Almost a year after roadwork crews downed tools and walked off the job, major safety upgrades on the Bruce Highway between Proserpine and Bowen in Queensland have resumed.
Construction halted on three projects between Emu Creek and Drays Road, and Bowen Connection Road and Champion Street in February last year after the original principal contractor, WBHO Infrastructure, went into voluntary administration.
Early works have restarted, and major works are scheduled to begin in mid-February after new contractors RMS Engineering and Construction and FKG Civil mobilised to deliver:
- 20km of safety improvements between Emu Creek and Drays Road, including wide centre line treatments, guard rails and protected right turn lanes at five intersections.
- Safety improvements to about 6km of highway between the Bowen Connection Road and Champion Street, including road widening, wide centre line treatments installation, intersection upgrades, removal of roadside hazards and guard rail installations.
- Upgrades to the intersection at Bowen Connection Road and Don Street to include a separate lane for vehicles turning right from the highway to enter and accelerate to through traffic speed before merging.
All three projects are expected to be completed in early 2024, weather permitting.
The projects are being delivered as part of the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program – a 15-year, $13 billion program of works aimed at improving safety, flood resilience and capacity along the Bruce Highway from Brisbane to Cairns, with the Australian Government contributing $10.4 billion and the Queensland Government contributing $2.6 billion.
The Emu Creek to Drays Road investment is estimated to support an average of 55 direct jobs over the life of the project.
The Bowen Connection Road to Champion Street investment is estimated to support 35 direct jobs, while the Bowen Connection Road and Don Street intersection project is estimated to support a further 10 direct jobs over the life of the projects.
“We are one tiny step closer to a road that we deserve, and I’ll be watching this progress with interest,” said Andrew Willcox, the LNP federal MP for Dawson.