Gold Coast Light Rail Stage 4

Planning has begun for the Gold Coast Light Rail Stage 4, a world class public transport system for residents and visitors to the Gold Coast.

Stage 4 is a 13km extension south of the Light Rail Stage 3, linking Burleigh Heads to Coolangatta via the Gold Coast Airport.

The Gold Coast Light Rail system is being designed to be delivered in stages to respond to population growth.

The project will connect communities with businesses, jobs, hospitals and medical facilities, education, shopping, dining, entertainment and sporting centres.

Through this critical infrastructure we will support the Gold Coast and its continued growth for decades to come.


  • Improves safety
  • Improves network efficiency
  • Contributes to economy
  • Contributes to regional growth
  • Better active transport
  • Reduces peak hour congestion
  • Reduces travel time
  • Reduces maintenance
  • Accessibility

Key features

  • 13km extension from Burleigh Heads to Coolangatta via the Gold Coast Airport
  • Dual track along the existing corridor alignment
  • Improved Palm Beach Avenue precinct
    There is the potential to provide alternatives for through traffic so the intersection of Palm Beach Avenue, Gold Coast Highway and Cypress Terrace can be transformed into a pedestrian friendly precinct, with the opportunity for street front dining, shopping and urban renewal.
  • Improved connectivity to the M1
    The improved connectivity for northern Palm Beach to the M1 and its new service roads, through a widened M1 overpass at 19th Avenue proposed as part of the Pacific Motorway M1 Varsity Lakes Exit 85 to Tugun Exit 95 upgrade, will significantly improve access to and from Palm Beach.
  • Active transport
    There is the opportunity to provide new dedicated bridge crossings for bikes and pedestrians across Tallebudgera and Currumbin Creeks.
  • Oceanway
    There is the opportunity to develop a beachfront oceanway path along the full length of Palm Beach to provide high standard bike riding and walking tracks.
  • Toolona Street
    Associated projects could improve the safety and efficiency of the Gold Coast Highway and Toolona Street intersection, by providing alternative access points and reducing the number of traffic movements.
  • Burleigh Heads National Park
    The existing Burleigh Heads National Park would be preserved, and access improved to the southern entrance via active travel, light rail, bus and car options.
  • Connectivity to Burleigh Ridge Park
    In order to help protect wildlife and to improve active transport and bushwalking connectivity between Burleigh Heads National Park and Burleigh Ridge Park, a land bridge could be provided, protecting biodiversity by reconnecting ecological corridors.


The Queensland Government has committed $1.4 million to undertake the transport planning study (Tugun to Coolangatta) and $5 million (joint State and council funding) has been committed to undertake a preliminary business case for light rail planning. Any funding decision to implement the findings of this preliminary business case would be the subject of a detailed business case.

Total investment
$6.4 million
Queensland Government
$3.9 million
Local Government
$2.5 million

Current status

Planning for the future of the transport network is critical to achieving local Gold Coast City Transport Strategy 2031, state (the Queensland Government’s Shaping SEQ Regional Plan and Regional Transport Plan) and federal (the Australian Government's Smart Cities Plan) planning targets and policies.

Burleigh Heads to Tugun

We have approved corridor planning for the upgrade of the Gold Coast Highway through Palm Beach. Since 2003, we have been protecting the corridor against encroachment of development by conditioning building setbacks to allow for a future upgrade. Much of the corridor is protected under this scheme.

The Gold Coast Highway (Burleigh Heads to Tugun) Multi-modal Corridor Study has investigated whether existing planning will be adequate to accommodate the objectives of Shaping SEQ and the Gold Coast City Transport Strategy 2031, while balancing other considerations including current and future transport demands and the benefits and capacity gained from the fully-funded M1 (Varsity Lakes to Tugun) upgrade.

Download and read the Gold Coast Highway (Burleigh Heads to Tugun) Multi-modal Corridor Study Executive Summary.

Read the project newsletter for more information about the study.

Community consultation on the findings from the study was undertaken in March/April 2020. Read the community consultation report for more information.

Tugun to Coolangatta

We will continue to undertake multi-modal corridor planning between Tugun and Coolangatta, by reviewing all previous planning and develop an updated transport strategy for this corridor.

The study will build on the work completed for the Burleigh Heads to Tugun section and will consider all transport modes to determine the preferred function for the next 20 years.


The purpose of the multi-modal corridor planning is to confirm the longer-term strategic direction between Burleigh Heads and Coolangatta. As planning progresses, the community will be updated and have the opportunity to participate in community consultation to ask questions and provide face-to-face feedback.