It looks like Gold Coast motorists could be one step closer to seeing some much-needed relief on the Pacific Motorway, with the State Government starting planning works for a second M1.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has today confirmed that consultation for stage one of the ‘Coomera Connector’ will begin next month, with the road promising to provide relief for the hundreds of thousands of motorists stuck in gridlock between Brisbane and the Gold Coast daily.
Gaven MP Meaghan Scanlon told myGC the area between Nerang and Coomera will be built as a priority first, with the first stage taking a whopping 60,00 vehicles off the notoriously busy stretch.
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“We know that there are 210,000 vehicles that travel on the M1 between Coomera and Nerang every day, current estimates tell us that constructing that section of stage one would take approximately 60,000 vehicles off the M1 so that’s a massive amount of cars that would be taken off the M1 and onto that alternative corridor,” Ms Scanlon said.
It’s been revealed consultation will start next month, with locals urged to have their say on the connector.
“Locals are encouraged to have a look at this route and put forward their views… that will help us develop a detailed design and then we can go straight into that business case process,”Ms Scanlon said.
New home owners concerned about the road being built right on their door step are also being assured that they will be kept in the loop.
“Transport and Main Roads will be consulting with people who will be directly affected,” Ms Scanlon told myGC.
“This is a road that has been discussed for many years now and I think we need to progress the planning work for this as it’s a really big priority for the Gold Coast.
“We know that congestion is a number one issue so we need to do the public consultation to make sure we get this right, but at the end of the day I think this road needs to go ahead and that’s why we’re doing all of the work so that we can get this built as soon as possible.”
“We know this is a big deal for Gold Coasters and will be a game changer for motorists”
Mayor Tom Tate says the $2.4 billion project, which will eventually see a six-lane highway built all the way between Nerang and Stapylton, is what’s desperately needed to ease traffic.
“Persistence pays off! Finally, the State Government has started work on the M2 / IRTC / COOMERA Connector. Call it whatever you like, it’s the ultimate solution to our M1 congestion woes,” Mayor Tate said.
“We can keep widening the M1 at various junctions but whatever we widen it to, it will always fill with traffic. We needed a whole ‘other road’ and today it’s finally started in earnest.
The Mayor says it’s been “a hard slog” but “relentless lobbying does work.”
“As sections of this alternative to the M1 gets built, it will take more and more traffic off the M1,” he said.
“While it will be a long project, as the saying goes ‘the thousand-mile journey starts with the first step!” and this, in my book, is a giant leap forward for solving M1 congestion…the State needs to be congratulated for taking this first giant leap forward…well done and all credit where credit is due…”
RACQ has also welcomed the news by the State Government today, saying the ‘second M1’ will be a game-changer for south east Queensland drivers who spend almost three weeks a year behind the wheel.
“We’ve realised that as much as the M1 is a vital artery for South East Queensland, it cant do it all on its own… it needs help and this Coomera Connector will provide a fantastic relief valve for the area,” RACQ’s Paul Turner said.
“If we have a blockage on the M1 it gives an opportunity for traffic to have an alternative route and ease congestion.”
The prioritised southern section ‘second M1’ will run from Nerang Broadbeach Road at Nerang, to Foxwell Road at Coomera.