Motorists in Rockhampton have been given a taste of the city’s northern access upgrade, with the first of four new bridges between Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road and Terranova Drive now open, thanks to a $157 million package of works on the Bruce Highway.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the package of works was delivering both the $121 million Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade, as well as the $36 million safety project to upgrade the Terranova Drive intersection.
“It is great to see that the northern access component is progressing well with motorists north of Rockhampton able to start driving on the new Limestone Creek Bridge from Thursday 19 December,” Mr McCormack said.
“The Bridge will initially cater for both northbound and southbound traffic and once the second Limestone Creek Bridge is built, it will become dedicated to northbound traffic.
“Improving the capacity of this section of the Bruce Highway is important in reducing congestion and meeting current and future traffic demands. The start of construction of a second bridge in January next year will be a good start to achieving this.”
Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said this was just one of a number of key infrastructure projects in Rockhampton that are progressing, following the recent announcement of consultation for the city’s next major project, the $1 billion Rockhampton Ring Road.
“As a result, businesses are continuing to open up due to the jointly-funded projects like this $121 million Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade project and the $75 million Capricorn Highway duplication project at Gracemere currently under construction and the Rocky Ring Road just around the corner.
“Already, more than 400 jobs have been created by the northern access upgrade, while 180 jobs are being supported as part of the Capricorn Highway project at Gracemere,” Mr Bailey said.
“It’s why the Queensland Government is delivering more than $14.5 billion in road projects across regional Queensland, creating more than 13,500 jobs.”
Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said that Rockhampton is key regional hub in central Queensland and it is fantastic to see governments investing in our road network.
“Rockhampton is a great place to live, work and visit and to ensure all road users have the appropriate access and connectivity throughout the region, we need to make sure our roads can get us there as soon and as safe as possible,” Ms Landry said.
“The opening the first Limestone Creek bridge before Christmas is a key milestone for the project and keeps the project moving one step closer to creating four lanes on the Bruce Highway through Parkhurst.
“Combined, this $157 million package of works will duplicate 4.9 kilometres of the Bruce Highway that will cater for increasing traffic demand, enhance connectivity and improve safety for motorists.”
Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke said driving along the Bruce Highway north of Rockhampton, it was great to see the project’s progressing quickly with many active work sites, including the realigned Boundary Road, a large roundabout near Stirling Drive and the two service roads for access to commercial businesses.
“We are getting on with the job of building roads for Rockhampton, boosting productivity, creating jobs and fostering economic growth,” Mr O’Rouke said.
“In the new year, further work areas will open at Terranova Drive to build the northbound traffic lanes between Boundary Road and Ramsay Creek, in addition to the demolition and replacement of the bridge at Limestone Creek.”
Road users should remain aware of the changed traffic conditions while building continued across the full extent of the Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade.
The Australian Government is committing $96.8 million towards the $121 million Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade project and $28.8 million towards the $36 million Terranova Drive safety upgrade project, with the Queensland Government contributing the remaining funding.