The Queensland Government is calling for construction tenders for the $34.6 million Cape River Bridge upgrade in Northern Queensland.

Queensland Minister for Main Roads and Road Safety, Mark Bailey, said the project will boost local jobs and deliver a new, higher and wider bridge and improved approaches on a 2km section of the Gregory Developmental Road.

“We have made excellent progress on the planning and design of this vital flood immunity project,” Mr Bailey said.

“The tender for the supply of bridge piles was awarded to Rockhampton-based company Stresscrete earlier this month and we expect to award the construction contract early next year.”

Queensland Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland, Coralee O’Rourke, said the Cape River Bridge upgrade will improve road safety and accessibility between Emerald and Charters Towers.

“We’ll see significant reductions in road closures due to flooding when this project is complete,” Ms O’Rourke said.

“This means improved year-round freight access to inland communities and the Townsville Port, as well as safer and better driving conditions for locals.”

Ms O’Rourke said the upgrade is part of the Queensland Government’s $77 million investment in the Gregory Developmental Road over the next three years.

“In addition to the Cape River Bridge Upgrade, we will spend more than $42 million to widen and strengthen 34km of remaining single lane and narrow two-lane sections north of Charters Towers,” Ms O’Rourke said.

“We are committed to improving the inland highway to ensure it is safe and dependable for local residents, the freight, mining and agricultural industries, and tourists.”

Construction of the Cape River Bridge upgrade is expected to start in April 2017 and be completed by mid-2018.

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