The Barron River bridge near Kuranda will reopen to two lanes next Wednesday, a year after it was reduced to single lane traffic.

Transport and Main Roads has now completed repairs to fatigue cracks on the ageing structure, and has also carried out structural safety monitoring.

However, the former 80-kilometre speed limit will be reduced to 60 kilometres per hour and a 50.5-tonne load limit will remain in place.

The pedestrian lane will also be moved to the westbound side to distribute heavier loads more centrally.


Member for Barron River Craig Crawford said cameras and sensors installed earlier this year have provided data on the strength of the bridge under different traffic loads.

“From this data, we know the bridge is performing well and can be reopened to two lanes of traffic,” he said.


Trucks that travel up the Kuranda Range usually carry a heavier load than trucks that travel down.

“In conjunction with the reduced speed limit, moving the pedestrian access will also give us the opportunity to improve safety for people walking.”

The new 60 kilometre per hour speed zone will start from near Rainforestation and end about halfway between the bridge and the intersection of Rob Veivers Drive and Myola Road.

A $2.1 million planning project to investigate whether the bridge needs replacing has begun and is due for completion late next year.

A separate $1.6 million study examining alternative routes to the Northern Tablelands was scheduled to be made public in August but is still sitting on the desk of Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey’s for consideration.


Main points

  • Traffic management will be removed from the Kuranda Range's Barron River Bridge next Wednesday 
  • It will be restored to two lanes, with a 60 kilometre/hr speed limit  
  • The pedestrian walkway will be moved to the westbound lane to more centrally distribute heavier loads travelling up the range
The lower speed limit will not only help to keep the bridge safe, but will also help to reduce the risk of cassowary strikes at this location.