Dedicated truck route now open

Dedicated truck route capable of boosting productivity opens as part of major road project in northern Queensland

January 22, 2010

A dedicated truck route capable of boosting productivity has opened as part of a major road project in North Queensland.

The 2.5 kilometre Stuart Bypass opened today, meaning as much as 500 trucks a day will now be able to avoid slow-moving local roads.

The multi-million dollar route was completed as part of the Townsville Port Access Road project.

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese says the $190 million project is "vitally important for industry across the region" because it provides a dedicated heavy vehicle link between the Bruce and Flinders highways.

Trucking operators using the routes are also expected to benefit once the Eastern Access Corridor is completed, with Albanese saying it will directly link both highways to the Port of Townsville.

Queensland Main Roads Minister Craig Wallace says the Stuart Bypass means congestion, noise and air quality will improve.

The news comes as a contractor is close to being announced to deliver the $110 million Douglas Arterial Duplication project funded by the Queensland and federal governments.

Albanese says the project is part of building infrastructure for the long term and will be completed in early 2012.

"The upgrade will create around 448 direct and indirect jobs and increase a current two-lane section of the Townsville Ring Road to four lanes. Once completed, the new road will better support the region's fast growing population and traffic volumes," Albanese says.

Wallace says improving existing freight routes and linking them to export facilities will support productivity and boost the Queensland and national economies.

Meanwhile, construction of another project in the northern Queensland region of Gladstone has begun.

Construction of Kirkwood Road is designed to provide access to major industrial areas and link Port Curtis Way with the Bruce Highway.

"It will provide safer, more direct access to the expanding Port of Gladstone and the Aldoga industrial development areas, taking hundreds of trucks a day out busy residential areas and off inner city roads," Albanese says.

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