Early works on the congestion-busting $359 million Captain Cook Highway upgrade project will commence this year.
The $359 million Captain Cook Highway project is jointly funded with the Australian Government committing $287.2 million and the Queensland Government committing $71.8 million.
The Australian Government recently added the Captain Cook Highway from Cairns CBD to Smithfield to the National Land Transport Network.
The addition to the NLTN recognised the critical importance of the road in providing a connection to the Cairns Airport and supporting freight movements across Far North Queensland.
Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Enstch said the Captain Cook Highway early works package will commence in September 2021.
“This is a critical project that I am immensely pleased to be able to have delivered for the Cairns community,” Mr Entsch said.
“It will be fantastic to see shovels in the ground on this much-needed project because that means local jobs which are very important in the current environment.
“The early works package will deliver safety, capacity and connectivity improvements on the section of Captain Cook Highway between Airport Avenue and James Street.
“The works include installation of an additional inbound lane on Captain Cook Highway between Moffat Street and Lily St, the closure of some existing median breaks on Sheridan Street and intersection upgrades.”
Mr Entsch said the Major Construction Business Case for the larger package of works from Airport Drive to Smithfield is due for completion by mid-2022.
“The Captain Cook Highway upgrades will reduce congestion, improve freight efficiency and access to gateways while also improving road safety,” he said.
“The project will deliver significant and improved upgrades along the Captain Cook Highway, from the Cairns CBD to Smithfield.
“But more importantly, it will bust congestion, especially during morning and afternoon peak hours along the route for the 45,000 motorists who use the road daily.
“This means that instead of sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic, motorists will be able to get home sooner and faster to spend more time with their family and loved ones.”
The successful tender to develop the Major Construction Business Case was recently awarded to ACEOM.
The Major Construction Business Case will include extensive planning, scoping work, and detailed design work.
It will also include the staged approach options for construction and timeframes for each stage.
Once the business case is completed, the project will be put to tender, with construction expected to commence in late-2022, weather permitting.