Join the Supplier Guide
Auma-Solutions for a world in motion

EOIs invited for exploratory tunnel works for Borumba pumped stroage in Queensland

Queensland Hydro is seeking to hire a contractor to design and construct an exploratory tunnel at the site of its planned 2000 MW Borumba pumped-storage hydropower project in Australia's northeastern state. Expressions of interest are invited from suitably qualified contractors by 4 December. The objective of this Expression of Interest (EOI) is to shortlist suitable underground tunnelling and drilling works contractors to participate in the Request for Proposal (RFP) for the underground tunnelling and drilling works for the Borumba exploratory works.

The tunnel drilling package will help gather geological, geotechnical and hydrogeological data to confirm the proposed location for the underground powerhouse and transformers caverns, according to a procurement notice published on the website of the public developer. If the project proceeds, the temporary tunnel will likely be converted into one of the access tunnels required in the project design, it added. The EOI marks a new phase of the exploratory works phase for the Borumba project. Queensland Hydro is undertaking an exploratory works programme, designed to run from late-2023 until mid-2026. Initial ground investigations and geotechnical testing, overseen by power transmission company Powerlink, began in February 2022. Pending successful planning and environmental approvals, the project is targeting first power in 2030.

The proposed scheme at Lake Borumba, located in Imbil, southwest of Gympie, would involve building a new upper reservoir and dam, while increasing Lake Borumba’s storage capacity from 46 GL to 224 GL. In June of this year, the Government of Queensland announced A$ 6 billion (US$ 3.8 billion) in funding for the estimated $14.2 billion (US$ 9 billion) project, which will allow Queensland Hydro to progress with exploratory works, the environmental impact assessment and detailed engineering. The funding will also support construction, subject to full project approval. The investment decision has been informed by engineering, environmental, social, and recreation studies carried out during the detailed design and cost analysis phase. Queensland Hydro delivered the Detailed Analytical Report (DAR) to the Queensland Government in March 2023.

Shortlisted companies will be invited to submit requests for proposal in February 2024. The contract is expected to be awarded in August 2024, with work set to commence in November 2024.

Proponents interested in submitting an Expression of Interest are invited to do so via QTenders. A link to the EOI can be found on the company’s website or by searching “CONBUR0236EOI” on QTenders. For further information, contact Peter Misopapas at