Safer travel on the Bruce Highway between Edmonton and Gordonvale in Far North Queensland is a step closer with two tenderers invited to participate in the Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) phase for the Cairns Southern Access Corridor – Stage 3 project.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the project would cater for future population growth and increasing demand on the road network.
“This is the busiest two-lane section of the Bruce Highway between Brisbane and Cairns. The highway will be widened from two to four lanes, a four-lane bridge will be built over several creeks and safety access improvements where the highway intersects with local roads will be made,” Mr McCormack said.
“These measures will go some way towards making this section of the highway safer and capable of catering for future traffic volumes.
“I am pleased to announce the two shortlisted tenderers for the ECI phase are John Holland Seymour Whyte AECOM Joint Venture (HSA Group) and Bielby Hull Albem Coleman Joint Venture (BHA Coleman JV).
“Contractors from both joint ventures have long histories successfully delivering major infrastructure projects in the North Queensland region.”
Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey said the ECI stage was a key phase in the project timeline.
“It provides the two tenderers the opportunity to be involved in the preliminary design process and work closely with Transport and Main Roads (TMR),” Mr Bailey said.
“Throughout the ECI process, the tenderers will consider design alternatives providing balance between functionality, project cost and construction impacts, as well as how innovative construction methods can be included in the design.
“The project is a fantastic development for Far North Queensland and will ensure the region has the road infrastructure in place to support its economic future.”
Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch said the upgrades would reduce congestion in the long term.
“This project demonstrates the Australian Government’s commitment to improving safety and reducing congestion on the Bruce Highway in the Leichhardt electorate and across Queensland,” Mr Entsch said.
“This is one of the biggest road projects on record for Far North Queensland, with works including duplication and upgrade of 10.5 kilometres of the Bruce Highway.”
Speaker of the Queensland Parliament and Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt said he was very pleased that the duplication project was a step closer.
“This upgrade will have a significant economic impact during the construction phase, supporting hundreds of jobs and pumping millions of dollars into the local economy,” he said.
“The upgrade will complement the recently announced State Development Area and associated jobs, as well as accelerate housing construction in our fast growing southern corridor.
“The long-term benefits will be safer journeys and reduced congestion and I am looking forward to the successful tenderer being announced soon.”
The Australian Government has committed $384.8 million to the $481 million Bruce Highway – Cairns Southern Access Corridor – Stage 3 – Edmonton to Gordonvale project with the Queensland Government contributing $96.2 million.
Construction is expected to start in 2020 and be completed in mid-2023, weather permitting.