An old friend returns as Gold Coast-Springbrook Road reopens

As Queensland scenic roads go, Gold Coast-Springbrook Road is one of the best, a picturesque 22-kilometre route that winds its way from Mudgeeraba to the green heart of the Gold Coast Hinterland.

For many, the road’s twists and turns, stunning scenery and spectacular views make it a drive to be regularly enjoyed.

For local businesses, it’s a lifeline.

But heavy rainfall in early 2022 saw Gold Coast-Springbrook Road quite literally slip off the ‘must do drive’ list of locals, day trippers and tourists, and in the process created a major headache for local businesses.

From 23 February to 1 March 2022, Springbrook recorded no less than 676mm of rain.

The deluge triggered multiple landslips that were cleared by Transport and Main Roads (TMR) crews, allowing the road to reopen under traffic control and traffic signals.

However, a further downpour in late March, including 218mm at Springbrook, was the catalyst for a 70-metre landslip north of Little Nerang Dam that deposited 2,500 tonnes of dirt, rock and branches onto the road below.

With so much debris to be cleared, on 31 March 2022 TMR temporarily closed a nine-kilometre stretch of Gold Coast-Springbrook Road from Neranwood Park to Pine Creek.

The closure allowed TMR crews to undertake complex restoration works simultaneously on multiple sites, reducing the timeframe to complete roadworks and minimising impacts to the community and businesses.

This massive undertaking involved substantial slope stabilisation and reconstruction works at 15 major sites that suffered damage during the record weather events of early 2022 and a further three sites damaged by severe storms in September 2022.

Work included installing approximately 1,700 soil nails and more than 9,500m² of steel wire mesh and erosion control matting at damage sites along the road, and more than 400m³ of shotcrete to further stabilise the slopes.

With major works completed, TMR reopened the closed section of Gold Coast-Springbrook Road on 21 December 2023 via a single lane under stop/slow conditions while final debris clearing and slope stabilisation was undertaken.

Funding assistance for these vital roadworks has been provided through the joint Commonwealth-state Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).