Motorway Link - former alignment of National Highway 1

Looking north to the Tooheys Rd interchange, October 2004.

Lifespan: 1983-88 (5 years as National Highway 1), 1988-present (as State Route 111)

Length: 7km

Southern Terminus: F3 Freeway, Wallarah Creek Interchange

Northern Terminus: Pacific Hwy, Doyalson

RTA Internal Classification: Main Road 675

Focal Points: Sydney, Newcastle

NH1 replaced by: State Route 111 in March 1988

Opened to traffic: December 1983

Route Overview:

Motorway Link is a 7km super-2 expressway connecting the F3 Freeway to the dual carriageway Pacific Hwy at Doyalson. It was constructed as part of the Kangy Angy-Doyalson stage of the F3, acting as temporary expressway for 5 years until the freeway was opened to Freemans Drive. Upon opening in December 1983, Motorway Link gained the National Highway 1 shield and kept it until March 1988 when National Highway 1 bypassed Newcastle for the first time. State Route 111 was the designated replacement route which usurped all of National Route 1's former alignment through Newcastle.

Motorway Link was constructed initially with no at-grade intersections and a diamond interchange provided at the unsealed Tooheys Rd which serviced the quarries and brewery that once were there. This interchange was initially signposted to Wyee, prior to the opening of the Sparks Rd (Warnervale) interchange in December 1986. During 1987 most of the signposting was removed, leaving only 6 ID signs for this lowly trafficed interchange. It is somewhat of a forgotten interchange amongst the RTA, the signposting being left untouched for over 15 years until the RTA decided to replaced signs on the mainline. Off the exit, two black painted NH1 ID's still exist to this day.

Following the boom in housing development during the late 1980's and early 1990's the expressway nature of Motorway Link was compromised with the construction of Blue Haven Way as an access to the new suburb, Blue Haven. Also, traffic signals were installed at the intersection with Pacific Hwy as traffic volumes climbed higher and higher during the late 1990's. Northbound SR111 traffic still is able to bypass the lights but must merge to one lane.

Photos of Motorway Link
One of the 2 remaining National Highway 1 shields on Motorway Link. This pic was taken in October 2004 at the Tooheys Rd interchange.
The other remaining NH1 sign on the back of the above sign. This is a 1983 original and the standard green (black) painted background indicates that Motorway Link was not intended to be a full freeway. Photo taken October 2004.
This RD sign southbound from Tooheys Rd interchange shows NH1 also, but it is not an original. It is reasonable that NH1 appears on the sign since you cant go anywhere but onto the freeway from here, however an 'END SR111' topknot would be nice. Photo taken December 2003.
Southbound AD sign approaching Blue Haven Way. Photo taken December 2003.
Looking south at Thomson Vale Rd and across Spring Ck and the Newcastle Railway Line. Photo taken October 2004.
Looking south at Tooheys Rd interchange. Photo taken October 2004.
Looking south under Tooheys Rd overpass. Note the space on the left for a second carriageway beneath the bridge. Photo taken October 2004.
Northbound ID sign for the Tooheys Rd interchange. Note the dodgy tape over what used to say 'EXIT/Wyee'. This sign has since been replaced. Photo taken December 2003.
Southbound ID sign for the Tooheys Rd interchange. This sign has since been replaced. Photo taken December 2003.

Back to F3 Freeway
Back to National Highway 1
Back to State Route 111