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First photos of shortcut from Caloundra to Brisbane

Independent and FREE – 2021 Best Online Publication (Qld Country Press)

First photos of shortcut from Caloundra to Brisbane


First photos of eagerly anticipated 11km shortcut from Caloundra to Brisbane

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A much-anticipated shortcut between Caloundra and the Bruce Highway that could save drivers up to 15 minutes on the drive to Brisbane is about 60 per cent finished.

New aerial photos, commissioned by Sunshine Coast News and captured by Brendan Smith of SkyShots Photography, offer a bird’s eye view of the progress of the $70 million Bells Creek Arterial Road, dubbed ‘The Arterial’.

When finished, the 11km road will provide a new access from the Bruce Highway to the Coast that will save drivers between 10 and 15 minutes of travel time between Caloundra and Brisbane.

‘The Arterial’ will cut through the heart of Aura. Picture” Brendan Smith SkyShots Photography

Starting at the roundabout on Caloundra Road, the route will cut through Stockland’s sprawling Aura master-planned community, which will eventually be home to 50,000 people.

Currently, all southbound drivers are forced to battle Caloundra Road, which has become increasingly congested.

But the new alternative route will slice through the heart of Aura and its city centre before popping out at the Roys Road exit on the Bruce Highway.

The Arterial is funded 50-50 between the State Government and Stockland.

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Bells Creek Arterial Road, in blue, will shave off 10 minutes of driving.

Stockland’s general manager, Queensland communities, David Laner, said construction had reached a milestone by passing the halfway mark.

“Construction of the Bells Creek Arterial Road is now around 60 per cent complete,” he said.

“Bells Creek Arterial Road will create a vital second access to the Bruce Highway, reducing congestion for the 50,000 motorists who use Caloundra Road and the Bruce Highway every day.

“Once in operation, we expect the new road will save about 10 minutes of travel time for people driving from Brisbane to Bells Creek, and vice versa.”

Construction of Bells Creek Arterial Road is about 60 per cent finished. Picture: Brendan Smith (SkyShots Photography)

Mr Laner said Aura’s pioneer suburbs of Bells Creek, Baringa and Nirimba would be located either side of Bells Creek Arterial Road.

It will travel through the master-planned community’s future city centre, with many shops and services located along the route.

These include retail, emergency services, bulky goods, business industry, sports facilities and broad hectare green reserves.

Image by Brendan Smith of SkyShots Photography.

State Member for Caloundra Jason Hunt said the road was a “game changer” for Caloundra and especially for the residents of Caloundra South and the nearby hinterland areas around Beerwah.

“This road will essentially move Caloundra 15 minutes closer to Brisbane and make it an even more attractive tourist destination,” said Mr Hunt.

“It’s has already played a major role in attracting investment to the area.”

The road has been built in two stages. Stage one was a 3km segment from the Caloundra Road roundabout which came to a dead end at Baringa and Nirimba.

Stage two, currently underway, extends from there to the Bruce Highway.

The timeline of construction is for completion by the end of 2022.

Picture: By Brendan Smith SkyShots Photography

Caloundra Road roundabout intersection

Meanwhile, the State Government is working out how to improve terrible traffic problems at the major Caloundra Road roundabout, both now and in the future.

The roundabout is the busy intersection of Caloundra Road, Bells Creek Arterial Road and Kawana Way Link Road.

Kawana Way Link Road will eventually connect to the proposed Kawana Motorway, which will be a new four-lane motorway parallel to, and west of, Kawana Way — between Meridan Plains and Parrearra.

Together Bells Creek Arterial Road, Kawana Way Link Road and the Kawana Motorway will form a major north-south transport corridor.

A study is underway to find a short-term fix for traffic congestion at the key roundabout intersection as well as plan for a longer-term upgrade.

The State Government says a business case is due for completion next year.

However, there are concerns the quick short-term fix under consideration might include installing traffic lights on the approaches to the roundabout.

A similar idea at the other roundabout on the Caloundra Road intersection with Nicklin Way has proven unpopular with motorists.