Stage 1 North – Shipper Drive to Helensvale Road newsletter

Artist’s impression Hope Island Road which shows a bridge over Hope Island Road and vehicles going round a roundabout
Artist’s impression: Hope Island Road.

The Coomera Connector is South East Queensland’s largest road infrastructure project and will improve how we move around our neighbourhoods. The $2.16 billion Stage 1 project, between Coomera and Nerang, is jointly funded (50:50) by the Australian Government and Queensland Government.

In November 2021, Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture was awarded an early works contract to progress the design and commence early works for Stage 1 North, from Shipper Drive, Coomera to Helensvale Road, Helensvale.

Key highlights

  • The Coomera Connector will be a high-speed motorway.
  • Stage 1 North will be 4 lanes with future widening into the centre median to 6 lanes
  • Open graded asphalt road surface used for increased safety and reduced noise
  • Stage 1 North will include the construction of 6 new bridge structures
  • Working with local environmental groups to promote sustainable outcomes

Design update

During the design phase, some changes and improvements were made. These include:

  • local connection points for the active transport shared path
  • location of the rest area on the shared path
  • upgrades to surrounding local roads at interchange locations.
Project location map

Download the detailed Coomera Connector Stage 1 North map (JPG, 2.62MB) for more information about the location of this motorway and the locations of maintenance access tracks, active transport shared paths, noise walls and on road bicycle path crossover. 

Project location map shows that the Coomera Connector stage 1 will start at Helensvale road and end at Shipper drive.

Shipper Drive interchange

Until future stages of the Coomera Connector are built, Shipper Drive will be the end point and will be the main direct access route to the Coomera Connector in the north. The Stage 1 North package will:

  • realign and widen Shipper Drive to 4 lanes between Foxwell Road and Waterway Drive
  • convert the existing roundabout at Foxwell Road and Shipper Drive to a fully signalised intersection
  • construct a signalised intersection on Shipper Drive (between Oaky Creek and Foxwell Road).
Coomera River bridge

The new Coomera River bridge is almost 1km long, from the overflow on the north bank, across the Coomera River and over Hope Island Road and Saltwater Creek.

The section over the Coomera River will be built at a height similar to the existing rail corridor bridge and will meet all design requirements as outlined in the Maritime Safety Queensland’s Beacon to Beacon Guides.

Artist’s impression of bridge over water.
Artist’s impression: Coomera River bridge (north bank).
Noise mitigation

We recognise noise is a key concern for residents who live close to the Coomera Connector. To address road traffic noise, the Stage 1 North package includes almost 4km of noise barriers:

  • installed on both sides of the corridor between Saltwater Creek and Helensvale Road and across parts of the Coomera River bridge
  • up to a maximum height of 6m depending on the location and terrain
  • a mix of clear and coloured acrylic panels in many locations to maximise natural light and improve visual amenity.

Noise barrier heights are now being finalised and Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture will soon contact adjacent property owners to discuss in further detail.

Active transport network

A new 4m wide shared pedestrian and bicycle path on the eastern side of the motorway will provide active transport opportunities that have previously been unavailable.

The shared path will provide connections to key community hubs at Shipper Drive, Beattie Road, the new Hope Island train station, Condamine Crescent, Monterey Keys, Rosswood Park and Helensvale Road.

Based on community feedback and to improve safety and amenity, the rest area has been located on the northern side of the river.

Artist impression that shows (background) Helensvale Road overpass and the walking path overpass (forground)
Artist’s impression: Helensvale Road interchange (background) and active transport path (foreground)
Saltwater Creek Reserve

Saltwater Creek Reserve and the car parking area will be temporarily closed, and the amenities block demolished to make way for construction activities in this area. Access to Saltwater Creek will still be available from the southern bank via River Downs Park.

Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture will work with City of Gold Coast to reinstate the park towards completion of the project.

Warrego Way pedestrian underpass

For safety reasons, the rail underpass between Warrego Way and Westpark Court in Helensvale will permanently close.

To keep this access under the rail line, new motorway and interchange ramps would require a 100m long and angled tunnel that would create an unsafe environment for active transport users and the neighbourhood. A safer option is to use the existing path on Helensvale Road.

Helensvale Road interchange

Helensvale Road is the end point of Stage 1 North and the start point for Stage 1 Central. Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture will build the on-ramp and off-ramp on the northern side of Helensvale Road and the Coomera Connector over Helensvale Road. The on-ramp and off-ramp on the southern side will be constructed as part of the Central package.

An interchange at Hope Island Road was ruled out as it would have required realigning the Coomera Connector, resulting in significant land resumptions and potential flooding issues.

The Transport and Main Roads will continue to work with City of Gold Coast on impacts of the Coomera Connector to the local road network, including Helensvale Road.

Additional design information

There are several aspects of the project that are fixed and unchangeable in order to meet various guidelines and specifications.

Road corridor

Comprehensive investigations during the planning and business case phases determined the most appropriate location for the Coomera Connector. The corridor was gazetted between March 2016 and March 2019.

Road design

Lane widths, speed limits, lighting, materials, signage and bridges must adhere to strict engineering and safety standards. This ensures the Coomera Connector is safe and suitable for all road users.


Regulated by local, state and federal legislation, the project will ensure environmental impacts are identified and appropriately avoided, mitigated or managed.


Based on noise monitoring and modelling, noise reduction measures are determined by the Department of Transport and Main Roads’ Transport Noise Management Code of Practice.


Guided by Transport and Main Roads and City of Gold Coast standards, plant species will support local biodiversity and meet design requirements such as providing headlight and noise barrier screening, minimising maintenance, reducing weeds in water courses, and improving local amenity. 

Communication and engagement

Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture has developed a Communication and Engagement Strategy to ensure a consistent and proactive approach to managing impacts during the detailed design and construction phases of Stage 1 North. The strategy includes:

  • an overview of the project
  • who has an interest or is impacted by the project
  • Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture’s communication and engagement approach.

To view and provide feedback on Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture’s Communication and Engagement Strategy email Acciona Georgiou Joint Venture at or call on 1800 568 978 and select Option 1.

More information