The Hon Michael McCormack MP
Deputy Prime Minister
Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development
Leader of The Nationals
Federal Member for Riverina
The Hon Michelle Landry MP
Assistant Minister for Children and Families
Assistant Minister for Northern Australia
Federal Member for Capricornia
George Christensen MP
Federal Member for Dawson
The Hon Mark Bailey MP
Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads
State Member for Miller
Today marks a significant milestone for Queensland’s road network with the Eton Range Realignment, west of Mackay, now open to traffic.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Australian Government committed $166.17 million to the upgrade in recognition of its importance to major transport and mine industries that are vital to local communities in the Mackay region as well as the entire Queensland economy.
“This is a significant upgrade to a critical part of the Peak Downs Highway, which will address safety and congestion concerns while better connecting communities to the west of Mackay,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
“This upgrade will encourage even more investment in the region as it will improve the connection between the Bowen and Galilee Basin coal mines and Mackay businesses.”
“We are investing in our post-pandemic future by delivering lasting infrastructure which will kick-start our economic recovery and benefit Australians for years to come.”
Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey said the road over Eton Range has been widened and split in some parts, with a partial realignment and the gradient reduced from 11.5 per cent to 7.5 per cent.
“It’s a massive improvement for heavy and oversize vehicles moving freight and equipment between the mining areas in the west and the major port infrastructure and service facilities in and around Mackay,” Mr Bailey said.
“The Queensland Government’s $23.09 million contribution reflects Eton Range’s importance on the state’s Strategic Road Network and its importance to the economy of Mackay and Queensland.”
“This project was an engineering challenge with a reinforced embankment, measuring 780 metres long and 45 metres high at its highest point.”
Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said introducing four lanes over the crossing, separated in some parts, greatly reduced the need for closures during oversize vehicle movements or other road incidents.
“An estimated 5,000 vehicles cross the range each day and the gentler gradient and large-radius corners will help control speed, while fewer delays will make the road safer for all motorists,” Ms Landry said.
Federal Member for Dawson George Christensen said the grade reduction and other measures to help control approach and departure speeds meant the road can now accommodate type 1 road trains through the Eton Range.
“The Mackay region has a lot to be excited about with the completion of this project, paired with the recent completion of the jointly funded $497.9 million Mackay Ring Road – Stage 1 project,” Mr Christensen said.
The Eton Range Realignment project supported an average of 295 direct jobs over the life of the project, at a time when jobs are needed during this difficult period.
It will continue to make an economic contribution by complementing the benefits of other local road projects such as the Mackay Ring Road and Walkerston Bypass.
For further information on the Eton Range Realignment, visit www.tmr.qld.gov.au/projects/eton-range-realignment-project.
The $189.26 million project was jointly funded by the Australian Government committing $166.17 million and the Queensland Government committing the remaining $23.09 million.