NSW Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole has defended the plan to install traffic lights at both ends of Gobbagombalin Bridge as opposition grows in Wagga's northern suburbs.
The Olympic Highway safety upgrade project's own social media posts have been met with dozens of comments claiming that traffic lights will make the situation worse.
Estella residents have questioned how traffic lights were selected when they were not the most popular option in community consultation.
Mr Toole said Transport for NSW will continue to discuss the upgrades with Wagga City Council and "the community will be able to provide further feedback when the review of environmental factors is publicly displayed".
"Community feedback played a key role in the preferred option decision-making process for upgrades to the Olympic Highway intersections at Old Narrandera Road and Travers Street," Mr Toole said.
"Shortlisted options, including a roundabout, traffic lights and grade separation options, were all assessed by Transport for NSW. Safety was the primary consideration in assessing these options, due to the high incidence of crashes and near-misses reported at both intersections."
"Following comprehensive investigations, traffic lights were identified as the best option to improve safety and overall traffic flow at both intersections, and allow for extra lanes to be added in future as required."
Wagga-based Nationals MLC Wes Fang likened the situation to when traffic lights were first proposed around Wagga Base Hospital.
"I understand the concerns ... when we had the Docker Street traffic lights announced it created quite an uproar and there were concerns that traffic was going to be backed up over the railway line and there would be accidents," he said.
"As it has transpired, it has in no way disrupted the flow of traffic."
Estella resident Peter Mowbray said opposition to the traffic lights plan was growing as the highway was "smooth sailing" outside peak hours. Wagga council is due to consider a development proposal that would add 750 new homes to the northern suburbs.
Estella resident Keith Holder said the new homes would add "so much congestion" and "traffic lights would not be the solution".
Wagga councillor Paul Funnell has launched an online petition against the traffic lights, which was gathered a few hundred signatures so far.
Cr Dan Hayes has called for the traffic light funding to go instead to the Gocup Road intersection at Tumut.