Major works on $367.2m Rookwood Weir Project in QLD commences

Monica Gameng   |   April 27, 2021
Rookwood Weir (cr: Sunwater)

In-river construction has commenced on the $367.2 million Rookwood Weir development, marking a new major milestone on the project that will help increase water security for Central Queensland. 

The major works build on a series of enabling works, including the recently completed workers’ accommodation camp. 

“This is a project that will deliver 200 jobs during construction and expand irrigated agricultural production in the Lower Fitzroy River Region by providing an additional 86,000 megalitres of medium-priority water. 

“The Rookwood Weir is a great example of the Australian Government delivering the water infrastructure that will become the National Water Grid, our $3.5 billion investment to secure Australia's water future,” Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said. 

Rookwood Weir is located on the Fitzroy River, approximately 66 kilometres south west of Rockhampton. Upon completionthe more than 16-metre-high weir will allow for the transition to higher-value agricultural land use as well as facilitate new industrial business opportunities. 

“Water is the lifeblood of our regional communities and industries and the Queensland Government's vision is for water to be secure, affordable and accessible. 

“More water from Rookwood Weir represents more opportunity for irrigators in the Lower Fitzroy to increase their production, grow their businesses and create more jobs for Queenslanders. 

“By delivering this project, the Queensland Government is delivering water security and prosperity for the entire Rockhampton region,” Queensland Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Minister for Water Glenn Butcher said. 

 

This multi-million-dollar project will include: 

  • Construction of an uncontrolled concrete gravity weir on the Fitzroy River, downstream of the Mackenzie and Dawson river systems 
  • Structural works on the right riverbank including the installation of intake screens, a low flow outlet and fishlock 
  • Earth fill and concrete abutments 
  • Enabling works that will upgrade existing infrastructure to support both the construction of the weir and its operations, which involves: 
    • Upgrading and widening 16.2 kilometres of Thirsty Creek Road 
    • Installing a new intersection on the Capricorn Highway and upgrading Second Street and Third Street through to the railway crossing at Gogango 
    • Building a 21-metre-high, 260-metre-long bridge at Riverslea to replace the existing crossing and up to 300 metres of new road on the approaches to the bridge, connecting to the existing road 
    • Upgrading the Foleyvale Bridge and its approcahes 

The Riverslea Bridge upgrade is now nearing completion while the Capricorn Highway intersection upgrade has been completed. 

On the other hand, upgrades to the Foleyvale Bridge and its approach roads are due to begin in early 2022. 

“The project will provide at least 140 jobs for workers in Central Queensland and the now complete workers’ camp will provide quarters for crews working 10 days on, four days off, to build the weir. 

“I welcome the economic opportunities the workers’ camp will provide to many workers – not only those that will help build the weir, but also local housekeeping and maintenance workers,” Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said. 

State Member for Rockhampton Barry O'Rourke said that local suppliers such as for catering, housekeeping and maintenance services will also benefit from the accommodation camp operations. 

“This is just another way in which this government is setting up Central Queensland for the future; jobs today in building the weir, jobs tomorrow for the irrigators, and jobs in the future industries that the weir will support,” Mr O'Rourke said. 

According to Sunwater Chief Executive Officer Glenn Stockton, it is pleasing to see works finally getting underway on Rookwood Weir following months of preparation. 

“There are almost 100 workers currently housed in the accommodation camp with more arriving every day. 

“An on-site concrete batch plant will start operation next week with bulk earthworks on the left and right riverbank continuing. 

“Sunwater is excited to be delivering this important project which will provide water security for the region, as well as jobs and economic opportunities for businesses and industry,” Mr Stockton said. 

Rookwood Weir is jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments, each contributing $183.6 million, and delivered in partnership with Sunwater. 

First water from the weir is anticipated to flow in 2023. 

Source: Queensland Government – Media StatementsMinister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development; Sunwater – Rookwood Weir Project; Infrastructure Magazine; Inside Construction 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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