Site Works Ramping Up At Burdekin Falls Dam

Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Minister for Water The Honourable Glenn Butcher
  • Drilling and survey works underway as part of 2-metre raise of Queensland’s largest dam
  • Dam raising will boost dam’s capacity by more than 570,000 megalitres
  • Drilling, trenching and survey works supporting 22 jobs
  • Main construction expected to create more than 350 jobs

On-site activities are ramping up on Burdekin Falls Dam, as part of the Queensland Government’s project to raise the dam by two metres and improve its resilience against extreme weather.

These on-site activities will support 22 jobs over the coming months, with the majority from North Queensland. The project will create more than 350 jobs during construction.

Drilling and trenching will examine the dam’s foundations, main structure and saddle dams. The project team will also assess clay and sand from the area.

These on-site activities will help the project team better understand labour, equipment and material requirements to inform construction.

Local suppliers from Townsville and Ayr have been contracted to provide accommodation (NQ Caravan Rentals), office and laboratory testing facilities as well plant hire and plumbing services.

Topographic surveys are also progressing to inform the design process while Sunwater is conducting stakeholder engagement with landholders and Traditional Owners. Cultural heritage field officers representing the Birriah People are supporting these works.

The Burdekin Falls Dam 2-metre raise will increase medium priority water allocations by approximately 150,000 megalitres per year, boosting capacity at the dam from 1.8 million megalitres to more than 2.4 million.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Water, Glenn Butcher:

“Queensland’s largest dam is going to get even bigger under the Miles Government.

“With the project set to create 350 jobs during construction, there will be considerable flow-on benefits for North Queensland.

“This is good news on the jobs front, with 350 jobs expected during construction. I also look forward to seeing more Townsville and North Queensland suppliers getting involved.

“The 2-metre raise makes sense – both economically and environmentally.

“While the LNP whinge, the Miles Labor Government is moving ahead with the 2-metre raising of Burdekin Falls Dam.

“The biggest risk to North Queensland is a Crisafulli Government. They cut infrastructure, they sacked staff – and they will do it all again if given the chance.

“The Miles Government continues to deliver for North Queensland, as part of our record big build. Apart from this important project, we have Copperstring, the Haughton Pipeline and Riverway Drive, just to name a few.”

Quotes attributable to Mundingburra MP, Les Walker:

“I worked as an apprentice on the construction of Burdekin Falls Dam when I was 18 so I know how much this project means to the region.

“North Queenslanders are already reaping the rewards of this project, with the ongoing involvement of local businesses throughout this project.

“It is great to see on-site activity underway at the dam – and for workers from North Queensland to be playing a key role.”

Quotes attributable to Townsville MP, Scott Stewart:

“Improvement works will ensure Burdekin Falls Dam continues to pass flood waters safely and complies with modern design standards and guidelines.

“It is important the structure is resilient to a range of extreme weather events so it can remain safe and productive for many years to come.

“Water security is important to ensure industries can continue to grow which is why we’ve invested $410 million in stages one and two of the Haughton Pipeline project too.”

Quotes attributable to Thuringowa MP, Aaron Harper:

“Water and energy security is key to growing industry in the north which why we’re investing in this project, Haughton Pipeline Stage 2 and Copperstring to bring more jobs to Townsville and the north.

“I want to see local suppliers and workers engaged in the project now and as it continues to progress.”

Quotes attributable to Sunwater CEO, Glenn Stockton:

“The investigations and preparatory works we have commenced are essential to provide us with the information we need to make important project decisions.

“Sunwater continues to engage directly with the community, landholders and Traditional Owners to ensure local interests and expectations are considered and managed during project activities.”

Quotes attributable to NQ Caravan Rentals Director, Hayden Lilly:

“Our Townsville-based business is providing seven on-site accommodation units for the project team, as well installing barbeque and plumbing facilities.

“We are excited to involved in such an important project that gives us an opportunity to expand our team and grow our small, family-run business.

“It’s great that such a big, long-term project is sourcing work and materials from regional businesses like NQ Caravans and we can see more opportunities for us and other trades in the years to come.”

Further Information:

The proposed works on the dam will include raising the spillway and abutments using concrete buttressing, raising and widening the saddle dams, and constructing a new saddle dam on the right bank.

Businesses can register their interest to supply goods and services on the project’s dedicated web registry. This site will house expressions of interest, while the Queensland Government’s QTenders portal will be used to release official offer requests.

Sunwater will soon appoint a consultant to undertake a series of investigations into the road network leading to the dam.

/Public Release. View in full here.