The Premier announces a second Bruce Highway for Queensland

 
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

On the campaign trail today in Townsville, the Queensland Premier Anastacia Palaszczuk has announced an upgrade of the inland highway corridor between Mungindi on the NSW Border and Charters Towers on the Flinders Highway in North Queensland.

Primary goals of the upgrade is to offer an alternative corridor during coastal flooding events and reduce trucks on the Bruce Highway.

The LNP Opposition has previously announced a policy to four-lane the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns.

Today's announcement may have serious ramifications for QR's North Coast Line,  as the inland road will allow multi trailer road trains to compete directly with the NCL for the first time. This has proven disastrous for rail market share on other freight corridors in Queensland.

https://www.trucksales.com.au/editorial/details/second-bruce-highway-126907/

Sponsored advertisement

  Expost Deputy Commissioner

Fix the bloody first one first.
  fzr560 Chief Train Controller

The second Bruce Hwy would be just for Queenslanders, like the hospitals.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
This could have just as easily come in under the Queensland election thread and kept everything together.

Sure its a good idea to separate the trucks and give them a separate route south to Victoria. It may even eventually work in with the inland rail.
Deb Frecklington has about as much chance of winning as Trump has after 4 lanes to Cairns promises.

What exactly is actually wrong with the existing Bruce Highway, or are some people serial whingers Question

Mike.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
On the campaign trail today in Townsville, the Queensland Premier Anastacia Palaszczuk has announced an upgrade of the inland highway corridor between Mungindi on the NSW Border and Charters Towers on the Flinders Highway in North Queensland.

Primary goals of the upgrade is to offer an alternative corridor during coastal flooding events and reduce trucks on the Bruce Highway.

The LNP Opposition has previously announced a policy to four-lane the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns.

Today's announcement may have serious ramifications for QR's North Coast Line,  as the inland road will allow multi trailer road trains to compete directly with the NCL for the first time. This has proven disastrous for rail market share on other freight corridors in Queensland.

https://www.trucksales.com.au/editorial/details/second-bruce-highway-126907/
Sulla1
The 4 lane coast road wll never happen, look how long it took to do Sydney - Brisbane.

It would take many years to bring the inland option up to standard.

The Qld NCL is long-haul where rail is far more competitive and of similar distance to the Inland. Alot of the NCL corridor freight is Brisbane port bound, not sure how an inland road would compete.

When I was in Gladstone we at times freighted to Rocky to go via B-double to Melbourne within 24h of leaving Rocky.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Extend Inland rail to the northern part of Queensland is what is really required not another highway. DUMB AS
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Extend Inland rail to the northern part of Queensland is what is really required not another highway. DUMB AS
bevans
No, the money doesn't stack up for the volumes which is scattered, that's why the Gladstone extension has been dropped.

Better to improve the transshipment in Brisbane and access for freights through Brisbane and Sunny Coast.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Extend Inland rail to the northern part of Queensland is what is really required not another highway. DUMB AS
No, the money doesn't stack up for the volumes which is scattered, that's why the Gladstone extension has been dropped.

Better to improve the transshipment in Brisbane and access for freights through Brisbane and Sunny Coast.
RTT_Rules

Ok.

Then how could a new highway stack up?
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

Highways always stack up because regional voters have to use them.

Queensland elections are won and lost in regional Queensland, that's why both leaders have spent three of the last eight days in Townsville.
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Extend Inland rail to the northern part of Queensland is what is really required not another highway. DUMB AS
No, the money doesn't stack up for the volumes which is scattered, that's why the Gladstone extension has been dropped.

Better to improve the transshipment in Brisbane and access for freights through Brisbane and Sunny Coast.

Ok.

Then how could a new highway stack up?
bevans
Its not a new highway, its an upgrade.
  M636C Minister for Railways

Highways always stack up because regional voters have to use them.

Queensland elections are won and lost in regional Queensland, that's why both leaders have spent three of the last eight days in Townsville.
Sulla1
It was ever thus...

The Inland Railway passes through every National Party electorate in NSW.

I believe that the current Pacific Highway upgrade has already effectively removed the need for the inland railway, combined with road improvements in Western Sydney that provide a faster truck bypass.

You just have to look at the Ballina bypass, and the new high level bridges bypassing small towns like Maclean and Nambucca Heads to see how much faster trucks can get from Sydney to Brisbane.

For years, the Newell Highway made a right angle turn just north of the level crossing in Grong Grong. A couple of years ago, a proper curve was put in since 90% of the traffic was West to North and Vice Versa.

I used that road travelling from Adelaide to Canberra. I may have been the only non local to turn right over the level crossing (which is now a lot safer...)

There are already a number of good inland roads which parallel the Bruce Highway and carry much less traffic.

There is room for another.

Peter
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Highways always stack up because regional voters have to use them.

Queensland elections are won and lost in regional Queensland, that's why both leaders have spent three of the last eight days in Townsville.
It was ever thus...

The Inland Railway passes through every National Party electorate in NSW.

I believe that the current Pacific Highway upgrade has already effectively removed the need for the inland railway, combined with road improvements in Western Sydney that provide a faster truck bypass.

