The nation’s peak infrastructure body has ticked off on two major M1 upgrades and added them to a list of priority projects across the country.
After assessing business cases submitted by the Queensland Government, Infrastructure Australia has approved the widening of the M1 between Varsity Lakes and Tugun and between Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill.
The 10 kilometre section of the M1 between Varsity Lakes and Tugun currently carries around 85,000 vehicles per day, including around 7500 heavy vehicles.
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Infrastructure Australia Chief Executive, Romilly Madew said the widening of that stretch will bring significant benefits to the area.
“Increased traffic volumes are causing a high number of accidents and worsening travel times, impacting on local residents travelling to work as well as tourists, tour operators and freight vehicles, Ms Madew said.
“Widening the motorway in both directions will reduce congestion along this vital corridor, and support the Gold Coast’s economic development.”
$45 million was allocated in last month’s State budget for the Varsity Lakes to Tugun upgrade, with work scheduled to get underway next year.
The upgrade will also see improvements to interchanges at Burleigh Heads (Exit 87), Tallebudgera (Exit 89) and Palm Beach (Exit 92).
The total coast, to be shared by the State and Federal Governments, is expected to be just over $1 billion.
Ms Madew says the Eight Mile Plains to Daisy Hill upgrades will help accommodate an estimated 25% more traffic and ease congestion for the next 15 to 20 years.
“The M1 Eight Mile Plains to Daisy Hill upgrade will improve one of the busiest sections of the motorway.
“150, 000 vehicles travel on this section of the M1 each day and this will grow to over 200,000 by 2041, driven by population growth in Southeast Queensland.”
The plan will see the road widened between Loganlea Rd and the Gateway Motorway with up to five northbound lanes.
$749 million has been committed for that upgrade with construction expected to begin in mid-2020.