New highway signage aims to promote Ballina
IT'S been more than eight years since the Ballina bypass first opened, and signage is about to be installed on the upgraded Pacific Highway to show the services available in Ballina.
The Ballina signs will be installed on Thursday and Friday, while other signs will be installed near Urunga and Woolgoolga from this week.
But if you're thinking a billboard showcasing Ballina, think again.
The Ballina signs feature an aerial photograph of the mouth of the Richmond River.
And using the philosophy that a picture tells 1000 words, the other elements of the sign are simply icons for the services in town - dining, 24-hour fuel, hospital tourism information and accommodation.
Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said the signs would be installed under the NSW Government's commitment to boost regional economies.
"The Pacific Highway upgrade is the largest regional road infrastructure project in Australia and is transforming journeys along the North Coast," Mr Toole said.
"The upgrade will reduce travel times by 2.5 hours between Hexham and the Queensland border but we still want tourist dollars being spent in regional towns where possible.
"That's why we're delivering on our election commitment to install these signs which will outline what services or tourist attractions are on offer.
"These signs are the largest directional signs in NSW, and will be installed on the highway at both the northbound and southbound approaches to the town."
Nationals Member of the Legislative Council, Ben Franklin, said Transport for NSW had worked with the local council to develop the preferred images for the signs.
"These signs have been popular in other locations, driving more visitors to regional towns and tempting them to explore what they have to offer," Mr Franklin said.
"The Ballina signs will showcase its beautiful location at the mouth of the Richmond River."