TMR advises that the first sod has been turned marking the start of major construction for the Bruce Highway Upgrade – Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway.
The project involves upgrading the highway from four to six lanes including major upgrades to both the Caloundra Road and Sunshine Motorway interchanges. A new two-way western service road will also be provided for local traffic between Steve Irwin Way and Tanawha Tourist Drive.
The upgrade is vital for the continued development of the coast, and will provide safer more efficient travel for motorists and industry along this section of the Bruce Highway. Importantly, it will separate long distance Bruce Highway traffic from local traffic movements, allowing the highway to function as a high-speed, high-volume corridor.
The project team has been progressing detailed design in preparation for major construction work. As part of the detailed design process and feedback received from the community, the following key innovations have been made to improve the September 2016 design layout:
- At the Sunshine Motorway interchange, the western service road proposed roundabout has been replaced with a signalised intersection to improve safety for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists. A new intersection will also be provided at Cunning and Wilson roads for local access.
- A revised bridge structure will be constructed on the Bruce Highway at the Sunshine Motorway interchange to provide an improved design that allows for future upgrades and reduces the number of major traffic changes required during construction.
Other design innovations include upgrading the southbound exit from the Bruce Highway to Caloundra Road and Steve Irwin Way to two lanes, and providing for buses at the new car pool facility next to Pignata Road for future events in the area.
These design improvements are captured in the attached May 2017 design layout (also available at www.tmr.qld.gov.au/brucehwycaloundra2sunshinemwy).
The design will continue to evolve as construction progresses to provide maximum benefit to the community and motorists.
Investigations will continue into other design elements such as improved pedestrian access at the Sippy Downs interchange, including the construction of a pedestrian/cycle bridge on the eastern side of the interchange.
Start of major construction
Major construction is now underway and in the coming weeks there will be multiple crews working in various construction zones across the project site.
Over the next couple of months, the contractor, Fulton Hogan Seymour Whyte Joint Venture, will initially focus on constructing in areas adjacent to existing roads however motorists should expect a number of changed traffic conditions including speed reductions on the Bruce Highway, Sunshine Motorway, Caloundra Road and Steve Irwin Way. This also includes changed traffic conditions, such as temporary lane closures, on surrounding local roads.
The following activities will continue to progressively roll out across the site from the southern to the northern end of the project area:
- weed spraying and removal
- vegetation removal including mulching and grinding
- construction of site accesses
- establishment of satellite offices near work zones
- fencing and surveying
- relocation of water, electricity and telecommunication services
- installation of traffic barriers and other site controls
- rock importation and dam filling
- commencement of earthworks
- drainage works.
It is important to note that these activities are dependent on weather and other site conditions.
Works will be completed during the day whenever possible. Due to the nature of the works and the proximity to live traffic, some activities will need to be completed at night when traffic volumes are lower. This will ensure the safety of motorists and workers.
Generally, working hours for the project are:
- Day works: Monday to Friday, 6am to 6pm.
- Night works: Sunday to Thursday, 8pm to 5am.
Construction is expected to be completed in late 2020, weather permitting.