You just have to look at the Ballina bypass, and the new high level bridges bypassing small towns like Maclean and Nambucca Heads to see how much faster trucks can get from Sydney to Brisbane.

For years, the Newell Highway made a right angle turn just north of the level crossing in Grong Grong. A couple of years ago, a proper curve was put in since 90% of the traffic was West to North and Vice Versa.

I used that road travelling from Adelaide to Canberra. I may have been the only non local to turn right over the level crossing (which is now a lot safer...)

There are already a number of good inland roads which parallel the Bruce Highway and carry much less traffic.

There is room for another.

Peter
M636C
Rural highways carry the bulk of inland goods and people. Trains either just run through or are moving a very narrow band of bulk goods such as rocks and grain or in limited numbers, containers. The days of carrying beer to the pubs are long gone.

There won't be another highway and nor is there justification to do so, just upgrade.

The Newell / Leichardt highways are a major corridor from Victoria through the populated centres of central NSW to Toowoomba, Gladstone and Rocky. Trucks from FNQ normally follow the Bruce to Rocky and then head inland if headed to central, southern NSW or Vic/SA. Its been a few years since I drove this way, but it wasn't half bad then and far from busy. I remember moving to Gladstone up the Leichardt sitting on 140km/h neat Taroom because I had not passed anything in ages and a white Landcruiser came from behind me and passed me, yes police car.

There is another highway in between Bruce and Leichhardt via Monto that connects Rocky to Western Brisbane, its not a bad drive but slower than the Bruce highway. Certainly worth taking if you have the time, I don't think its suited for the larger trucks.

The Carnarvon Highway further inland runs from Townsville inland via Emerald, Roma, but then you head east to Miles and connect to the Leichardt.  

Every person in CQ and FNQ is well versed with the Bruce highway closures and damage following decent wet season weather and the highway does it closed to heavy vehicle traffic during such events, so an alternative route is not a bad idea. The problem with inland routes is that when it rains, everything goes under. So bridges and low lying areas will need to be raised.

The Pac highway upgrade didn't mitigate the Inland Railway, it was a safety requirement. The quadding of the Pac highway has been a work in progress since before the Inland was given the go ahead during the Howard era.
  Expost Deputy Commissioner

The highway you are thinking of RTT, is the Burnett Hwy. Runs from Rocky to just west of Ipswich. Pretty twisty in parts.

Whats wrong with the Bruce Hwy, someone asked. North of Gympie, its basically one lane each way, with some passing lanes. Succeptable to flooding, especially the further north you go. Around Gladstone to Rocky, they are rebuilding it, again, and its taking forever. They have now embarked on a road widening scheme. They chew the edges back about 6-10 metres, and put in a 1 metre strip in the centre between the two lanes. But when they get to a bridge, it doesnt get widened, so its back to the 2 narrow lanes. And its not unusual for patching to occur within weeks, sometimes even days, along the join between old and new bitumen. Not enough rest areas, or even pull over areas. Oh yes, there have been a couple of star projects, the Yeppen Flood Plain bridge, just south of Rocky, the removal of The Big Dipper north of Gin Gin. But for the traffic numbers, and types, its a bloody dangerous road, especially given its supposed to be part of the national A1 highway.

Take for example, Bobs Creek, between Archer and Midgee, (Rocky to Mt Larcom) About 6 months ago, a B Double crashed off the side of the bridge, falling into the dry creek bed, killing the driver. The accident took out the armco on the approach to the bridge, and about half the bridge railing itself. For about a month, traffic controllers had one lane closed, and were stop/going traffic via one lane. Since then, its been one lane each was, bollards everywhere, and a 40kph restriction. No effort has gone into repairs. Unknown how long that situation will last.

Its amazing to see, the quality of the job done to the roads in the SE corner. I have personally witnessed the median strip on the M1 somewhere between Caloundra and Bribie Island turnoffs being turfed. Up here in CQ, we are lucky to get hydroturf. Further north, they contend with mud.
  Sunbird Station Master

There is a lot of politics going on at the moment but this proposal for a second Bruce is just an upgrade of an existing path known in caravanning circles as the "Great Inland Way".
The former LNP government proposed something similar at the 2015 election and now Labor has adopted it as a more realistic alternative to massively upgrading the Bruce.
This path is used by many Sydney based grey nomads to travel up to North Queensland. They leave the New England highway at Quirindi travelling through Gunnedah to meet the Newell highway at Narrabri then further north they branch off the Newell to cross the border further west at Mungindi.
Mungindi is of course the start of Labors second Bruce and it has always seemed to me the logical path for trucks travelling between Sydney and NQ.
People shouldn't think of this second Bruce proposal as a new road from NQ to Brisbane but rather a faster more direct path between NQ and Sydney bypassing the whole crowded coastal strip including Brisbane.
The rail lobby won't like it but I think it's inevitable the federal government will fund an upgrade of this route for high productivity vehicles or HPV's.
In the future I expect to see A doubles and B triples (about 4 TEU) travelling directly between Sydney and Townsville along this path.
  Sulla1 Chief Commissioner

It's also important to remember the North Queensland economy is larger than South Australia's and the Bruce Highway is the primary north-south road corridor for most of the freight that economy generates.

