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Penola Northern Bypass Project

Project Overview

The Penola Northern Bypass formed part of a commitment to deliver a complete bypass of the Penola Township, which was a joint initiative of the Australian and South Australian governments and the Wattle Range Council.

This $14.6 million project was jointly funded with the Australian Government contributing $11.7 million and the South Australian Government providing the remaining $2.9 million. The Wattle Range Council also contributed, funding the property acquisition requirements for the bypass.

It is a continuation of the Penola Southern Bypass, from Robe Road to the Riddoch Highway, just north of the Penola Township.

The project included:

  • Construction of a new 2.2 kilometre undivided, sealed rural arterial road with sealed shoulders.
  • Construction of a T-junction at the Riddoch Highway (Church Street) where the new Northern Bypass connects to the Highway to the north of the Penola township.
  • Upgrade of the junction at the Penola Bypass and the Robe to Clay Wells Road (where the Northern Bypass and Southern Bypass meet) to a staggered T-junction.
  • Realignment of the Riddoch Highway (Church Street) T-junction with the Southern Bypass to the south of the Penola township to make the Bypass the through road.
  • Road LED lighting at the three junctions and drainage infrastructure.

The Penola Bypass significantly reduces heavy vehicle traffic volumes through the Penola township, reducing conflict between heavy vehicles, pedestrians and local traffic within Penola and provides reduced travel time and improved access for heavy vehicles.

The bypass caters for commercial vehicles travelling on the Robe to Clay Wells Road and the Riddoch Highway generated from timber plantations in the area, and improves freight efficiencies supporting the Limestone Coast region’s highly productive economy.

Project Timing

  • Construction of the Penola Southern Bypass, Stage 1 of the Penola Bypass, was completed on 10 April 2015.
  • The Penola Northern Bypass was announced as part of the 2018-2019 State Budget.
  • The contract for construction of the Penola Northern Bypass was awarded in the October 2019.
  • Main works commenced in November 2019.
  • The bypass was opened to traffic in April 2020, with main works completed by the end of June 2020.
  • Finishing works were completed in August 2020 and the final posted speed limit of 100km/h is in place.

COVID-19 Response

To help safeguard the DIT project team and the community, we have implemented measures to manage the risks of, and our response to, contracting COVID-19.

These include but are not limited to, increased personal hygiene practices and limiting face-to-face contact.

The project team will provide construction updates and work notifications via social media, letterbox drops, emails ( and the Project website. We are also available to speak via telephone (1300 794 880).

We encourage the community to register for email updates.

There will be no planned community events or information sessions until further notice.