From patching potholes to planning the Pacific Motorway, Main Roads continued to meet its commitment to deliver real benefits from improved roads infrastructure to the people of Queensland.
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Queensland's Department of Transport was restructured in 1990 to incorporate the functions of the Main Roads Department, the Department of Harbours and Marine, and the Department of Transport. The Department of Transport was split again after the March 1996 election into the Department of Transport and Department of Main Roads.
Construction of the Yandina bypass commenced in 1995 and completed in the 1996–1997 financial year.

Yandina Bypass beginning construction

Yandina Bypass under construction

In September 1990 official opening of the Les Baker Bridge over Burnett River at Gayndah.

Official opening of Les Baker Bridge over Burnett River at Gayndah by the Hon Tom Burns, Deputy Premier and Minister for Housing.

Construction began on what was considered Queensland’s single largest road project, the $630m Pacific Motorway, which will provide the state’s two biggest cities (Brisbane to Gold Coast) with a world-class link. 

Pacific Motorway under construction

Logan Motorway Interchange

$42m duplications of the Pacific Highway between Reedy Creek and Tugun were completed, relieving congestion and improving traffic conditions on Gold Coast roads.

The Pacific Motorway Learnings

Introduction of the Driver Reviver rest stops ensured roadside rest areas and stopping places had adequate facilities to help reduce fatigue-related road crashes.

Queensland Transport Driver Reviver Rest Stop

The Roads Implementation Program 1996–1997 to 2000–2001 was tabled in Parliament in November 1996. It outlined funding for committed road projects for the first 2 years and provided indicative works program allocations for the following 3 years.

Roads Implementation Program Report with Roads Programs Officer Heather Byrnes

Floods of 1997 caused considerable damage to roads in the far north-west. Construction to fix roads was extensive.

Close up of road damage on the Diamantina Developmental road 30 km from Mt Isa

Work continued on many sections of the Bruce Highway, Barkly Highway and Cunningham Highway. 

Bruce Highway under construction overtaking lane facility north of Maryborough south of Appletree Creek on the Bruce Highway

Barkly Highway

The introduction of 40km/h school speed zones came into effect in Queensland in 2012 to help protect children during the school drop off and pick up times.

School crossing

Bikeways along the Brisbane River began construction. 

Bikeway Board Inspecting Bikeway under construction from Victoria Bridge to Commercial Rowing Club

Timber deck bikeway, under construction along side the Cultural Centre

Cloncurry River Bridge on Barkly highway – part of the Nation Highway project with Federal Government Funding .

Cloncurry River Bridge on the Barkly highway

Launched an equal employment opportunity plan designed to ensure the workplace is free from harassment, discrimination and unfair treatment.
Sustainable environmental management remained one of our highest corporate priorities throughout the 1990s. An Environmental Management System was implemented that ensured environmental considerations are assessed and managed at each stage of a project, from road concept planning through to delivery and ongoing maintenance.

Environmental testing at Herston Laboratory, Senior Testing Officer Brad Woodgate performs an acid sulfate analysis as part of environmental testing of soil at Herston Laboratory

Tully- Mission Beach Road part of the Cassowary management strategy

Cassowary preservation, Wongaling Creek Bridge

Road sign for notification of environmental area

The department has a long and proud history of working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to increase economic participation and build capability. Community partnership projects, workforce renewal strategies, training and employment initiatives and targeted education programs were and continue to be a strong focus. Road building is an essential source of jobs in remote Indigenous communities, improving quality of life and self-sufficiency.
Providing local community members with apprentice and trainee opportunities was a high priority.
In the late 1990s, the department employed Cultural Heritage and Native Title Liaison Officers. These officers facilitate discussions between indigenous people and Main Roads staff so they can negotiate processes to resolve roads planning and construction issues.

Cultural Heritage and Native Title Liaison Officers – Former Director-General of Main Roads Department (Dave Stewart) pictured 4th from the left standing. 

Training at Yarrabah

Traffic management capacity continued to improve by upgrading traffic management systems, improving incident detection and response and congestion management during construction and maintenance work. The department started trialling a bus priority traffic system to provide up to the minute passenger information at specific stops. 

Escort vehicle

Variable Message Sign

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