Construction starts on Bruce Highway upgrades north of Ayr

Media Release

DC198/2016

22 November 2016

Joint release with:

Mark Bailey

Queensland Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports

George Christensen

Federal Member for Dawson

Coralee O'Rourke

Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland

Works to make the Bruce Highway in the Burdekin safer continue to roll out, with three sections of the highway 20 kilometres north of Ayr now the focus of widening and rehabilitation works.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Darren Chester said works were now underway on the $8.69 million projects.

“Reducing road trauma is a bipartisan goal for governments around the country and every dollar we invest in building safer roads is an investment in the lives of drivers. This is an important project and the end result will be a vital safety improvement for all motorists in the region,” Mr Chester said.

Main Roads and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey said an average of 25 jobs would be supported over the life of the projects.

“We have fast-tracked this work through the Queensland Government's Accelerated Works Program to help boost employment and the local economy,” Mr Bailey said.

Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said contractors RMS Engineering and Construction Pty Ltd and Vassallo Constructions Pty Ltd had been encouraged to use local suppliers.

“This is all about building a safer highway for all drivers, with the added dividend of supporting local jobs. It's important that these types of works create opportunities for local residents and businesses, and both the contractors carrying out these works are being encouraged to look to local suppliers, with their draft local industry plans and previous support of local business considered during the tender process,” Mr Christensen said.

Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland and Member for Mundingburra Coralee O'Rourke said the works would involve strengthening and widening sections of the highway.

“Works will also create a new wide centreline treatment at three locations—from Lochinvar Station Road to Collinsons Lagoon, between East Barratta Creek and West Barratta Creek, and from Didgeridoo Lagoon to East Barratta Creek. Construction is expected to be completed in April 2017, weather permitting,” Ms O'Rourke said.

The Australian Government contributed $6.95 million to the project and the Queensland Government contributed $1.74 million.