A new road project linking Queensland and New South Wales has reduced traffic
congestion and slashed travel times for interstate travellers. The Tugun Bypass
is a seven kilometre road link between Currumbin on the Gold Coast and Tweed
Heads in northern NSW.
"Finally, the long-suffering motorists of the southern Gold Coast will get some
permanent relief from the congestion and traffic snarls that had become an
all-too-common feature of the Gold Coast Highway along the Tugun stretch," Main
Roads Minister Warren Pitt said at the time of the bypass opening in June.
PacificLink Alliance, comprising Queensland Main Roads, Abigroup Contractors Pty
Ltd and SMEC Australia Pty Ltd was appointed to design and construct the bypass.
Work began in mid-2006 and culminated with the opening of the bypass on 3 June,
2008, six months ahead of schedule.
A 334-metre tunnel underneath the Gold Coast Airport's runway extension is the
centrepiece of the bypass.
Making sure that the tunnel is adequately ventilated, 18 Banana Jet fans have
been supplied through Fantech.
“We represent Witt & Sohn of Pinneburg Germany who are the world leaders in this
type of fan,” Fantech Sales Engineer Lance Reeve said. “Our role was to supply
Pacific Alliance with technical advice, installation procedures and final
“The Banana Jet fans have an impeller diameter of 1,250 millimetres and a 50
kilowatt motor. They were selected over the traditional jet fan because they are
able to achieve a significant increase in air velocity with the same nominal
thrust and motor power,” he said.
Mr Reeve said the unique design of the Banana Jet improved the flow and the air
velocity profile in the tunnel. It distributes the flow more uniformly by
focusing the impulse towards the middle of the tunnel and reduces the losses in
critical friction areas. He said investment costs were reduced with fewer fans
required and subsequently reduced installation and cabling costs. This has flow
on effects with less maintenance and lower overall power consumption.
Queensland Premier Anna Bligh said at the opening of the Tugun Bypass that the
new road was designed to take account of future growth.
“The bypass is expected to carry between 35,000 and 40,000 vehicles per day, but
has the capacity to carry the expected increase of 60,000 vehicles per day by
2017,” she said.