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Milestone for $1b bypass: project expected to be completed next year

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Work is progressing on the $1b Gympie bypass, which will enable travellers to skirt the town and ease congestion within it by late next year.

Construction is well underway on the bypass, which is officially known as the Bruce Highway Upgrade – Cooroy to Curra, Section D.

The bypass should enable long-range travellers to avoid 53 intersections and 106 property accesses.

It’s also set to ease traffic in the town, with half the amount of heavy vehicles expected on local roads.

The final concrete pile was recently poured for the project’s 42 bridge structures.

With 575 piles now in place, works on all bridges on the bypass were underway or complete.

The Keefton Road underpass, Bolcaro Road overpass, Noosa Road overpass and the recently opened Flood Road interchange bridge are now all open.

The project is jointly funded on an 80:20 basis, with the Australian Government contributing $800 million and the Queensland Government $200 million. It’s expected to be completed in late 2024, weather permitting.

The Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King said the upgrade had reached a milestone.

“The construction of these bridges is crucial to the flood immunity of the project,” she said via a State Government statement.

“When completed, this new section of the National Highway will stand 27m above the regular Mary River water height in Gympie, at its lowest point.

“The new bypass is being built to a height that would have remained operational during events like the devastating floods of early 2022.”

Construction of one of the bridges.

Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the bridges would be a major part of the new route.

“There are 42 bridges at 23 locations throughout the 26km Gympie bypass project,” he said.

“If each of the 575 piles were placed end to end, it would span over 5km.

“This is over 15 times taller than Q1 in Surfers Paradise (Australia’s tallest building at 322.5m).

“The bridges will cross waterways, the North Coast Rail line and local roads.

“The project will also deliver a safer, more comfortable highway experience with two lanes travelling in each direction separated by a concrete median.”

Bypass plans include new roads and bridges.

The Federal Assistant Minister for Regional Development Anthony Chisholm said the bypass would be of benefit to Gympie and travellers.

“Infrastructure projects like this will assist in providing continual access to crucial services for the Gympie region,” he said.

“The Australian Government is proud to partner with the Queensland Government to deliver much-needed infrastructure.

“The bypass will increase efficiency and reliability of the Bruce Highway.”

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