Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade - Hamilton

Brisbane City Council is pleased to advise construction for the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade is now complete, with all six lanes of traffic open at 60km/h between Cooksley Street and Theodore Street, Hamilton. 

As key features of the project were completed, they were opened progressively to the community. Find out more about the project’s key project milestones.

Through the successful delivery of this project, Council has been able to make savings of $15 million and will be providing the rate payers of Brisbane a one-off rate rebate of almost $30 applied to rate notices issued on 1 January 2021.

About the project

Kingsford Smith Drive is a major Brisbane road. It links the Brisbane Central Business District (CBD) to the Airport, Port of Brisbane, Northshore Hamilton and Australia TradeCoast area.

The Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade involved road widening from four to six lanes, between Theodore Street, Eagle Farm and Cooksley Street, Hamilton. It also included improvement works between Cooksley Street and Breakfast Creek Road, Albion.

The upgrade will:

  • deliver significantly improved pedestrian and cycle facilities
  • provide active transport options for existing residents and the Northshore precinct
  • improve public transport with indented bus stops
  • cater for future increases in bus services along the corridor and reduce delays
  • create an entry statement to Brisbane
  • boost business and economic development
  • expand one of Brisbane’s most important traffic corridors.

 Kingsford Smith Drive fly-through video

Watch the video below to find out more about the project. Alternatively, watch this video on Council's YouTube channel, or read the text version.

Kingsford Smith Drive benefits

Benefits of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade include:

  • up to 30% travel time savings for all vehicles, including cars, buses and trucks
  • $70 million in new cycle and pedestrian facilities
  • seven kilometres of new and improved pedestrian and cycle paths
  • more than 5000 direct and indirect jobs over the life of the project
  • improved public transport provision, enabling future increases in bus services to cater to growth in the local area
  • improved safety for all road users
  • improved urban amenity and green spaces, including a new park at Bretts Wharf.

Key project milestones

Lores Bonney Riverwalk

The Kingsford Smith Drive riverside promenade and cycle path has been named the Lores Bonney Riverwalk, in honour of Maude 'Lores' Bonney and the significant impact she had upon the nation's aviation industry. The 1.2 kilometre riverwalk opened in December 2018 and is a key feature of the upgrade and a new landmark for Brisbane, providing a great place to walk, run, or cycle, while taking in the views. Find out more about the Lores Bonney Riverwalk.

Cameron Rocks Reserve

In April 2019, the rejuvenated Cameron Rocks Reserve was opened to the public, featuring new landscaping, lighting, shade shelters, a public barbecue and terrace steps to access the Brisbane River. The project team worked closely with the local RSL sub-branch throughout construction, ensuring Cameron Rocks Reserve remains a special place of remembrance with the relocated Hamilton War Memorial taking centre stage. 

Harbour Road to Theodore Street

The upgrade reached a major project milestone in June 2019, with all works between Harbour Road and Theodore Street, Hamilton completed. This 1.5 kilometre stretch of the upgrade now has six lanes open to traffic (three in each direction) along with new dedicated 1.8 metre on-road bicycle lanes, which will improve safety and reduce traffic congestion for all road users. The speed limit has also been reinstated to 60 kilometres per hour between Harbour Road and Theodore Street.

Racecourse Road to Toorak Road

Major traffic changes occurred on Kingsford Smith Drive between Racecourse Road and Toorak Road in November 2019, when inbound traffic was moved onto the newly constructed inbound traffic lanes adjacent to the Lores Bonney Riverwalk. 

In February 2020, the outbound traffic lanes between Racecourse Road and Toorak Road were moved onto temporary lanes in the centre median to allow for construction works to be completed on the northern verge of Kingsford Smith Drive. These works included upgrading the outbound traffic lanes, underground services, driveways and footpaths.

In August 2020, outbound traffic was moved onto the final alignment and works began to upgrade the centre median of Kingsford Smith Drive between Racecourse Road and Toorak Road. These works were completed in late October 2020.

Bretts Wharf plaza

Built as part of Council’s Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade, the new Bretts Wharf plaza is a multifunctional plaza and parkland area which has been designed for residents and visitors to entertain, relax and enjoy the stunning river views. With over 7000m2 of revitalised outdoor space, the area includes subtropical landscaping, BBQ and picnic facilities, seating, rest nodes, a bike repair station, stepped terraces to the river’s edge, facilities for hosting events, catenary lighting and public art.

The Bretts Wharf plaza and parkland was completed in late 2019 and is easily accessible via public transport with the Bretts Wharf CityCat terminal and bus stop located adjacent to the plaza.

Kingsford Smith Drive Recreation Hub

The Kingsford Smith Drive Recreation Hub was delivered as part of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade and is part of Council’s River Access Network (RAN). The recreation hub opened in early March 2020 and provides an additional river access point for this popular recreational area. The facility can accommodate non-motorised craft including kayaks, canoes and stand up paddleboards, as well as a short-term use area for motorised recreational craft. Find out more about the recreation hub.

New heritage trail

A new heritage trail has been developed as part of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade. A series of interpretive signs has been installed that focuses on the rich history of the local Hamilton area and can be found along the riverfront between Breakfast Creek and Bretts Wharf. Find out more about the Breakfast Creek to Bretts Wharf heritage trail

New public art trail

A new public art trail has been delivered as part of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade and forms part of Council's commitment to improving the urban amenity of the corridor, along with extensive landscaping, lighting, and signage. The trail between Cameron Rocks Reserve and Remora Road Hamilton, includes a series of colourful art beacons and ground artworks. Find out more about the Kingsford Smith Drive Public Art Trail.

Design and construction

Council appointed Lendlease to design and construct the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade. They are the first point of contact for all design and construction related enquiries.

Visit Lendlease's Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade website for more information, or to register for project updates.

Lendlease's design included:

  • a tree-lined boulevard creating a subtropical entry into Brisbane
  • a new riverwalk and segregated cycle path with dedicated rest areas that maximise public access to the river
  • a new urban plaza and parkland at Bretts Wharf, capitalising on river city views and easily accessible via public transport 
  • a rejuvenated Cameron Rocks Reserve, including a new lawn focussed on the heritage-listed war memorial (relocated and refurbished as part of the upgrade)
  • continuous footpaths on both sides of the road with improved footpath widths
  • dedicated on-road cycle lanes between Theodore Street and Harbour Road.

Project documents

You can download the:

More information

The Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade will reduce traffic congestion, improve safety and create an entry statement to Brisbane.  

For more information about the design and construction of the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade:

For general information about the Kingsford Smith Drive upgrade, contact Council's project team:

  • by phone on 07 3403 8888; or
  • email.
Last updated:27 October 2020
Topics: hamilton