Rockhampton Ring road

The Rockhampton Ring Road project will improve road safety and strengthen the region’s economy by improving freight efficiency, flood resilience and job opportunities. The alignment will support connectivity between key employment, leisure, tourism and residential growth areas of Rockhampton and the wider region.

A new 14.7km ring road will be delivered with a total of 17.4km of new road being constructed.

The ring road will link the Bruce Highway through Rockhampton extending from the Capricorn Highway (Nelson Street), to Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road/Bruce Highway intersection and will include a new crossing of the Fitzroy River at Pink Lily. 

The Bruce Highway is Queensland's major north-south freight and commuter corridor, connecting coastal population centres from Brisbane to Cairns over 1,677km. 

The existing Bruce Highway through Rockhampton is one of the remaining pinch points between Brisbane and Cairns, with 19 sets of traffic signals to navigate.

Traffic volumes on the Bruce Highway in Central Queensland range from 2,600 vehicles per day in rural sections to 35,000 vehicles per day in urban centres.

The Bruce Highway is a key heavy vehicle route with an average of about 2,640 heavy vehicles travelling through Rockhampton daily.

Transport and Main Roads is committed to working with the Rockhampton community and hearing your views on the Rockhampton Ring Road.

Key features

  • New crossing of the Fitzroy River.
  • Reduced congestion and improved safety through the city by providing an alternative route for heavy vehicles.
  • Improved connectivity to key facilities, services and precincts within the Rockhampton region.
  • Continued access to the road network during major flooding.


The Rockhampton Ring Road is funded through the Bruce Highway Upgrade Program.

Current status

The $65 million project to undertake the planning for the Rockhampton Ring Road is complete with the business case for the road construction project submitted to the Australian Government for approval.

The detailed design phase has started. Jacobs SMEC Design Joint Venture has been appointed to deliver the detailed design.

A series of public information sessions will be conducted in early-2021 where the preliminary design for the project will be available. Community members will have an opportunity to share their views at these sessions.

The detailed design phase has started. Jacobs SMEC Design Joint Venture have been appointed to deliver the detailed design. 

The detailed design phase will review the concept design and consider feedback received from the community, industry and stakeholders throughout the planning phase. The concept design will be refined in consideration of traffic efficiency, improved safety, increased resilience to flooding, improved connectivity  and accessibility, and environment and cultural heritage. 


Detailed design

The detailed design phase will refine the concept design in consideration of traffic efficiency, improved safety, increased resilience to flooding, improved connectivity and accessibility, and environment and cultural heritage.

A key task in this phase is to review and refine the options for the four new connections into Rockhampton city. 

Intersection options identified in the planning phase are now being optimised to ensure the Rockhampton Ring Road supports traffic efficiency and local road connectivity, while also considering broader community impacts like noise and visual amenity.


Concept design

The Rockhampton Ring Road extends from the Capricorn Highway in the south to Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road in the north.

Rural sections of road, from the Gracemere and Capricorn Highway connection through to the West Rockhampton connection, will be 2 lanes.

The new Fitzroy River crossing will be approximately 250m long, consist of 4 lanes and will extend from Pink Lily to Kawana. Urban areas, starting at the West Rockhampton connection through to the Parkhurst connection (a future growth area), dictates 4 lanes.

The Rockhampton Ring Road will improve connectivity to Rockhampton by increasing the number of access points to the city. The concept design for the Rockhampton Ring Road has been developed to provide a  high-level of flood immunity, similar to a 1 in 100 year flood event and equivalent to 9.86m on the Rockhampton flood gauge in the Fitzroy River (a 1% Annual Exceedance Probability).

The concept design includes a number of features such as bridges and culverts at key locations along the Rockhampton Ring Road to manage water flow. The concept design includes more than 6km of bridging to maintain existing flow-paths, where possible, and minimise the impacts of changes in anticipated flood levels as far as practicable.  


Ring road connections

There will be 2 new signalised intersections and 3 roundabout connections into Rockhampton via the Rockhampton Ring Road. These connections best support the current and predicted future traffic conditions across the Rockhampton region.

Traffic signals are proposed in the growth and urban areas of the Rockhampton Ring Road, between the Fitzroy River crossing to Yeppoon Road. Traffic signals allow motorists to enter and exit the ring road efficiently and integrate with the existing signalised intersection at the Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road.

The roundabouts in the rural areas, between Capricorn Highway and the Fitzroy River crossing, will provide access with minimal delays. 

Gracemere/Capricorn Highway connection

The concept design includes a new roundabout and high-level connection to the Capricorn Highway at Fairy Bower, which will maintain access during times of flooding. A roundabout at the Capricorn Highway will facilitate access and minimise flooding impacts to surrounding properties. 

West Rockhampton connection

A new connection road is included in the concept design, providing access into West Rockhampton and beyond, via a roundabout. This will provide a link to Rockhampton-Ridgelands Road, supporting connectivity to the Pink Lily, Alton Downs and Ridgelands communities.

Traffic modelling undertaken as part of the planning phase for the project identified that the state-controlled Rockhampton-Ridgelands Road can accommodate the additional traffic from the new West Rockhampton connection from the Rockhampton Ring Road.

Traffic dispersion from the West Rockhampton connection road occurs via various roads on Rockhampton’s southside to access the airport, schools, hospital and sporting and leisure facilities.

Alexandra Street connection

The concept design proposes connecting the ring road to the existing Alexandra Street, with traffic signals to control the 4-way intersection. An at-grade intersection (the existing road intersects with Rockhampton Ring Road at the same level) supports current and future traffic volumes, safety and amenity (such as noise and visual).

Parkhurst Connection

The concept design includes a new signalised intersection, connecting the ring road to the existing Bruce Highway/Rockhampton-Yeppoon Road intersection. This connection improves connectivity to the Capricorn Coast providing a direct east-west connection and supports the efficiency of north-south traffic using the Bruce Highway. 



Protecting the environment and its history is an important part of the project. We will be undertaking comprehensive environmental and cultural heritage investigations thorough the life of the project.

We recognise the significance of different culture and the importance of managing Indigenous, historical, shared and natural heritage. We will continue to work with the Darumbal People, taking into account important cultural considerations. All reasonable practical measures to avoid harming Aboriginal heritage and the conservation of places and areas entered in the Queensland Heritage Register will be taken.



The land needed to build the Rockhampton Ring Road was identified and gazetted in February 2019, impacted property owners were notified.

We have already acquired a selection of properties required to the build the Ring Road. We will continue to work with the remaining impacted property owners as the project progresses.

Find out more about land resumptions and early acquisition of properties. 

Queensland Government Department of Transport and Main Roads   16th March 2021


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