Work has started on the $500 million Mackay Ring Road project, with the first sod officially turned this week.
Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said the project would provide a huge boost to the Mackay economy over the next three years.
“I know that CPB Contractors, who won the bid to construct the Mackay Ring Road Stage 1, are very keen to engage with the local suppliers, subcontractors and workers in Mackay,” Mr Christensen said.
“This is a massive infrastructure project for our region and we can look forward to the flow-on effects of business dollars and job opportunities for a number of years.”
The upgrade is expected to improve travel times on the Bruce Highway through Mackay by 14 per cent by avoiding 13km of low-speed urban roadway.
The Federal Government is committing $397.9 million and the Queensland Government is committing $99.4 million to the Mackay Ring Road project, which is scheduled to be finished in early 2020.
Queensland Main Roads and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey said the Mackay Ring Road would deliver 11.3km of new road, including the first 2.6km of the Walkerston Bypass.
Thirteen new bridges will be built, including major bridge crossings on the Pioneer River and Fursden Creek, two major overpasses for the Peak Downs Highway and North Coast Rail Line, and seven minor overpasses of existing local roads and cane rail.