2006 – Design and Construction of the Gattonvale Offstream Storage

Nerida Bartlett, David Scriven, Peter Richardson

The failure of a number of consecutive wet seasons has resulted in storage levels in Eungella Dam being at dangerously low levels such that supply could be exhausted by June 2007. Eungella Dam supplies bulk water to the Bowen Basin coal fields as well as the Collinsville power station and the Collinsville township.

The Collinsville township, power station and coal mine as well as the Newlands mines take water from the Bowen River Weir which is supplied from Eungella Dam some 95 kilometres upstream. Transmission losses of the order of 25 to 50% have been experienced for releases from Eungella Dam to Bowen River Weir.

The Eungella Dam catchment area is 142 square kilometres. Significant flows occur in the Bowen River downstream of Eungella Dam, the catchment area above Bowen River Weir being 4,520 square kilometres. The topography in the surrounding area (near Collinsville) is not suitable for dam construction.

The opportunity existed for the construction of an offstream storage adjacent to the Bowen River Weir so that the downstream flows could be captured reducing the demand on Eungella Dam thus making more water available for upstream users.

A 5,200 ML offstream storage, associated pump station and rising main was designed, constructed and filled within a period of 12 months.

Foundations at the site are highly permeable sands. Marginally suitable clay for a seal was in short supply as was suitable rock for slope protection. A fixed price budget had been set by the contributing customers.

This paper describes the hydrology, site conditions, design and construction of the project.

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