BRISBANE'S landmark $1.5 billion Legacy Way tunnel opened to traffic last Thursday morning, providing motorists with a with a four minute journey between the Western Freeway at Toowong and the Inner City Bypass at Kelvin Grove.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said the new 4.6-kilometre twin tunnels will reduce travel time and improve safety for motorists travelling from Brisbane's western suburbs.
"The Legacy Way project is a major investment in the Brisbane road network and an iconic piece of infrastructure for the River City," Mr Truss said.
"The project has employed thousands of people, involved international companies and created a world-class piece of infrastructure which will serve the people of Brisbane for many decades to come.
"It is a great example of the Australian Government working with Brisbane City Council to improve transport infrastructure in the city."
The Legacy Way project includes:
- Two separate parallel road tunnels, each with two lanes of traffic;
- A speed limit of 80 kilometres per hour;
- A ventilation system to manage air quality;
- Safety systems, including emergency exits, fire protection and monitoring systems; and
- A fully electronic tolling system.
Lord Mayor of Brisbane City Council, Graham Quirk said he was pleased to see the completion of The Legacy Way tunnel, which named in honour of those who served and those who passed away serving in the Australian Defence Force.
"Families of fallen soldiers will benefit from every vehicle that travels the Legacy Way tunnel, through a partnership with the charity Legacy. The tunnel logo and the Legacy torch will raise awareness of the Legacy organisation and be a lasting tribute to those who serve our country," Cr Quirk said.
"More than 7.3 million work hours by 9,000 people went into constructing Legacy Way, with some 80,000 switches tested during the final commissioning phase.
"Legacy Way is an important new capacity-building addition to Brisbane's road network, which will relieve pressure on other surface roads such as Milton Road and Coronation Drive."
The Legacy Way project was jointly funded with the Australian Government contributing $500 million and Brisbane City Council providing more than $1 billion. The project was designed and constructed by Transcity, which involved BMD Constructions, Italian company Ghella and Spanish company Acciona.