Works begin on $212.6m QLD Pacific Motorway M1 Interchanges upgrades

Monica Gameng   |   July 18, 2021
Pacific Motorway M1 (cr:

Works are progressing on the $212.6 million Pacific Motorway M1 Interchange upgrades in Queensland as construction commences on the M1 Exit 41 at Yatala South and proposed plans are released for a redesigned Exit 49 at Pimpama. 

“Upgrading the M1 is a major priority for my government. 

“This is a great win for Gold Coasters. This upgrade will ease pressure off one of several key bottlenecks on the northern end of the Gold Coast – helping reduce commute times in the future. 

“We’ll continue to invest in infrastructure to create jobs and rebuild our economy,” Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said. 

The M1 interchange upgrades aim to improve safety, increase capacity as well as provide better journeys to the thousands of motorists using the Pacific Motorway M1 each day, getting them home sooner and safer. 

“The Morrison Government is getting on with delivering infrastructure projects that improve congestion and safety for commuters across Australia, making it easier for them to move around our capital cities and ensuring they get home quickly and safely. 

“Under the Urban Congestion Fund, we are delivering 178 individual packages of works nationwide. This project brings to 63 the total number of Urban Congestion Fund projects around Australia that are completed or underway. A further 59 are expected to start construction this year. 

“This is just the latest example of us delivering on our commitment to progress critical infrastructure projects across the country under our $110 billion 10-year infrastructure investment pipeline, which is helping to drive Australia’s world-leading economic recovery,” Federal Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts Paul Fletcher MP said. 

Upgrades to key exits are delivered under the Queensland Government’s record investment to help improve the M1 as well as Gold Coast transport infrastructure. 

In addition, both the Exit 41 works and the upcoming Exit 49 upgrade are anticipated to support up to 360 jobs. 

“Queensland is investing a record $27.5 billion in roads and transport projects over four years to support our COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan. 

“That investment is adding capacity to major roads and building better connections for growing communities to improve safety and ensure people spend less time stuck in traffic,” Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said. 

pacific motorway m1 yatala south interchange exit 41 concept design-1Exit 41 alignment (source: Department of Transport and Main Roads)

The Exit 41 upgrade project is just one of the several interchange upgrades planned for the M1 to help bust congestion and improve safety. 

Other exits that will be upgraded under the Pacific Motorway M1 Interchange upgrades include Exit 49 at Pimpama, Exit 45 at Ormeau – both currently in the design phase – and Exit 38 at Yatala North, which the business case was approved in 2018. 

Community consultation for the Exit 45 project is expected to commence soon. 

“By keeping work flowing on projects like these, we continue to invest in the community during this difficult period. 

“This investment is estimated to support an average of 179 direct jobs over the life of the project, when creating and maintaining jobs has never been more critical,” Federal Member for Forde Bert van Manen MP said. 

The Exit 41 project will be delivering a new bridge over the M1, providing more traffic lanes and improving traffic flow management with new traffic lights. 

“Anyone who uses Exit 41 knows how congested it gets during peak times, particularly with commercial vehicles accessing the industrial area to the west of the motorway. 

“Having traffic lights to manage traffic flow will improve capacity on on-ramps and off-ramps. 

“TMR has also listened to community feedback and added a left-turn slip lane to the southbound off-ramp to allow traffic access to Eastern Service Road without entering the interchange,” Member for Macalister Melissa McMahon said. 

According to Member for Gaven Meaghan Scanlon, the project is good news for both motorists and tradies in the Gold Coast’s growing northern region as it solves a key bottleneck and create a much-needed pipeline of construction jobs. 

“It means from the northern stretches of our city right through to the border, there’s a total of $4.8 billion being invested to build better transport, create jobs and drive our plan for economic recovery. 

“Many tradies in my community travel to the industrial area here every day, and upgrading the interchange means they’ll be able to get to their next job or home quicker and spend less time on the M1,” Ms Scanlon said. 

The beginning of construction on Exit 41 is great news for the northern Gold Coast and it is a “welcome improvement for transport operators there”. 

“Council is working with State officers to ensure our local road upgrades in that area occur at the same time so the delay and inconvenience during works is only felt once by motorists. The long-term gain will be considerable,” City of Gold Coast Deputy Mayor Donna Gates said. 

The Pacific Motorway Interchange upgrades are jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments on a 50:50 basis. The $212.6 million funding will cover $82.137 million for Exit 41, $20 million for Exit 45 and $110.463 million for Exit 49. 

TMR_Exit49_Map_FinalExit 49 alignment (source: Department of Transport and Main Roads)

Community consultation for the Exit 49 project is now underway. Preliminary design for this project can be viewed here and feedback can be provided through email ( or by calling 1800 317 373. 

Preliminary design for Exit 49 at Pimpama include: 

  • A new bridge across the M1 with dedicated northeast-bound lanes 
  • Reconfiguration of the existing bridge to accommodate southwest-bound traffic 
  • Realignment of the on and off-ramps 
  • Pedestrian and bike paths throughout the interchange to provide safe infrastructure to and from nearby shops and schools 

Final design for Exit 49 is expected to be completed this year and major construction on the project to begin early 2022. 

Source: Queensland Government – Media StatementsMinister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts; Queensland Government – Department of Transport and Main Roads (1, 2

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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