Hells Gates Dam Project

The Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study has confirmed the viability of the $5.35 billion irrigated agricultural and power project on the upper Burdekin River. The Federal Government has committed $54M towards Phase 1 of the Project which includes $30M for the first stage of Big Rocks Weir at Charters Towers – a component of the Hells Gate Project that has been championed strongly by Charters Towers Mayor, Liz Schmidt. The remaining $24M is for detailed engineering, construction, enhanced economic modelling works, environmental surety and satisfaction of cultural heritage interests quantifying the Hells Gates Dam program.

The findings of the SMEC led study defined the Hells Gates Dam Irrigation Project has the potential to redefine Northern Queensland’s agriculture sector and underpin long term export market growth and investment.

The logical next stage for major infrastructure projects and investment of the size and scale proposed is a detailed Business Case – inclusive of a comprehensive Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). This next necessary body of work will assess in detail any challenges and impediments associated with the realisation of the Hells Gates Dam project. This work will also be critical in understanding the project’s potential return on investment for government and private sector investors.

Townsville Enterprise today released the completed $2.2M study following its review by State and Federal Governments. Townsville Enterprise project-managed with funding from the Federal Government’s National Water Infrastructure Development Fund. 

For further details on the Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study, please contact Michael McMillan on 0477 299 700 / michael.mcmillan@tel.com.au





Advocacy Timeline 
  • May 2016 - Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources announced an election commitment of $2.2M under the National Water Infrastructure Development Fund (NWIDF) to assess the proposed Hells Gates Dam
  • September 2016 - Townsville Enterprise submitted an Expression of Interest (EOI) under the NWIDF to conduct a study into the feasibility of a dam at Hells Gates
  • 25 October 2016 - State Government announces establishment of financial mechanism structures to conduct feasibility studies
  • November 2016 - Federal Department of Agriculture and Water Resources accepted Townsville Enterprises EOI
  • 8 December 2016 - Expressions of interest opened by Townsville Enterprise for a leader of the project
  • 15 May 2017 - SMEC chosen to lead Hells Gates Dam Feasibility Study
  • May 2018 - Full feasibility study submitted to Government for review
  • 16 October 2018 - Full feasibility study released to the public. Submission prepared for Federal Government funding of business case. 
  • 8 November 2018 - Federal Government committed $54M towards Phase 1 of the Project.

Key Projects

Title Read Opportunity Townsville North
Queensland Edition 1

"πŸš€It's offical! πŸš€ The rocket man himself, Sir @eltonofficial will launch our new North Queensland Stadium Saturday 2… https://t.co/OQYZukhLSv"

08:25 AM Jun 14th @TSVEnterprise