Bruce Highway Upgrade Program

The Bruce Highway Upgrade Program is the largest road infrastructure program Queensland has ever seen. It is aimed at improving safety, flood resilience, and capacity along the length and breadth of the highway between Brisbane and Cairns.

Starting on 1 July 2013, the program was initially developed as an $8.5 billion 10-year commitment jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments. In May 2018, the Australian Government committed an additional $3.3 billion (based on 80:20 funding arrangements) to its existing $6.7 billion commitment.

The Queensland Government also committed to providing an additional $200 million each year (based on 80:20 funding arrangements) for upgrades on the Bruce Highway on top of the already provided $1.8 billion. In total, the program will deliver $13 billion of works over a 15-year period (2013–14 to 2027–28).

Specific commitments for Bruce Highway Cooroy to Curra—(Section D: Woondum to Curra) and Townsville Ring Road project (Stage 5), were outlined in the additional funding, as well as:

  • targeted productivity-boosting, safety and flood resilience projects
  • addressing safety hot spots
  • reducing the distance between electric charging stations
  • established the Bruce Highway Trust Advisory Council to develop a 15–year vision and rolling 5-year action plans.

Highlights at the 7-year mark

As at December 2020, 23 major projects had been completed under the program including the delivery of:

  • 64 bridges
  • 30 new rest stops
  • 300km safer roadsides
  • 190km wide centre line treatments.

The program also supports regional economic growth and boosts employment opportunities in Queensland.

About the Bruce Highway

The Bruce Highway is Queensland’s major north-south freight and commuter corridor, connecting coastal population centres from Brisbane to Cairns over a length of 1,677km. It is also a vital part of the National Land Transport Network providing linkages for west-east freight networks connecting a significant resource sector, and inland agriculture production areas to 11 coastal ports, and is a major tourism route.

About the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program

The program commenced on 1 July 2013, with a rolling program of upgrade projects up and down the highway, to be completed by June 2028.

The 15-year program focuses delivery on the following 3 priority areas:

  • Safety improvements to enhance the safety of the highway through the provision of wide centre line treatments, intersection improvements, and safety barriers to reduce the risk of fatal and serious injury crashes so that it is safe for all road users.
  • Flood improvements to enhance the efficiency of the highway by raising bridges and approaches and improving flood immunity on sections of highway subject to frequent flooding. Whilst it may not be feasible at this time to provide an entirely flood-free route, roads are assessed to ensure a consistent standard is provided for that specific network link.
  • Capacity improvements to enhance economic opportunity through improved level of service on the highway. This will be achieved by the provision of capacity improvement projects such as additional lanes, managed motorways, grade separation (that is, separation of different flows of traffic using physical means) and intersection upgrades.

Plan ahead in case of delays.

Due to this work being underway, there may be delays that impact your travel. Please visit QLDTraffic for up-to-date details to help you plan your journey.

37 Projects in Bruce Highway Upgrade Program

Burdekin River Bridge

Burdekin River Bridge, rehabilitation program

The department is undertaking the rehabilitation and maintenance program for the Burdekin River Bridge to preserve the structural integrity of the bridge. The ongoing program will ensure a safe and durable crossing is maintained for the long-term use of vehicles, heavy transport operators, rail operations, bicycle riders and pedestrians.

Bruce Highway (Ayr - Townsville), Killymoon Creek to Townsville Port Road, improve intersection

Bruce Highway minor intersection improvements at Allendale Drive and Three Sisters Drive, as well as a major upgrade to the Muntalunga Drive intersection.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Bowen – Ayr), Bowen Connection Road to Champion Street intersection, widen pavement

The project will deliver safety upgrades to around 6km of the Bruce Highway between the Bowen Connection Road and Champion Street intersections to provide a safer, smoother and more efficient road network.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Brisbane - Gympie), Caboolture - Bribie Island Road to Steve Irwin Way upgrade

This project will widen the 11km stretch of the Bruce Highway from 4 to 6 lanes between Caboolture-Bribie Island Road and Steve Irwin Way (Exit 163). This will include upgrading creek crossings to improve flood immunity at Lagoon, King Johns, Six Mile, Un-named and Beerburrum Creeks.

