The M7 runs from the junction of Ipswich Road and Granard Road to the M2 Logan Motorway interchange. It is then signed M2 until the junction of the Warrego Highway and the Cunningham Highway between Brisbane and Ipswich in South East Queensland, Australia.
It initially passes through the suburbs of Rocklea, Oxley and Darra in south west Brisbane before reaching the eastern suburbs of Ipswich such as Redbank Plains, Goodna and Riverview. The Motorway is directly connected to the M5 Centenary Motorway at Darra and the M2 Logan Motorway at Gailes. In 2008, it was estimated that 80,000 cars use the road daily. In late 2010, this figure had risen to close to 100,000 vehicles per day. In 2002, the morning peak traffic volume was greatest between 7:00 am and 8:00 am. By 2008, the morning peak traffic volume peaked between the hours of 5:00 am and 6:00 am.
The motorway was formed from the original Ipswich Road/Cunningham Arterial Road, which was upgraded during the 1980s and 1990s to form a grade-separated motorway-grade route. The Ipswich Motorway was commissioned on 17 May 1994.
In 2003, planning for an upgrade of the entire road began. The road was identified in the South East Queensland Infrastructure Plan and Program as one requiring urgent attention. An upgrade was needed to improve safety and relieve traffic congestion.
The upgrade from four lanes to six between Wacol and Darra was one of the Australian Labor Party‘s key 2007 federal election promises. The upgrade included widening the Ipswich Motorway from four to six lanes, transformation of the Centenary Highway Interchange to a free-flowing multi level system interchange and work on adjoining service roads that aims to reduce traffic on the motorway by up to 20%. The Federal government has contributed a total of $3.1 billion for the upgrade. The Wacol to Darra section of the motorway was officially opened on 18 April 2010.
The eight kilometres upgrade of the Ipswich Motorway between Dinmore and Goodna started in mid-2009. It was completed in 2012 and officially opened on 15 May 2012. The A$1.95 billion project funded by the Australian Government is delivered by the Origin Alliance consisting of the Department of Transport and Main Roads, Abigroup, Seymour Whyte, Fulton Hogan, SMEC and Parsons Brinckerhoff.
The final section to be upgraded is a 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) stretch between Darra and Rocklea with its planning finalised in 2011.
The proposed Goodna Bypass or Northern Bypass of the western section of the M2 was cancelled following the 2007 elections. This 7 kilometres (4.3 mi) section of new Motorway would have taken traffic from the Warrego and Cunningham Highways to the Logan Motorway interchange including four crossings of the Brisbane River.
LGA Location km mi Destinations Notes Brisbane Rocklea 0 0.0 Ipswich Road (A7) north / Granard Road (Metroad 2) east – Brisbane CBD, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Brisbane Airport North-eastern terminus: continues as Ipswich Road 1 0.62 Suscatand Street North-eastbound exit and entrance Randolph Street South-westbound entrance and exit Oxley 3 1.9 Oxley Road (State Route 35) north / Blunder Road (State Route 35) south – Oxley, Inala Access to frontage roads 4 2.5 Douglas Street north / Rudd Street south – Inala Darra 5 3.1 Harcourt Road north / Acanthus Street south – Richlands, Darra South-westbound exit and entrance via frontage road 6.5 4.0 Centenary Motorway (M5) – Jindalee, Brisbane, Springfield, Gold Coast No north-eastbound exit to M5 southbound, no south-westbound entrance from M5 northbound Wacol 9 5.6 Progress Road (State Route 30) east / Wacol Station Road west – Inala, Woodridge, Wacol 10.5 6.5 Brisbane Road – Goodna, Redbank Plains, to Logan Motorway and Queen Street South-westbound exit only Brisbane–Ipswich boundary Wacol–Gailes boundary 11 6.8 Logan Motorway – Logan, Gold Coast, Brisbane Airport Route transition: M7 north-eastbound, M2 south-westbound; north-eastbound exit and south-westbound entrance only Ipswich Goodna 13 8.1 Church Street (State Route 61) – north to Woogaroo Street; south to Brisbane Road, Queen Street (State Route 61), Mill Street, Smiths Road No south-westbound exit; south-westbound entrance via Brisbane Road Redbank 16 9.9 Mine Street north / Collingwood Drive south / Francis Street east – Collingwood Park, Redbank North-eastbound entrance via Francis Street Riverview 19 12 Warrego Highway (M2) south-west / Cunningham Highway (M15) north-west – Esk, Toowoomba, Warwick South-western terminus: continues as Cunningham Highway; partial Y interchange: no access between Warrego and Cunningham highways
- “Labor PM Kevin Rudd kicks off Ipswich Motorway upgrade”. couriermail.com.au. Queensland Newspapers. 2008-03-02. Retrieved 2009-08-25.
- Tony Moore (16 November 2010). “Early bird gets the traffic jam”. Brisbane Times. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 18 November 2010.
- “Ipswich Motorway (Darra to Rocklea) Newsletter 2” (PDF). State of Queensland. October 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 April 2012. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- “Ipswich Motorway Overview”. Nation Building Program. Department of Infrastructure and Transport. 11 October 2010. Retrieved 5 November 2011.
- “Rudd opens Ipswich Motorway upgrade”. ABC News online. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 2008-03-02. Retrieved 2009-08-25.
- “Ipswich Motorway upgrade: Wacol to Darra”. Department of Transport and Main Roads. 27 July 2011. Archived from the original on 15 February 2012. Retrieved 18 November 2011.
- Tony Moore (15 May 2012). “Five stages down, one to go: $2.8b road upgrade completion in sight”. Brisbane Times. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 15 May 2012.
- “Ipswich Motorway upgrade: Dinmore to Goodna”. Department of Transport and Main Roads. 17 October 2011. Archived from the original on 4 September 2011. Retrieved 18 November 2011.