UPDATE: MOTORISTS will be forced to travel 10km/h slower on the M1 between Brisbane and the Gold Coast from Thursday, with reduced speed limits coming into effect ahead of the Commonwealth Games.
As of 1 March, speeds on the Pacific Motorway will be dropped back 10km/h – from 100km/h to 90km/h – between the M1/M3 merge at Eight Mile Plains and Logan Motorway.
The speed limit will also be dropped 10km/h closer to the Coast, with speeds between the Logan Motorway and Smith Street Motorway going from 110km/h to 100km/h. Scroll down for full list of changes.
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It’s anticipated the reduced speed limits will increase motorway capacity, safety and reliability.
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said maintaining traffic flow and ensuring the safe movement of road users between Brisbane and the Gold Coast was critical to the Games’ success.
“This is going to be the biggest sporting event in Queensland’s history, and we’re pulling out all stops to make sure it goes as smoothly as possible,” Mr Bailey said.
“In April 2017, the Government announced a suite of temporary initiatives to improve reliability and safety on the M1 during the Games.
‘‘These changes began with the successful implementation of the Trucks Use Left Lane (TULL) on 1 August 2017.
‘‘We’d now like motorists to be aware of the next round of temporary traffic management initiatives set to commence in stages from March 1.”
Scroll down to see a full list of changes to the M1.
Mr Bailey said national and international research showed lowering speeds actually increased capacity.
“The research showed speed reduction and ramp metering helps to increase motorway capacity, improve travel speeds during peak times and reduce the number of crashes,” Mr Bailey said.
‘‘Variable message signs will be used on the M1 in the lead-up to the Games to increase awareness of temporary speed reductions and prepare motorists for the changed conditions.
‘‘Ramp metering using mobile traffic lights and variable message signs will commence at the southbound Gold Coast Highway and Smith Street on-ramps in mid-March 2018 and continue for the duration of the Games.
Mr Bailey said the way people travelled on the M1 would make a big difference during the Games.
“Travel choices during the Games will be crucial to how the M1 operates and performs during the Games,’’ Mr Bailey said.
“I’d urge anyone intending to travel to the Games to visit the Get Set for the Games website for information on planning your trip.
“This is a massive event, and while we appreciate it will impact on residents, we are asking them to do what they can to help us make these games the greatest sporting event in Queensland’s history.”
‘‘These will only be active during peak times or when required.’’
The reduced speed limits are expected be in effect until at least the completion of the Games on April 15.
Motorists are urged to plan ahead leading up to and during the Games at getsetforthegames.com.
The temporary M1 management initiatives for the Games include:
- Reducing the speed in the 110km/h speed zone by 10km/h to 100km/h between the Logan Motorway Interchange (Exit 31) to Gaven (Exit 69), northbound and southbound from March 1 2018.
- Reducing the speed in the 100km/h zone by 10km/h to 90km/h from the M1/M3 merge at Eight Mile Plains to Logan Motorway Interchange, northbound and southbound from March 1 2018.
- Temporary ramp metering at the southbound Gold Coast Highway (Exit 62) and Smith Street (Exit 66) on-ramps to keep traffic moving at a constant pace as vehicles join the motorway, from mid-March 2018.
- Additional Traffic Response Units and towing vehicles to ensure incidents are cleared from the M1 as quickly as possible. These will be deployed in stages from today with all units deployed by April 4 2018. The deployment will finish on April 15 2018 after the closing ceremony.
- Allowing vehicles carrying athletes and officials to travel along the hard shoulder of the M1, under police escort where safe and at low speed, if there is severe congestion that may prevent them from arriving at an event on time. This will only occur between April 4 2018 and April 18 2018.
- Speed enforcement measures on the M1 including trailer mounted speed cameras, which are to be managed by Queensland Police Service (QPS).
– Additional reporting by Jaydan Duck.