Artist impression diverging diamond interchange at Caloundra Road

Bruce Highway (Brisbane - Gympie), Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway, upgrade

Major construction is complete on the Bruce Highway – Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway project. The highway has been upgraded to 6 lanes between Caloundra Road and the Sunshine Motorway. This includes major upgrades to both interchanges and a new 2-way service road for local traffic between Steve Irwin Way and Tanawha Tourist Drive.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Cooroy to Curra) Section D

The $1 billion Section D: Woondum to Curra project is a new 26km, 4-lane divided highway between the existing Bruce Highway interchange at Woondum, south of Gympie and Curra.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Gin Gin to Benaraby), improve safety, construct overtaking lane and wide centre line treatment

Safety improvements are being delivered on the Bruce Highway south of Miriam Vale between Charnwood Road and Fairbairn Flats.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Gympie – Maryborough), Tiaro Bypass, construct four lane bypass

Planning is underway for a new 4-lane section of the Bruce Highway to the east of Tiaro. The project will increase the flood immunity, safety and efficiency of the Bruce Highway and future-proof the road to cater for growing traffic volumes. It will also remove a large number of heavy vehicles from the Tiaro township, improving safety and liveability for residents.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Ingham – Innisfail), Gairloch safety improvements

Planning has started to improve safety and reduce the time of closure due to flooding on a complex section of the Bruce Highway at the Gairloch floodway, 5km north of Ingham.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Innisfail - Cairns), Innisfail Bypass, plan and preserve corridor

The department is progressing a $9 million planning project to plan and protect a suitable road corridor for a future bypass of Innisfail, if required.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Innisfail – Cairns) and Munro street (Babinda) intersection upgrade

A project is progressing to upgrade the intersection of the Bruce Highway and Munro Street at Babinda.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Mackay - Proserpine), Jumper Creek, upgrade flood immunity

Construction is underway to upgrade flood immunity at Jumper Creek, between Mackay and Proserpine.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Mackay to Proserpine) Bruce Highway Safety Package (Leap to Careys Creek)

The Bruce Highway Safety Package (The Leap to Careys Creek) was delivered as part of the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program to improve safety, flood resilience and capacity along the Bruce Highway.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Mackay – Proserpine), Knobels Road, upgrade intersection and approaches

Construction has started at the Knobels Road and Nebia Coningsby Road intersection to improve safety and enhance visibility.

Bruce Highway (Maryborough – Gin Gin), Saltwater Creek and Deadmans Gully, flood immunity upgrades

Construction is underway to improve flood immunity along an 11km section of the Bruce Highway between Maryborough and Torbanlea.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Maryborough – Gin Gin), various locations including Wongi to Nulla Flats, improve safety

Work started in early 2022 to upgrade road safety along a 16km section of the Bruce Highway from Torbanlea to north of Howard.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Proserpine - Bowen), Emu Creek to Drays Road, various locations, widen formation

Safety upgrades are being delivered to almost 20km of the Bruce Highway from Proserpine to Bowen, as part of the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Proserpine – Bowen) Ten Mile Creek to Yeates Creek, improve safety

Safety upgrades are being delivered on the Bruce Highway, between Proserpine and Bowen, to create a better transport network that connects regional towns to cities.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway (Proserpine – Bowen), Bowen Connection Road, improve intersection

The Bruce Highway and Don Street intersection will be upgraded to provide a safer, smoother, more efficient road network.

The project will also reconfigure the intersection to include a separate lane for vehicles turning right from the Bruce Highway to enter and accelerate to through traffic speed before merging.

