VIDEO: First look at major M1 upgrade
A video has been released giving Gold Coasters their first look at the new M1 Varsity Lakes to Tugun upgrade, including massively improved east-west connections across the Pacific Motorway.
The upgrade will include a new northbound carriageway across the Mudgeeraba Creek, the city's first "Diverging Diamond Interchange", more lanes and upgrades to the Burleigh Heads, Tallebudgera and Palm Beach exits.
Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Minister Alan Tudge said the vital piece of infrastructure would bust congestion and better connect communities in the region.
"Shovels will hit the ground next year on the project, which will be delivered in three packages," Mr Tudge said.
"It's expected this will create more than 800 jobs and be five times the size of the current M1 upgrade at Mudgeeraba."
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the upgrade was part of the Queensland Government's jointly-funded $2.3 billion commitment to building a better M1 and supporting more than 2000 jobs during construction.
"Close to 150,000 Queenslanders are seeing progress on the M1 every day," Mr Bailey said.
"The Queensland Government is building a better M1, and we're gearing up for the future with our plans for the Coomera Connector and a future rail corridor as part of this $1 billion upgrade."
McPherson MP Karen Andrews said the upgrades to the Coast's southern stretch of the M1 were vital for improving freight efficiency and getting locals home sooner and safer.
"I'm not interested in just pushing the bottleneck further south, we need to fix the M1 all the way through to Tugun, and that's what we're doing," Ms Andrews said.
"Just last week, the Morrison Government announced $45 million of Federal funding will be brought forward to fast-track those works."
The upgrade will also include:
* Building a new service road bridge over Tallebudgera Creek connecting a new western service road (one lane each way) between Palm Beach (Exit 92) and Tallebudgera (Exit 89)
* Installing Smart Motorway technologies (traffic signals) between Varsity Lakes (Exit 85) and Tugun (Exit 95), and retrofitting these technologies between Nerang and Mudgeeraba.
* Preserving the corridor for a future rail extension south of Varsity Lakes.
Significant environmental improvements will also feature in the upgrade.
A passage will be built under the Motorway to reconnect fauna to the Burleigh to Springbrook bioregional wildlife corridor, improve fish passage in waterways and through culverts, fauna fencing, and koala habitat and fodder tree plantings.