$5 billion North Queensland power play underway

High voltage transmission lines. | Newsreel
The CopperString Project will deliver an almost 1000km high voltage transmission line in North Queensland. | | Photo: Bulent Baris (iStock)

Ground has been broken on a $5 billion project to deliver a high-voltage transmission line in North Queensland.

The outback town of Hughenden has become the heart of Powerlink’s CopperString project, which will deliver an almost 1000km high-voltage transmission line connecting Mt Isa to the Queensland SuperGrid.

Premier Steven Miles said work commenced today on the projects’ first and largest workforce accommodation site, which would build a large portion of line that aims to unlock the region’s world-class renewable resources and critical minerals.

Premier Miles said ATCO Structures would deliver the workforce accommodation by early 2025, with the transmission line due to be completed by 2029.

“The workforce accommodation will house up to 550 construction workers at its peak. These workers will construct a nearby substation and progress early stages of the transmission line development heading west from Hughenden out to Mt Isa,” he said.

Premier Miles said construction included site preparation and civil works, as well as installation and maintenance of accommodation quarters over the site’s five-year life span.

“Since acquiring the project, Powerlink Queensland has powered on with progress and recently announced the purchase of significant equipment critical to the delivery of the project, including shunt reactors, transformers and high voltage powerline.

“A 100-strong project team has also been established, alongside joint-venture partners UGL and CPB Contractors, with all detailed design on the transmission corridor well underway.”

Powerlink’s Chief Executive Paul Simshauser said Powerlink would offer free sessions for businesses along the CopperString corridor to build their capabilities.

“The program includes five workshops and one-on-one assistance to help businesses build confidence to bid on major projects and supply chain work in the region,” Mr Simshauser said.

The first workshop is in Hughenden on July 23, followed by Richmond on July 25.

For more information phone 1800 635 369 or register on the Powerlink website.