Highway priorities listed
THE stretch of the Bruce Hwy between Mackay and Sarina should boast two lanes in both directions by 2031, according to the State Government.
The duplication is among 13 priority projects for the region that have been included in a 20-year blueprint for Queensland’s main artery.
The State Government yesterday released its Bruce Hwy Master plan, which includes a total 60 priority projects and will act as a lobby tool for Federal funding.
Other priorities highlighted for the Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday region include beginning construction on the Mackay ring road and a Goorganga Plains upgrade within the next five to 10 years, as well as various upgrades to intersections and approaches along the Bruce Hwy.
The blueprint also identifies the need to improve traffic capacity in rural sections of the highway. It proposes overtaking opportunities for every 10kms or so south of Sarina and about every five kilometres north of Mackay.
Premier Anna Bligh said she understood the state of the Bruce Hwy was a source of frustration for the region’s motorists.
“People in Mackay, Isaac and Whitsunday are unhappy with the Bruce Hwy and the Government is determined to do something about it,” she said.
Ms Bligh said a safe, efficient, reliable and resilient Bruce Hwy was essential if Queensland’s regionalisation plan, also released yesterday, was to be a success.
“That’s why we have developed this master plan in consultation with the Australian Government and this document will be an essential tool in securing funding,” she said.
Main Roads Minister Craig Wallace said the community, councils, industry and other organisation were invited to comment on the plan, which can be found on the Queensland Government website.
FIXING THE BRUCE
Priorities of the State Government plan:
Short-term (1-4 years): Sarina southern access upgrade, Mackay southern access upgrade, Mackay intersection upgrades
Medium-term (5-10 years): Sarina northern access upgrade, Mackay ring road, Mackay intersection upgrades
Long-term (11-20 years): Sarina to Mackay duplication, Jumper Creek upgrade, Goorganga Creek Bridge upgrade, Proserpine duplication, and a deviation at Bowen.