TRC round-a-bout sculpture scrapped
Safety ruling grounds ‘Taking Flight’ sculpture
The ‘Taking Flight’ sculpture proposed to be the centrepiece of Tamworth’s new Country Road Roundabout will no longer be installed following a Transport for NSW determination that the sculpture cannot be installed at that location due to a risk of driver distraction.
Located at the intersection of the Oxley Highway and Country Road, the new dual-lane roundabout with five exits is expected to be completed in September 2022, weather permitting.
The recent Transport for NSW decision received by Tamworth Regional Council states that they “have concern with this actual proposed sculpture from both a driver distraction and safety concern.”
Following Transport for NSW’s recent decision, Council is currently reviewing options for the centre of the new Country Road Roundabout, which will likely now involve additional landscape planting. The intersection will now also be considered as part of Council’s City Entrance Strategy Project, which is underway. Initial community consultation workshops for the strategy were held in late 2021.
Tamworth Region Mayor Russell Webb said that the recent decision was a disappointing one.
“Due to the roundabout's location at the entrance to the Tamworth Global Gateway Park and also to the city of Tamworth from the west and the airport, the roundabout was the perfect location to create a statement representing Tamworth's identity as a centre of innovation and future growth”, he said.
The concept ‘Taking Flight’ was chosen following an Expressions of Interest process, and endorsement by both the Tamworth Region Arts Advisory Committee (TRAAC) and Council in March and April 2021. Inspired by the delta “V” formation in which both birds and jets fly, the chosen design for the sculpture aimed to depict the connection between the Tamworth Global Gateway Park, Tamworth's landscape and the Tamworth Regional Airport.
The Country Road Roundabout has been funded with $4,532,000 from the Australian Government under its Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program, $4,056,800 from the NSW Government under its Restart NSW Growing Local Economies Fund and $954,200 from Tamworth Regional Council.