Rockhampton Ring Road

The Rockhampton Ring Road project will improve road safety and strengthen the region’s economy by improving freight efficiency, flood resilience and job opportunities. The alignment will support connectivity between key employment, leisure, tourism and residential growth areas of Rockhampton and the wider region.

A new 14.7km ring road will be delivered with a total of 17.4km of new road being constructed.

The ring road will link the Bruce Highway through Rockhampton extending from the Capricorn Highway (Nelson Street), to Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road/Bruce Highway intersection and will include a new crossing of the Fitzroy River at Pink Lily. 

The Bruce Highway is Queensland's major north-south freight and commuter corridor, connecting coastal population centres from Brisbane to Cairns over 1,677km. 

The existing Bruce Highway through Rockhampton is one of the last remaining pinch points between Brisbane and Cairns, with 19 sets of traffic signals to navigate.

Traffic volumes on the Bruce Highway in Central Queensland range from 2,600 vehicles per day in rural sections to 35,000 vehicles per day in urban centres.

The Bruce Highway is a key heavy vehicle route with an average of about 2,640 heavy vehicles travelling through Rockhampton daily.

Transport and Main Roads is committed to working with the Rockhampton community and hearing your views on the Rockhampton Ring Road.

Benefits

  • Improves safety
  • Increases capacity
  • Improves network efficiency
  • Increases traffic flow
  • Reduces peak hour congestion
  • Better road access
  • Reduces travel time
  • Contributes to regional growth
  • Improves ride quality
  • Improves flood immunity
  • Contributes to economy

Key features

  • New crossing of the Fitzroy River.
  • Reduced congestion and improved safety through the city by providing an alternative route for heavy vehicles.
  • Improved connectivity to key facilities, services and precincts within the Rockhampton region.
  • Continued access to the road network during major flooding.

Funding

The Rockhampton Ring Road construction is funded through the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program.

Total investment
$1 billion
Australian Government
$800 million
Queensland Government
$200 million

Current status

Planning for the Rockhampton Ring Road is complete with the business case for the $1 billion road construction project assessed by Infrastructure Australia.

The detailed design phase has started. Jacobs SMEC Design Joint Venture has been appointed to deliver the detailed design.

A series of public information sessions were held from May until June 2021 where the design for the project was available. Community members had the opportunity to share their views at these sessions.

The detailed design phase will review the concept design and consider feedback received from the community, industry and stakeholders.

Timeline

Rockhampton Ring Road timeline

Detailed design

The detailed design phase will refine the concept design in consideration of traffic efficiency, improved safety, increased resilience to flooding, improved connectivity and accessibility, and environment and cultural heritage.

A key task in this phase is to review and refine the options for the four new connections into Rockhampton city. 

Intersection options identified in the planning phase are now being optimised to ensure the Rockhampton Ring Road supports traffic efficiency and local road connectivity, while also considering broader community impacts like noise and visual amenity.

The design

The Rockhampton Ring Road extends from the Capricorn Highway in the south to Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road in the north.

Rural sections of road, from the Gracemere and Capricorn Highway connection through to the West Rockhampton connection, will be 2 lanes.

The new Fitzroy River crossing will be about 250m long, consist of 4 lanes and will extend from Pink Lily to Kawana. Urban areas, starting at the West Rockhampton connection through to the Parkhurst connection (a future growth area), dictates 4 lanes.

The Rockhampton Ring Road will improve connectivity to Rockhampton by increasing the number of access points to the city. The design for the Rockhampton Ring Road has been developed to provide a high-level of flood immunity, similar to a 1 in 100 year flood event and equivalent to 9.86m on the Rockhampton flood gauge in the Fitzroy River (a 1% Annual Exceedance Probability).

The design includes a number of features such as bridges and culverts at key locations along the Rockhampton Ring Road to manage water flow. The concept design includes more than 6km of bridging to maintain existing flow-paths, where possible, and minimise the impacts of changes in anticipated flood levels as far as practicable.  

Ring road connections

There will be 4 new connections into Rockhampton via the Rockhampton Ring Road. These connections best support the current and predicted future traffic conditions across the Rockhampton region. 

Gracemere/Capricorn Highway connection

The design includes a new roundabout and high-level connection to the Capricorn Highway at Fairy Bower, which will maintain access during times of flooding. A roundabout at the Capricorn Highway will facilitate access and minimise flooding impacts to surrounding properties. 

West Rockhampton connection

A new connection road is included in the design, providing access into West Rockhampton and beyond, via a roundabout. This will provide a link to Rockhampton-Ridgelands Road, supporting connectivity to the Pink Lily, Alton Downs and Ridgelands communities.

Traffic modelling undertaken as part of the planning phase identified that the state-controlled Rockhampton-Ridgelands Road can accommodate the additional traffic from the new West Rockhampton connection from the Rockhampton Ring Road.

