Safer Intersection just around the bend thanks to roundabout designs

Design works are finalised and tenders are being called for the $14.36 million safety upgrade of the Bruce Highway and Sarina Coast Road intersection, in Sarina.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Michael McCormack, said the Sarina Northern Access Upgrade project is just one part of the $10 billion Australian Government investment to the Bruce Highway.

“Around Australia the Federal Government is investing in our roads to help drivers get some sooner and safer, as well as boosting productivity,” Mr McCormack said.

“This is especially true in rural and regional Australia—and the Bruce Highway is front and centre in that agenda.

“The main road through Sarina and can experience high traffic volumes. A new dual-lane roundabout at Sarina Beach Road and rehabilitation of the pavement on the immediate approaches will reduce congestion and travel times, particularly during peak periods, on both the highway and side roads.”

The project will significantly improve the safety, flood resilience, reliability and efficiency of the Bruce Highway and Sarina's road network well into the future.

Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey said improving safety at the intersection was a major benefit of the project.

“The project will include the duplication of the existing Bruce Highway on the approaches and departures to the upgraded intersection with a 4-lane, median separated carriageway within the existing road reserve width,” Mr Bailey said.

“The roundabout and new approaches will provide a safer alternative for drivers, helping to reduce potential conflicts—including rear-end crashes—between vehicles turning in and out of Sarina Coast Road.”

“The resulting improvement in traffic flows will also reduce travel times, contributing to a more efficient Bruce Highway.”

Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said oversized heavy vehicles would find turning to and from the Bruce Highway easier as a result of the upgrade.

“As residential, commercial and industrial development continues in the surrounding area, the upgraded intersection will be able to cater for predicted increasing traffic volumes,” Ms Landry said.

“As a regular user of this intersection, I am confident this project offers a positive improvement to the local road network and help deliver local jobs.

State Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said news that designs were completed and tenders ready to be called for was an important milestone for the project.

“This is a busy intersection connecting the Sarina Coast to the town so the roundabout solution will better manage traffic, particularly during peak periods,” Mrs Gilbert said.

“The roundabout will help reduce the speed of southbound traffic by acting as a physical transition point between the highway and the township where the speed limit decreases.”

Other safety improvements will include better access to private properties through a service road and U-turn facilities to allow for left-in and left-out movements only.

An average of 32 jobs are expected to be supported over the life of the project, and construction is scheduled to start in early 2019 and is expected to finish in early 2020, weather permitting.

The Australian Government has committed $11.49 million towards the Bruce Highway—Sarina Northern Access Upgrade with the Queensland Government committing a further $2.87 million.