Bruce Highway—Cairns Southern Access Corridor—Stage 4: Kate Street to Aumuller Street

We are upgrading the Bruce Highway—Cairns Southern Access Corridor from Kate Street (renamed Links Drive) to Aumuller Street to a 6-lane dual carriageway. Additional works include upgrades through to Draper Street and Kenny Street.

The Bruce Highway—Cairns Southern Access Corridor Stage 4: Kate Street to Aumuller Street project is part of the 15-year Bruce Highway Upgrade Program, a $12.6 billion program of works to improve safety, flood resilience and capacity along the Bruce Highway from Brisbane to Cairns. The program is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments, with the Australian Government contributing up to $10 billion and the Queensland Government contributing up to $2.6 billion. 

Benefits

  • Improves safety
  • Increases capacity
  • Improves network efficiency
  • Increases traffic flow
  • Reduces peak hour congestion
  • Better road access
  • Reduces travel time
  • Contributes to economy
  • Better active transport
  • Improves ride quality

Key features

  • Widening of the Bruce Highway to 6 lanes between Kate Street (renamed Links Drive) and Aumuller Street.
  • A new 3 lane inbound bridge to replace the existing 2-lane inbound bridge and widening of the existing outbound bridge from 2 to 3 lanes.
  • A new off-road shared pathway.
  • Upgrade the signalised intersections at Lyons Street and Aumuller Street with additional turning lanes.
  • Upgrade the Draper/Kenny Street roundabout to a signalised intersection with a new double left turn for outbound traffic.

Funding

This project is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments.

Total investment
$104.1 million
Australian Government
$83.3 million
Queensland Government
$20.8 million


Current status

Major works are now underway.  

Current works include:

  • bridge construction at Chinaman Creek 
  • widening of the Bruce Highway (Comport Street) between Aumuller and Fearnley Streets
  • construction of kerbing, footpaths and driveways on Draper and Buchan Streets  
  • construction of the Bruce Highway (Ray Jones Drive) off-ramp to Aumuller Street.

Image of Chinaman Creek Bridge

Chinaman Creek Bridge

Image of the intersection of the Bruce Highway and Amuller Street
Intersection of Bruce Highway and Aumuller Street

Image of the intersection of the Bruce Highway and Lyons Street
Intersection of Bruce Highway and Lyons Street

Project mapStage 4 map

Project timeline

2010

Cairns Bruce Highway Master Plan released

2015

Project funding announced

May 2018

Design process completed

August 2018

Contract awarded to Georgiou Koppen Joint Venture

August 2018

Start of works

September 2019

Chinaman Creek bridge construction commenced

Late 2020

Bridge works complete

Mid 2021

Construction completion, weather permitting

Project flythrough

Video Transcript

We are upgrading the Bruce Highway – Cairns Southern Access Corridor – from Kate Street (renamed Links Drive) to Aumuller Street.

This is one of the busiest sections of the Bruce Highway in the Cairns region accommodating 35,000 vehicles per day.

Improvements along this corridor will enhance travel and improve efficiency, providing better connections which means more reliable travel times for Cairns motorists.

At Chinaman Creek the current inbound bridge will be replaced with a new 3 lane bridge and the existing outbound bridge widened to 3 lanes.

We’re widening this section of the highway from 4 to 6 lanes which will provide motorists with quicker, safer and less congestion, into and out of Cairns CBD along this route.

Better, safer facilities will be provided for cyclists and pedestrians with a new off-road shared pathway.

Upgrades to the Lyons Street and Aumuller Street intersections will include additional turning lanes to improve traffic flow for motorists.

Works from Comport Street to Kenny Street include an upgrade of the existing roundabout at Draper Street and Kenny Street to a signalised intersection, with a new double left turn for outbound traffic.

This $104.1 million-dollar upgrade is currently under construction and will be completed by mid-2021.

We’re committed to bringing you a more efficient highway motoring experience, to get you where you need to be safely and on time.

Engineers Australia Site Visit

Video Transcript

Bruce Highway – Cairns Southern Access Corridor – Stage 4: Kate Street to Aumuller Street Project

Engineers Australia site visit

Members visited for an information sharing and networking opportunity

They discussed Rapid Impact Compaction and wick drains, ground surface treatments

Wick drains are installed to speed up ground settlement

Wick drains allow water to rise under the weight of surcharge material

Visitors were provided with up close explanations

Rapid Impact Compaction (RIC) method

Compressing an old landfill site

Chinaman Creek Bridge Decking Unit Installation Time-lapse

Video Transcript

Cairns Southern Access Corridor
Kate Street to Aumuller Street Project
Chinaman Creek bridge – bridge decking installation

Liners Installation Time-lapse

Video Transcript

Building a bridge.

Bruce Highway – Cairns Southern Access Corridor – Stage 4: Kate Street to Aumuller Street Project.

This is a 30-tonne excavator.

With a vibrating head attachment.

The steel pipes are driven down 4 metres.

They reserve space for bridge supports.

Rapid Impact Compaction (RIC) technique used on site

Video Transcript

Contract Administrator, Andrew McIlveen.

RIC is an acronym that stands for Rapid Impact Compaction.

It involves a machine, an excavator, a 50 tonne excavator, that has a purpose-built attachment that undertakes what is called Rapid Impact Compaction.

Its purpose is to, basically compact loose materials in the ground underneath where we are trying to build the road.

The design for the site and, based on the fact that we are building on an old landfill site, requires that we undertake RIC at about two-meter centres.

It's not a common construction technique and in fact this is a first for Cairns. This type of equipment and machinery has not been in this region before.