Transport for NSW has called for tenders for the Cessnock Road upgrade at Testers Hollow.
The tender is to raise the height of the road at Testers Hollow to provide a more reliable connection during certain flood events.
Extensive residential development at Gillieston Heights and the opening of the Hunter Expressway brought the issue to a head after floods had cut the heavily used road six times during the last 10 years. The road's closure also forces thousands of motorists to use alternative routes as it is one of Maitland's main connections to the Hunter Expressway.
The NSW Government has allocated $2 million to the project with the federal government contributing $15 million.
The call for tenders follows site investigations, environmental assessment and design work in preparation for the new 900 metre section of road.