The Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade is officially complete and delivered under budget, with Brisbane ratepayers to pocket $15 million in savings from this transformational road project.

Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said, today marked the completion of the most complex and largest road project undertaken by Council in living memory.

“This road is an engineering marvel that’s employed over 5000 people who have undertaken more than 4.1 million hours of work over the course of the project,” Cr Schrinner said.

“It’s a gateway to the city from Brisbane Airport, the TradeCoast and the Sunshine Coast which has now been widened from four to six lanes, including two built out over the river, intersection upgrades and changes to boost safety for all road users.

“It will be a tree-lined boulevard that greets visitors as a grand entrance to our beautiful city.

“This is the biggest Council road project our city has ever seen and it’s incredibly fitting that Sir Charles Kingsford Smith’s descendant Jillian Kingsford Smith has joined us for the official opening.

“Thousands of people have helped build this road and the savings from this project will be put directly into the pockets of Brisbane ratepayers.

“The savings made during construction will be used to extend our financial support for ratepayers with an almost $30 rebate to be applied to all rates notices issued from January 1 next year.

“This rates rebate continues on from the six-month rates freeze I announced in June, extending rates relief for a further quarter,” Cr Schrinner said.

Infrastructure Chair and Hamilton Ward Councillor David McLachlan said this project would benefit residents right across Brisbane.

“Kingsford Smith Drive is one of Brisbane’s busiest corridors carrying about 70,000 vehicles a day and linking the city to Brisbane Airport, Northshore Hamilton, Australia TradeCoast and the Gateway Motorway,” Cr McLachlan said.

“This upgrade is much more than just a road project. It has replaced infrastructure first built in the 19th century and delivered the Lores Bonney Riverwalk, which has already been used by nearly 800,000 pedestrians and cyclists since it opened in 2018, a new on-water recreation hub and a revitalisation of the Cameron Rocks Reserve War Memorial.

“Today’s opening will see the speed limit change back to 60km/h. The 40km/h speed limit was required during works to keep everyone safe and I thank commuters for their patience, but I know everyone is looking forward to the 60km/h speed limit being reinstated.

“The project involved complex construction over the river and presented very challenging ground conditions and a partial redesign mid-project and delays was something we could not have predicted, nor controlled.

“I am proud our team of 5000 workers rose to those challenges worked tirelessly to deliver this transformational road project under budget for Brisbane residents.”

The Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade has delivered far more than two new lanes, seven kilometres of new and improved pedestrian and cycle paths, improved public transport with 11 upgraded bus stops, increased safety with eight intersections modifications and two new signalised intersections, enhanced public space and better access to the Brisbane River with the Lores Bonney Riverwalk and a new recreation hub.


  1. 5000 workers throughout the project, with 4.15 million hours completed. In July 2020 alone more than 35,153 hours were completed.
  2. 190 rive piles – the upgrade extends into the river between 10 and 15 metres.
  3. The largest crane used on site was 750 tonnes – (Liebherr LR 1750 Crawler)
  4. 12 barges used during construction – totalling more than 500 metres in length.
  5. 6113 metres of new concrete pipe was installed as part of drainage upgrades.
  6. The oldest pipe replaced was 123 years old.
  7. 89,000 tonnes of asphalt was laid
  8. 17,500 square metres of footpath was installed (excluding the Lores Bonney Riverwalk)

133,981 plants were planted – including 406 trees, with 20 different species. Some trees were between four and seven metres high when they were planted