A busy footbridge over the Sunshine Motorway will be enclosed in mesh to improve safety for pedestrians and prevent projectiles being thrown at drivers below.
The improvement is underway on the Havana Road footbridge in Peregian Springs which provides access for about 600 students a day to Coolum State High School.
An enclosed mesh screen will be installed to ensure students and the wider community can safely cross over the busy Sunshine Motorway each day.
The $720,000 project is jointly funded by the federal and state governments through an 80/20 arrangement.
Federal Member for Fairfax Ted O’Brien said it would provide another critical layer of safety for locals, including students and their families going to and from school each day.
“There is nothing more important locally than ensuring that Coolum State High Students can get to and from school safely, and that’s exactly what these important improvements to the Havana Road Footbridge will achieve,” Mr O’Brien said.
“This $570,000 commitment from the Federal Government is another example of our strong track record for delivering key infrastructure Sunshine Coast families need and deserve, and I acknowledge the $150,000 also contributed by the State.”
“The important safety improvements will also protect the scores of drivers on the Sunshine Motorway below from objects being thrown from the overpass.”
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The project was welcomed by Coolum State High School Principal Troy Ascott.
“It’s wonderful that our community has come together to improve this vital link to our school. I would like to thank everyone who has worked to make this wonderful upgrade possible.
“This infrastructure will support our school and our community for many years to come.”
President of the Coolum State High School P&C, Nicole Sklenars said she was delighted to hear the project was underway.
“It’s very satisfying for the Coolum High P&C to see the commencement of works to enclose the pedestrian footbridge between School and Havana Road West, with protection screening,” Ms Sklenars said.
“With around 600 students a day using this bridge, any enhancement to safety is a welcome addition. The P&C would like to ask that parents and teachers take care around the bridge as these works are finalised.”
Mr O’Brien said that the jointly funded project had been funded under the Australian Government’s commitment of $783 million to Queensland road safety improvements through the $3 billion Road Safety Program.
Works will initially be carried out during the day for about one week from 6am to 3pm, Monday to Friday, with the remainder of works to be undertaken at night from 6pm to 6am, Sunday to Thursday.
The project is expected to take up to five weeks to complete, weather and construction conditions permitting.
The pedestrian footbridge will be open outside of construction hours and drivers on the Sunshine Motorway can expect changed traffic conditions to ensure the safety of workers.