When will the Bruce be two lanes all the way to Brisbane?
THE commute for Gympie region motorists heading south on the Bruce Hwy will be quicker and easier after Christmas, when the Cooroy southern interchange (Section A) opens to traffic.
The Bruce Hwy upgrade project has involved the upgrade and realignment of 65km of the highway between Cooroy and Curra, delivered in four stages.
Section A: Cooroy southern interchange to Sankeys Rd: expected to be completed early next year.
Section B: Sankeys Rd to Traveston Rd: completed in December 2012.
Section C: Traveston Rd to Keefton Rd: expected to be completed by mid-2018.
Section D: Keefton Rd to Curra (the Gympie bypass): design is expected to be completed early next year.
The $490 million Section A project will deliver a new 13.5km, four-lane divided highway between the Cooroy southern interchange and the new section of highway near Sankeys Rd at Federal.
In April this year a new 7km section of four-lane divided highway between Cudgerie Drive and Sankeys Rd, including the new Cooroy northern interchange, was opened to traffic.
The remaining 6.5km section between Cooroy southern interchange and Cudgerie Drive are now underway and will be completed as follows:
Construction of the new two-lane southbound carriageway between Cudgerie Drive and just south of Cooroy southern interchange.
Upgrade of the Cooroy southern interchange, including new on and off-ramps; and realignment of the northern end of Nandroya Rd from the new Myall St roundabout.
The remaining section of new four-lane highway is expected to open early next year, connecting to the newly completed section of highway at Cudgerie Drive.
Section C of the Bruce Hwy (Cooroy to Curra) upgrade, involves building 10.5km of new four-lane highway between Traveston and Woondum.
The Section C major works contract was awarded to CPB Contractors in February of this year. Although motorists won't see much activity with works taking place on a new alignment away from the existing highway, work has been powering ahead for several months.
Clearing of the corridor is more than 95% complete and bulk earthworks are half finished.
The total excavation of material on the Section C project will be 1.7 million cubic metres of earth and rock, which is about 8.5 times the capacity of Suncorp Stadium.
To be able to shift this much material, CPB Contractors have enlisted a fleet of scrapers, dump trucks up to 50 tonne and a 100-tonne excavator to move around 15,000m3 of earth a day, equal to four Olympic pools.
Low impact blasting of hard rock areas started in September and will continue over the coming weeks.
Bridge construction is underway with piling works already complete at Traveston Creek and Kybong Creek bridges, and Tandur Rd and Cobbs Gully bridges.
Over the coming months, motorists will being to see a lot more of the project as work creeps closer to the existing highway near Traveston and Woondum.