1.3-million people live between Gympie and Cairns and between these two cities, the Bruce Highway has 1,465-km of two lane roadway and 48km of four lane - mostly within the urban areas of Rockhampton, Townsville and Cairns. There are currently more overtaking lanes in the 381km section between Gympie and Rockhampton than the 717km between Rockhampton and Townsville - despite traffic volumes equal to or exceeding that on the southern sections.

Gympie to Maryborough is currently seeing 9,000-vehicles per day, however in the north volumes between Ayr and Townville reach 12,000 vehicles per day; Townsville to Ingham 14,000 vehicles per day; and Innisfail to Cairns 16,000 vehicles per day. The Federal Government is currently funding large scale highway duplication projects in Victoria and Tasmania for highways carrying 6,000-vehicles per day.

More than 200 people die each year on the Bruce Highway between Gympie and Cairns - that's the same as a Boeing 737 crashing. A northern commuter on the Bruce Highway has a greater chance of being killed driving to work than anyone else in Australia.

The Bruce Highway is now heavily populated with slower moving vehicles, mostly caravans and campervans, these tend to create long lines of traffic that then lead to dangerous or deadly overtaking situations - my drive from Rockhampton to Townsville this morning saw an overtaking vehicle refuse to yield to oncoming traffic resulting in three vehicles abreast on a two lane road...just another day on the highway.

Highway amplification or duplication is needed on mutliple sections of the Bruce Highway - Curra to Apple Tree Creek; Mt Larcom to Rockhampton; Sarina to Mackay; Ayr to Townsville; Townsville to Rollingstone; Innisfail to Cairns. The parallel Inland route will have limited impact on these sections, as these are primarily commuter corridors.
  WimbledonW Train Controller

Location: Sydney
Since a king of Scotland was called Robert the Bruce, maybe the second Bruce Highway should be called the Robert Highway. Any other suggestions? This should please a lot of Australians who have Scottish descent.
  Graham4405 Minister for Railways

Location: Dalby Qld
Since a king of Scotland was called Robert the Bruce, maybe the second Bruce Highway should be called the Robert Highway. Any other suggestions? This should please a lot of Australians who have Scottish descent.
WimbledonW
The northern part of this route is the Gregory Hwy (Springsure - Charter's Towers), the southern part is the Carnarvon Hwy (Mungindi - Rolleston), with Rolleston - Springsure being the Dawson Hwy. There is no need for a new name, but as mentioned above the route could be called "The Inland Way".
  Big J Deputy Commissioner

Location: In Paradise
This could have just as easily come in under the Queensland election thread and kept everything together.

Sure its a good idea to separate the trucks and give them a separate route south to Victoria. It may even eventually work in with the inland rail.
Deb Frecklington has about as much chance of winning as Trump has after 4 lanes to Cairns promises.

What exactly is actually wrong with the existing Bruce Highway, or are some people serial whingers Question

Mike.
The Vinelander
I agree with the chances for both proposals, is a wont be completed in my lifetime promises.

However, for your last line, have you driven had the opportunity to drive from Brisbane to Cairns?

I have driven the highways down south, to put it nicely, there is a contrast. I realise that there is differences in population and distances in Vic and NSW, however as posted about Qld has a very high level of decentralisation, so there is a higher reliance on the A1.

Come for a drive. If you have already, then share your experience compared say the Newell or the pacific/Princess Highways?
  apw5910 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Location: Location.
Come for a drive. If you have already, then share your experience compared say the Newell or the pacific/Princess Highways?
Big J
That's the Princes Highway. Used to be the Prince's Highway, but nobody knows how to do apostrophes correctly anymore, so they dropped it. Then we got the literal "Princess" spelling, which I've even seen in government presentations!
  RTT_Rules Oliver Bullied, CME

Location: Dubai UAE
Come for a drive. If you have already, then share your experience compared say the Newell or the pacific/Princess Highways?
That's the Princes Highway. Used to be the Prince's Highway, but nobody knows how to do apostrophes correctly anymore, so they dropped it. Then we got the literal "Princess" spelling, which I've even seen in government presentations!
apw5910
Ok wow, I thought it was called the Princess Highway.
  phil_48 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Wynnum North
My last drive Brisbane to Townsville was 2008.  Got stuck at Mackay waiting for floods to go down at Proserpine, Bowen, Ayr-Townsville.  From then on used the Motorail attached to the Sunlander till the Sunlander died in 2014.  Refuse to use the CTT.
  Big J Deputy Commissioner

Location: In Paradise
Come for a drive. If you have already, then share your experience compared say the Newell or the pacific/Princess Highways?
That's the Princes Highway. Used to be the Prince's Highway, but nobody knows how to do apostrophes correctly anymore, so they dropped it. Then we got the literal "Princess" spelling, which I've even seen in government presentations!
Ok wow, I thought it was called the Princess Highway.
RTT_Rules
Same here!

I am never too old to learn.

Sponsored advertisement

Display from: