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Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade

We’re improving traffic flow in the heart of the Gold Coast so you can spend less time on the road, and more time enjoying our beautiful city.

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Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive Upgrade

Commencing: Late August 2019
Completion: Late 2021
Cost: $34 million

We’re improving traffic flow in the heart of the Gold Coast so you can spend less time on the road, and more time enjoying our beautiful city.

As the gateway to a number of popular cultural precincts, the Sundale Bridge, Gold Coast Highway, Waterways Drive and Macarthur Parade experienced significant congestion.

To help keep traffic moving, we’re delivering a number of upgrades to expand network capacity along this popular route. This includes adding a fifth lane on the Sundale Bridge, and upgrading Waterways Drive, Macarthur Parade and associated intersections. We’re also working to improve traffic flow along the coastal route by increasing capacity on the Gold Coast Highway between Main Beach and Southport.

Once the project is complete, it’s projected that trips from The Spit to Southport will be reduced to around 8 minutes during peak times.

This project is part of our ongoing investment in the Gold Coast's road network.

Download: Sundale Bridge and Waterways Drive upgrade FAQs (PDF 1.8mb)

Project benefits

  • Improved traffic flow, reduced congestion and greater network capacity
  • Improved pedestrian, cyclist and driver safety

Sundale Bridge works: mid-2021*

We’re increasing network capacity on the Sundale Bridge by adding a third northbound lane. This will help to keep northbound traffic moving on the Gold Coast Highway, a major road linking the northern suburbs, the M1 and Brisbane.

We’ll do this by removing the old pedestrian path (and redundant street lighting) from the eastern side of the bridge to create the additional northbound lane. Pedestrian and cyclist access will be maintained via the adjacent Sundale green bridge. The bridge lighting on the western side will be upgraded and the stairs accessing the old path will be removed for safety.

To further improve bridge safety, we’re upgrading the guardrails, reducing the speed limit to 60 kilometres per hour and installing an additional early warning flashing light to alert southbound travellers that they’re approaching traffic signals.

Waterways Drive and Gold Coast Highway intersection works: July 2020 to early 2021*

We’re adding a third right-turn lane from Waterways Drive onto the Gold Coast Highway. Along with the additional lane on the bridge, this will improve peak traffic flow for people travelling from The Spit to Southport.

Clearing northbound traffic faster off Waterways Drive and the Sundale Bridge enables us to allocate more green time for people heading south on the Gold Coast Highway. This helps to also improve southbound traffic flow.

These works also include some storm water drainage upgrades.

Gold Coast Highway works: early to late 2021

To help keep northbound traffic moving beyond the bridge, we’re creating a third northbound lane on the Gold Coast Highway from Australia Fair to North Street, Southport. Works will be delivered in stages to minimise impacts.

Macarthur Parade/Seaworld Drive intersection works: complete

We’ve converted the Macarthur Parade and Seaworld Drive roundabout into a signalised T-intersection with signalised pedestrian crossings to improve network capacity and pedestrian and cyclist safety. This also includes some storm water drainage upgrade works.

To improve traffic flow, the new signalised T-intersection will utilise in-ground sensors. The information from the sensors is used to manage the operation of the intersection and coordinate with the wider traffic network to minimise delays.

Path upgrades Macarthur Parade and Proud Park: complete

We’ve upgraded the path network on Macarthur Parade between Main Beach Parade and Stafford Avenue, and continued the new 2.5 metre wide shared path in Proud Park and added path lighting (LED lights facing towards Waterways Drive and mounted on 6 metre poles). This helps to encourage walking and cycling and serves to improve our active transport network.

Rankin Parade/Helen Park works: complete

We’ve made it even easier to walk or cycle from the Tedder Avenue light rail station to the waterfront by building a new 3 metre wide shared path from Tedder Avenue (running along the western side of Helen Park) to Waterways Drive.

The existing leisurely path that meanders through the trees was retained.

Gold Coast Highway (Marine Parade) extension of third northbound lane: completion late 2021

We’re adding a third northbound lane along the Gold Coast Highway (Marine Parade), between Australia Fair and North Street, Southport to improve traffic flow.

*Timings subject to change.

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What’s changing?

During this time, there’ll be minor changes to how you access the transport network in the area. We’ve outlined the changes below. At times there’ll be additional impacts, we’ll do our best to let you know of upcoming changes by updating this page.

We encourage all road users to take extra care when workers are in the area and observe traffic signs and speed restrictions.

  • Road access: access will be maintained so you can continue to enjoy the beautiful beaches and destinations in the area. However, there will be a reduced speed limit around the works area and some lane closures at times. Please also be advised that there's a 40km speed limit and narrower lanes on the Sundale Bridge during works. Allow a little more travel time, or retime your trip, to avoid delays.
  • Pedestrian and cyclist access:
    • Sundale Bridge: off–road pedestrian and cyclist access to cross the Nerang River will be maintained via the 5 metre wide Sundale green bridge. However, the road shoulder in both directions will be temporarily removed during construction (and permanently reduced to 0.5 metres to create the additional lane). Confident cyclists can utilise the traffic lanes.
    • Waterways Drive: off-road pedestrian and cyclist access will be maintained at all times via minor diversions. There’ll be temporary removal of the on-road bike lanes during construction. Confident cyclists can ride in the traffic lanes or utilise the off-road path network.
    • Macarthur Parade/Seaworld Drive intersection: path access will be maintained but there’ll be temporary diversions at times.
  • Parking: we’re doing our best to maintain parking however at times some parking spaces will be temporarily impacted to safely deliver works. A few unmarked bays located in the shoulder on Macarthur Parade (near the existing roundabout) will be permanently impacted in order to create the new signalised T-intersection.
  • Trees: to deliver the project, we’ll need to remove some trees. A substantial effort has been made to minimise the environmental impact including consulting with an arborist, removing the minimum number of trees and undertaking tree replanting.
  • Parks: Hollindale, Proud and The Old Sea Wall Beach (OSWB) Parks will remain open but sections will be closed off at times to enable works. Hollindale and OSWB Park will also house a site compound.
  • Watercraft usage: watercraft access on the Nerang River will be maintained, however while we’re working on the bridge there’ll be a clearance zone to ensure safety. The boat ramp off Waterways Drive will remain accessible but a section of the carpark will house a site compound.
  • Noise and dust: there’ll be general noise and dust in the works area during construction. While we’re removing the kerb from the old pedestrian path on the bridge, the noise will be significantly louder. We’ll monitor this closely and do our best minimise it.
  • Public transport: light rail, bus and ferry services are not impacted by this project. Contact Translink on 13 12 30 for bus and light rail services, and for ferries.

We apologise for the inconvenience and we’ll do our best to minimise disruptions. Thank you in advance for your patience.

Construction hours

Workers will be on site Monday to Friday between 6am to 6pm. At times we’ll need to work outside of these hours and into the evening to complete the works safely and reduce the impact on road users. We’ll let you know in advance of any night works in your area.

Map of works

Project timing

The $34 million project will be delivered in stages. Proposed timing is outlined below (subject to change).

Timing Works
August – December 2019

Sundale Bridge, Macarthur Parade and Seaworld Drive intersection and Waterways Drive

  • Relocate services on the Sundale Bridge and at the Macarthur Parade/Seaworld Drive intersection.
  • Extend second eastbound lane on Waterways Drive through to Seaworld Drive, and upgrade Main Beach Parade intersection, storm water drainage and lighting.
Early 2020 – mid 2020

Macarthur Parade and Rankin Parade

  • Change roundabout at Macarthur Parade/Seaworld Drive to a signalised T-intersection.
  • Add signalised pedestrian crossing on Macarthur Parade (near the Southport Yacht Club).
  • Upgrade storm water drainage and sections of the path network (Macarthur Parade and Rankin Parade).
Mid 2020 – late 2020

Sundale Bridge and Gold Coast Highway and Waterways Drive intersection

  • Remove the old pedestrian path from the Sundale Bridge and add a third northbound lane on the bridge through to Ada Bell Way.
  • Add third right-turn lane from Waterways Drive onto Gold Coast Highway.
Early 2021 – mid 2021

Gold Coast Highway

  • Add third northbound lane on the Gold Coast Highway, Tedder Avenue to Waterways Drive.
  • Add third southbound lane on the Gold Coast Highway, Waterways Drive to Tedder Avenue.

Planning and design are underway to provide a third north-bound lane from Australia Fair through to North Street. Timing and works to be confirmed once planning is complete.

Help keep traffic moving

Help reduce congestion during works using the four Rs:

  • RE-MODE to public transport, walking or cycling.
  • RE-ROUTE to avoid congestion.
  • RE-TIME trips outside of peak times.
  • REDUCE the need to make non-essential trips.

Watch project video

More information

For more information, contact the project team on 1300 Gold Coast (1300 465 326) or email

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