Nielson Avenue to Plentiful Creek

Bruce Highway (Rockhampton – St Lawrence), Neilsen Avenue to Plentiful Creek, improve safety

Safety improvements are being delivered on the Bruce Highway between Terranova Drive and Etna Creek Road, North of Rockhampton.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway Planning Project—Pine River to Caloundra Road 

The department has delivered a planning project to investigate and prioritise upgrades to the Bruce Highway between the Pine River and Caloundra Road.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway Upgrade—Deception Bay Road Interchange

The Deception Bay Road interchange project is being delivered as part of the Bruce Highway Upgrade to improve safety, ease congestion and cater for future traffic growth.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway Upgrade—Deception Bay Road to Caboolture-Bribie Island Road

A planning study has been undertaken to investigate future upgrade requirements on the Bruce Highway between Deception Bay Road and Caboolture-Bribie Island Road.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway Upgrade—Maroochydore Road and Mons Road Interchanges

The Maroochydore Road and Mons Road Interchanges project is being delivered as part of the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program to improve safety, ease congestion and cater for future traffic growth.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway Upgrade—Sunshine Motorway to Maroochydore Road

We have completed early planning to determine future upgrade needs for the Bruce Highway between the Sunshine Motorway and Maroochydore Road. The planning identifies a long-term solution to meet future traffic growth, reduce traffic congestion, and improve safety and flood immunity.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway – Pine River to Caloundra Road Smart Motorways (Stage 2)

The Bruce Highway - Pine River to Caloundra Road Smart Motorways (Stage 2) project will deliver additional Smart Motorways technology along a 60km section of the Bruce Highway between the Pine River and Caloundra Road.

Overhead shot of road with surrounding land, mountains

Bruce Highway, Cairns Southern Access Corridor (Stage 3), Edmonton to Gordonvale, construction

A total transport solution is being undertaken to provide long-term improvements to traffic flow and road safety through reducing congestion, highway travel time and improving road access.

Kate Street to Aumuller Street

Bruce Highway, Cairns Southern Access Corridor (Stage 4), Kate Street to Aumuller Street, widen to six lanes

The Bruce Highway Cairns Southern Access Corridor from Kate Street (renamed Links Drive) to Aumuller Street has been upgraded to a 6-lane dual carriageway. Additional works included upgrades through to Draper Street and Kenny Street.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway, Cairns Southern Access Corridor (Stage 5), Foster Road upgrade intersection

Planning for the Bruce Highway, Cairns Southern Access Corridor (Stage 5), Foster Road upgrade intersection project will assess and recommend options to upgrade this intersection.

Haughton River Bridge

Bruce Highway, Haughton River Floodplain Upgrade, construct bridges and approaches

The Haughton River Floodplain Upgrade project included safety and flood resilience upgrades to 13.5km of the Bruce Highway at Giru (midway between Ayr and Townsville). The project scope included construction of 5 bridges and 2 cane rail overpasses, upgrading intersections and installing wide centreline treatments.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway—Cooroy to Curra

This project involves a 62km realignment and upgrade of the Bruce Highway to 4 lanes between Cooroy and Curra and is among Queensland's highest priority road projects.

No image supplied

Bruce Highway—Wide Bay Highway intersection upgrade

The Bruce Highway and Wide Bay Highway intersection has been upgraded to install a roundabout at the intersection. Additional roadside improvements were also completed along the Bruce Highway between Meadows Lane and the Wide Bay Highway and upgrades at the Spring Valley Road intersections.

Mackay Northern Access

Mackay Northern Access Upgrade, construct additional lanes

A major upgrade of Bruce Highway and major intersections north of Mackay to reduce congestion and improve traffic flow in critical areas has been completed.

No image supplied

Mackay Port Access, Bruce Highway to Mackay - Slade Point Road, construct new two-lane road

Mackay Port Access will provide a direct link for freight movements from the Mackay Port to the Mackay Ring Road, and west to the Bowen Basin coal fields via the Walkerston Bypass and Peak Downs Highway.

Pioneer River construction Mackay Ring Road

Mackay Ring Road

An improved link has been delivered from the south to the northern suburbs reducing traffic through Mackay.

Rockhampton - Yeppon Intersection artist impression which is 4 roads with a traffic light intersection

Rockhampton Ring Road plan, preserve and construct

This project is currently being reviewed and will be updated when the revised project timeline is confirmed by the Australian Government.

No image supplied

Townsville Ring Road (Stage 5)

The Townsville Ring Road Stage 5 project will deliver improved road safety, efficiency and travel time reliability for freight and passenger vehicles on the Bruce Highway in Townsville.