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Machinery has arrived to start works on the Bruce Highway and New Settlement Rd/Deception Bay Road interchange upgrade, north of Brisbane.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the $163.3 million project was part of the 15-year, $12.6 billion Bruce Highway Upgrade Program.

“Through this program, the Australian Government is investing massively to improve safety, flood resilience and capacity along the full length of the Bruce Highway between Brisbane and Cairns,” Mr McCormack said.

“It is the largest infrastructure program in Queensland and is delivering many vital projects such as the congestion-busting, job-creating New Settlement Rd/Deception Bay Rd interchange upgrade, which is expected to support an average of 270 direct jobs throughout its life.

“We are continuing to roll out this type of major project nationwide under our $110 billion infrastructure investment pipeline, which is laying the foundations for economic recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Federal Member for Petrie Luke Howarth said this was a project he secured funding for in his first term as an MP in 2013.

“I have been fighting for this project to be delivered every day since,” he said.

“I’m pleased to see the State Government has finally begun construction on the Deception Bay Road Overpass, it’s long overdue and it will make a huge difference to locals who commute.

“It is important, now more than ever, that we invest in infrastructure projects that help businesses and industry develop and thrive,” Mr Howarth said.

“The Australian Government has invested significantly in the projects on the southern end of the Bruce Highway that, once open to traffic, will continue to support growth in the region.”

Federal Member for Longman Terry Young said motorists using this stretch of the Bruce Highway experience significant congestion, particularly during peak hours.

“This upgrade will tackle the problem of drivers getting stuck along the existing two-lane bridge when they’re trying to get to work or home to their families,” Mr Young said.

“We need to upgrade the interchange so we can support the economy and productivity and get people home sooner and safer.”

Queensland Transport and Main Roads Director-General Neil Scales said improving the interchange would make it quicker and safer for residents, visitors and businesses to get to their destinations.

“The existing two-lane bridge at Deception Bay Road, over the highway, experiences heavy congestion during peak periods,” Mr Scales said.

“The interchange upgrade will improve traffic flow by replacing the existing bridge with two new, wider and longer bridges, plus longer and wider entry and exit ramps, and two upgraded, signalised intersections on Deception Bay Road.

“Metering signals will be installed at entry ramps to balance traffic demands with capacity as traffic enters the highway. New infrastructure for pedestrians and bike riders will also be included to safely cross the Bruce Highway and connect better to local paths.

“Delivery will require a considerable construction effort, with works expected to be ongoing into 2023.”

The $163.3 million upgrade project is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments through an 80:20 funding arrangement. The Australian Government is contributing $130.64 million and the Queensland Government is contributing $32.66 million.

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