New Year, new changes for Queensland: RACQ

As Queenslanders prepared to ring in 2020, the State’s peak motoring body revealed a raft of new changes would come into effect in the new year.

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RACQ spokesperson Lauren Ritchie said the cost of taking a bus, train or ferry in Queensland would rise from 6 January, with adult and concession fares to increase by 1.9 percent.

“Commuters will notice fares increase between 6 cents and 12 cents a trip on most adult Go Cards. While this increase is in line with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rate, it’s still disappointing as commuters already tell us they’re frustrated by the cost of public transport,” Ms Ritchie said.

“Motorists who use the AirportlinkM7 toll road will also be hit with a CPI increase, taking the costs up to $5.66 for a car travelling between Bowen Hills and Kedron.”

Ms Ritchie said drivers caught using their mobile phones while behind the wheel would also be slapped with a $1000 fine and four demerit points from 1 February.

“Along with the fine increasing, new mobile phone detection cameras will also be rolled out across the State, increasing the chances of being caught red handed,” she said.

“We’ve had to welcome this harsher penalty as a last resort as many drivers still aren’t getting the message, but by setting your phone, then leaving it alone, you could save yourself a hefty fine, or better yet, a life.”

Ms Ritchie said the Club looked forward to work starting on several major infrastructure projects across the State, and work coming to an end on others.

“We’ll see construction progress on a number of major projects like Brisbane Metro, Cross River Rail and Coomera Connector, which is good news for Queenslanders, as we know these projects are the keys to unlocking bottlenecks.

“We are also keen to see work begin on the Bruce Highway Stage 1 upgrade from Pine Rivers to Caloundra and Cooroy to Curra Section D between Woondum and Curra to begin mid-year which will provide vital safety improvements along the deadly stretches.”

Queensland’s infrastructure projects for 2020

Brisbane:
Northern Transitway along Gympie Road will begin construction in early 2020
Ipswich Motorway – Rocklea to Darra Stage 1: Construction to continue in 2020 with expected completion early 2021
Cycle Veloway 1 Stage E project Holland Park West to Tarragindi: Construction will be completed by mid-2020
Cross River Rail: Excavation of the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) launch area and new underground station at Woolloongabba will continue in early 2020
Brisbane Metro: Construction to start on busway and the Brisbane Metro pilot vehicle should be ready for testing in 2020
Pacific Motorway/M1 upgrades: Gateway merge works will be completed in early 2020 and construction to start between Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill 
Kingsford Smith Drive: To be completed in the second half of 2020
Wynnum Road: Completion of Stage 1 and 1b works in early 2020
Queen’s Wharf Brisbane (QWB): Construction starts on main buildings in 2020
Neville Bonner Bridge (part of QWB): Construction to start in 2020.

Gold Coast:
Pacific Motorway/M1: Mudgeeraba to Varsity Lakes section to finish mid-2020
Gold Coast Light Rail Stage 3A: Contract for design and construction to be awarded in 2020
Coomera Connector: Stage 1 Coomera to Nerang reference design and business case will be developed during 2020
Pacific Motorway Oxenford Interchange Exit 57 upgrade: To be completed in 2020.

Sunshine Coast:
Bruce Highway Upgrade Pine Rivers to Caloundra Stage 1: Commences construction mid-2020
Bruce Highway Upgrade Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway: Construction is expected to be completed in late 2020
Bruce Highway Upgrade Cooroy to Curra Section D: Woondum to Curra to begin mid-2020.

Regional Queensland:
Captain Cook Highway - Smithfield Bypass: Construction to continue and is expected to be completed late 2021
Bruce Highway Cairns Southern Access Stage 4: Construction to continue through 2020 with completion mid-2021
Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade – Stage 1: To be completed in 2020
Gregory Developmental Road from Charters Towers to the Lynd: Due for completion mid/late 2020.