Traffic dispersion from the West Rockhampton connection occurs via various roads on Rockhampton’s southside to access the airport, schools, hospital and sporting and leisure facilities.

Alexandra Street connection

The design proposes a grade separated intersection at Alexandra Street. 

Parkhurst Connection

The design includes a new signalised intersection, connecting the ring road to the existing Bruce Highway/Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road intersection. This connection improves connectivity to the Capricorn Coast, providing a direct east-west connection and supports the efficiency of north-south traffic using the Bruce Highway. 

Environment

Protecting the environment and its history is an important part of the project. Comprehensive environmental and cultural heritage investigations will be undertaken through the life of the project.

TMR recognises the significance of different cultures and the importance of managing Indigenous, historical, shared and natural heritage. Engagement with the Darumbal People is a priority to ensure cultural considerations are appropriately addressed. All reasonable practical measures to avoid harming Aboriginal heritage and the conservation of places and areas entered in the Queensland Heritage Register will be taken.

Property

The land needed to build the Rockhampton Ring Road was identified and gazetted in February 2019, with impacted property owners notified.

A portion of the properties required to build the Ring Road have been acquired. Consultation is continuing with the remaining impacted property owners as the project progresses.

Find out more about land resumptions and early acquisition of properties.

Rockhampton Ring Road - overview map

Project map 

Rockhampton Ring Road - design map

Design map
View Rockhampton Ring Road - design map

Rockhampton Ring Road - visualisation

Video description

This is a visual animation of the Rockhampton Ring Road.

The Rockhampton Ring Road is a major Central Queensland infrastructure project, providing a western link of the Bruce Highway at Rockhampton.

Rockhampton Ring Road will:

  • connect commuters to priority precincts
  • offer better connections for productivity and growth 
  • provide an alternative heavy vehicle route
  • improve daily commute times 
  • improve road safety and flood resilience  

The $1 billion major infrastructure project will significantly reduce congestion within Rockhampton’s CBD. 

It will improve connectivity to important precincts and services within the region.

Rockhampton Ring Road will connect at the Capricorn Highway near Gracemere in the south, improving connectivity to industrial and residential growth areas, and resource and agriculture sectors to the west. It will also improve access to destinations like Emerald, Gladstone and Brisbane.

From the connection at west Rockhampton, road users will be able to easily access the Rockhampton airport, the defence depot, the base hospital, emergency services, the CBD, education institutions and sporting and leisure facilities.

The ring road will also include a new, third Fitzroy River crossing from Pink Lily the south, to Parkhurst in North Rockhampton.

A connection near Alexandra Street in north Rockhampton will provide key links into Parkhurst industrial and residential growth areas, retail precincts and the North Rockhampton CBD.

At Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road, road users will be able to easily access and connect with CQUniversity, emergency services, the Capricorn Coast and other tourism destinations and routes to Yeppoon and Mackay.

The Rockhampton Ring Road is connecting your region and Driving Central Queensland’s future.

To stay informed about the project, register your details at tmr.qld.gov.au/rockhamptonringroad

Rockhampton Ring Road - benefits

Video Transcript

The Rockhampton Ring Road is a major infrastructure project within the Central Queensland region, providing a western link of the Bruce Highway at Rockhampton.

As Queensland’s major freight and commuter corridor, the Bruce Highway currently sees:

  • 2600 vehicles per day in rural areas,
  • 30,029 vehicles per day in urban centres and 
  • 2640 heavy vehicles through Rockhampton daily.

Rockhampton Ring Road will:

  • connect commuters to priority service precincts
  • offer better logistical connections for productivity and growth
  • provide an alternative heavy vehicle route
  • improve daily commute times, road safety and flood resilience
  • and generate job opportunities.  

The $1 billion major infrastructure project will significantly reduce congestion within Rockhampton’s CBD. 

It will improve connectivity to important precincts and services within the region.

Rockhampton Ring Road will connect Rockhampton in the south, at Capricorn Highway near Gracemere. It will provide road users with links into the industrial and residential growth areas, and resource and agriculture sectors to the west. Also connecting and improving access to destinations like Emerald in the west, and Gladstone and Brisbane in the south.

From the connection at west Rockhampton, road users will be able to easily access the Rockhampton airport,  the defence depot , the base hospital, emergency services, the CBD, education institutions and sporting and leisure facilities.

The ring road will also include a new, third Fitzroy River crossing from Pink Lily area in the south, to Parkhurst in North Rockhampton.

A connection near Alexandra Street in north Rockhampton  will provide key links into Parkhurst industrial and residential growth areas, retail precincts and the North Rockhampton CBD.

At Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road, road users will be able to easily access and connect with CQUniversity, emergency services, the Capricorn Coast and other tourism destinations and routes to Yeppoon and Mackay.

The Rockhampton Ring Road is connecting your region and Driving Central Queensland’s future.

To stay informed about the project, register your details at tmr.qld.gov.au/rockhamptonringroad