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27 May, 2022

Major changes set for busy Mareeba intersection

MAJOR works are scheduled for the Mareeba Connection Road, near the Barron River bridge, with the Department of Transport and Main proposing to turn the junction into a T-intersection.

By Rhys Thomas

The plans for the new intersection were unveiled during a recent Traffic Advisory Committee meeting between Mareeba Shire Council, the department and police representatives. 

The works will include upgrades to the intersection as well as the road surface to the Barron River Bridge. At the existing intersection when travelling from Atherton to Cairns, motorists cross two lanes of traffic before turning onto the highway and continuing to the Barron River bridge. 

Under the new plans, the existing Mareeba Connection Road and Kennedy Highway intersection will become a T-intersection. However, council was hoping work was going to be done on the infamous intersection near the Centenary Park, heading down towards Coffee Works and the Kennedy Highway and National Highway 1 intersection in Mareeba. 

“That’s what we were hoping it was going to be, we’d rather the work be done there and down further at the other intersection,” Traffic Advisory Committee chair Cr Kevin Davies said. “We are just going to have to wait and see what is happening now. We didn’t even raise it (the intersection on the Mareeba Connection Road) – we want something done to the other intersections – the Mareeba, Atherton, Cairns intersection and the one near the 100 park. “We said ‘why don’t you go and do the other main intersection that way when the bypass is in, you build it so it accommodates for the bypass’.” 

While the works are being conducted, traffic will be shifted down Anzac Avenue and over the John Doyle Bridge, another risky intersection for motorists. A DTMR spokesperson said the proposed works are part of an already existing and ongoing program of upgrades to the Kennedy Highway. 

“We are also working with Mareeba Shire Council to look at options for upgrading safety near the intersection of Kennedy Highway and Mareeba-Dimbulah Road (known locally as Byrnes Street),” a spokesperson said. “This is part of an ongoing, $45 million program of upgrades on Kennedy Highway between Kuranda and Mareeba, which was announced in 2019. “We will share further details about the scope of work when it is available.”

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