Planning to duplicate a key section of the Sunshine Motorway has started.
A 10-kilometre link, from the David Low Way interchange to north of Yandina-Coolum Road, has been identified as a priority section for a future upgrade to accommodate population growth.
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the preliminary evaluation was underway to double the motorway from two to four lanes.
“The Sunshine Motorway carries more than 30,000 vehicles each day between Maroochydore and communities like Noosa and Eumundi,” Mr Bailey said.
“With 88% of net migration coming to Queensland in the next couple of years, we need to get the planning done now so we’re in a position to deliver this project when it’s needed.
“We are planning for the future as part of the Palaszczuk Government’s record $27.5 billion infrastructure investment over four years, which is creating 24,000 jobs and driving Queensland’s economic recovery.”
The Palaszczuk Government has allocated $1.75 million for duplication planning for the Sunshine Motorway, with consultancy firm SMEC recently awarded a contract to help deliver the preliminary evaluation.
Mr Bailey said improvements to the Yandina-Coolum Road roundabout and the School Road intersection would also be considered as part of the project.
“Planning will investigate any necessary upgrades on the approaches to the intersection, including the existing roundabout at School Road east of the motorway,” he said.
Member for Nicklin Rob Skelton said it was an important step in supporting growing parts of the Sunshine Coast like Cooroy, Eumundi, and Yandina, and linking them with the business hub of Maroochydore.
“Additional lanes will improve safety and congestion, and mean locals and businesses who rely on the motorway will spend less time stuck in traffic, particularly during those peak commuting times,” Mr Skelton said.
“This is part of the Palaszczuk Government’s infrastructure pipeline on the Sunshine Coast, which includes more than $3.9 billion worth of jointly funded road and rail upgrades supporting thousands of jobs.
“We also know an active lifestyle is important to many people who live in the area or visit on holiday, so any future motorway upgrade will be designed to cater for people riding and walking.
“This initial planning phase needs to be completed first to identify a preferred option so a business case can be progressed.”
The preliminary evaluation is expected to be completed in late 2022, with key stakeholders and the local community to be consulted later this year.