New bridge to ease congestion at busy Townsville bottleneck

One of Townsville’s busiest roads, Stuart Drive, will soon undergo a major overhaul to ease congestion and improve safety.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey yesterday announced $70 million to deliver a new, upstream bridge over Townsville’s Ross River, adjacent to the existing Bowen Road bridge.

Member for Mundingburra Les Walker said the duplication of Bowen Road bridge built on investments in the surrounding road network.

“The Palaszczuk Labor government has already committed $46.4 million to duplicate Stuart Drive to four lanes between University Road and Bowen Road Bridge by 2024 so today’s announcement removes the last remaining bottleneck on this section,” Walker said.

The $46.4 million election commitment includes:

  • Replacing the Mervyn Crossman Drive and Fairfield Waters Drive roundabout with a signalised intersection.
  • Signalising the Gartrell Drive and Kokoda Street intersections.
  • And safety upgrades for pedestrians and bike riders, including wider paths, better connections, and safer crossings.

“As more people move to Queensland, and to our regional centres, it’s important that we are delivering upgrades now to prepare for future demand.

“About 24,000 people use this section of Stuart Drive each day, so I’m pleased to see this work pushing forward.”

Walker said early works on the duplication of Stuart Drive would begin later this year.

“We’re kicking off the project later this year with a package of early works, including the extensive relocation of utilities like electrical, water and telecommunications,” Walker said.

“Following this, construction will start on replacing the Mervyn Crossman Drive roundabout with signals and signalising the Kokoda Street intersection which we anticipate will begin by mid-next-year.

“This will be followed by works to upgrade Stuart Drive to four lanes from University Road, including signalising the Gartrell Drive intersection.

“It’s anticipated that works on the Stuart Drive duplication project will be complete in late-2024, weather and construction conditions permitting.”

Walker said construction on the second Bowen Road Bridge was due to start by mid-2024, weather and construction conditions permitting.

“It’s great to see that when one project comes to a close, we’ll be kickstarting the next build,” he said.

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