, 4 High Street, Hornsby;

■ Thursday, April 3, 7pm-9pm: Pennant Hills Golf Club function room, corner Copeland and Burns South roads, Beecroft; and

■ Saturday, April 5, 2pm-4pm: Pennant Hills Community Centre main hall, corner Yararra and Ramsay roads, Pennant Hills.

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