The first construction work has commenced for the CopperString 2032 project in North Queensland, Australia. 

The A$5bn ($3.37bn) project, led by Powerlink, features an approximately 1,000km high-voltage transmission line that will connect Mount Isa to the national SuperGrid.  

Queensland Deputy Premier Cameron Dick said: “CopperString 2032 lies at the heart of Queensland’s economic transformation. By connecting the mineral wealth of our state’s north-west to Townsville’s manufacturing precincts and port, we are creating the opportunity for more Queensland minerals to be processed in Queensland, creating skilled jobs in new industries.  

“We are also making it easier for industrial-scale renewable projects right across Queensland’s north to feed into the national grid, helping deliver more affordable, renewable energy.” 

This initial phase includes the construction of workforce accommodation by ATCO Structures, set for completion by early 2025. 

The accommodation will cater to up to 550 workers at peak times. 

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These workers will be responsible for constructing a substation and the early stages of the 840km high-voltage transmission line extending west from Hughenden towards Mount Isa.  

The scope of construction encompasses site preparation, civil works, and the establishment and maintenance of living quarters throughout the project’s five-year duration. 

Powerlink Queensland, having taken over the project, recently announced the procurement of equipment such as shunt reactors, transformers, and high-voltage powerline components.  

A team, including joint venture partners UGL and CPB Contractors, is progressing with the detailed design of the transmission corridor. 

To support local business involvement, Powerlink will initiate complimentary sessions later this month to enhance the capabilities of businesses along the CopperString corridor.  

The main construction of the high-voltage transmission line is scheduled to start in mid-2025 from Hughenden, moving westward to Mount Isa.  

Additionally, the eastern section of the line will be constructed from Hughenden back to Townsville, with the entire project expected to reach completion in 2029.