Clem Jones Tunnel – CLEM7

Latest link in Transapex plan.

The Clem Jones Tunnel (CLEM7), formerly known as the North South Bypass Tunnel, is one of Brisbane’s largest road infrastructure projects aimed at addressing the existing and future transport needs of Brisbane.

This landmark project provided a direct north-south link without travelling through the CBD or Fortitude Valley, in turn reducing deficiencies in the current urban road network. The project forms the first plank in Brisbane City Council’s TransApex Plan to reduce congestion across the city.

The project was 6.8km in length from end to end and includes two 4.8km tunnels linking the Southeast Freeway and Ipswich Road in Woolloongabba; the Inner City Bypass and Lutwyche Road in Bowen Hills and Shafston Avenue in Kangaroo Point.

The project also included a range of urban enhancements to surrounding suburbs. It comprises the longest and most technically advanced tunnel of its kind in Australia. The project was the first in Brisbane to use two Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs.)

 River City Motorway (RCM)

The River City Motorway (RCM) consortium was established to own and operate the CLEM7, for a concession period of 45 years. RCM contracted the design and construction of the project to LBB JV, a joint venture between Leighton Contractors, Baulderstone and Bilfinger Berger. Leighton Contractors combined its strengths and experience to deliver the first privately funded toll road to the people of Brisbane.

Innovative ideas

Community involvement

With the CLEM7 located in the heart of a major city, it was inevitable that a large proportion of the Brisbane community would be affected in some way during construction. Therefore, an open and individual approach to engagement has been implemented throughout each stage of the project. The engagement program incorporates a oneon- one consultation program, a site based Visitors’ Centre, a regularly updated project website, and an educational program for road users.

Environmental program

The sheer size and scope of the CLEM7 has resulted in the need for a comprehensive program to develop and foster a culture of proactive environmental management with regular monitoring and evaluation. Key innovations of this program included:

• A self-sufficient water strategy
• Predictive modelling of noise and vibration from construction activities, in particular tunnelling operations
• Using new techniques and methods to minimise noise from night time activities
• Preservation of delicate mangrove population.

Benefits to Brisbane

Leighton Contractors was pleased to be part of what will become one of Brisbane’s most significant infrastructure projects.

The CLEM7 provided the following key benefits:

• Address existing and predicted future traffic congestion levels in and around the Brisbane CBD.
• Removal of significant traffic from the existing surface roads in the city.
• Complete a CBD bypass and inner city ring road system.
• Deliver a better network for pedestrians, cyclists and public transport.
• Free road space to enable opportunities for public transport and other modes of transport along the CLEM7 corridor.
• Save motorists up to 30 per cent travel time on a cross-city trip particularly during peakhour travel time across the city.

• Enable motorists to avoid up to 23 sets of traffic lights.
• Improve air quality in the city by reducing surface traffic.
• Assist regeneration of a number of urban centres in Woolloongabba, Bowen Hills and Kangaroo Point.
• At the peak of construction, employ more than 1,600 people.
• Allow the people of Brisbane and Queensland to invest in the road through a public share offer.
• Will include a state-of-the-art electronic tolling system, fully compatible with other Australian electronic toll roads.
• Create new standards in tolling customer service, particularly in convenience, flexibility and transparency.