Construction complete on $2.6B Amrun bauxite development

A new 650-metre long access jetty and 350-metre long wharf has been constructed by construction company McConnel Dowell for mining company Rio Tinto’s $2.6 billion Amrun bauxite development on the Cape York Peninsula in Far North Queensland.

The Chith Export Facility was constructed in 12 months, fully provisioned with services, conveyors, roadways and access walkways. The onshore scope included 350 metres of ground conveyors and a transfer station.

A new 650-metre long access jetty and 350-metre long wharf has been constructed by construction company McConnel Dowell for mining company Rio Tinto’s $2.6 billion Amrun bauxite development on the Cape York Peninsula in Far North Queensland.
Image Credit: McConnel Dowell

It was designed by construction company Jacobs, with constructability oversight by Rio Tinto’s Bechtel.

The design concept saw the wharf split into seven ‘jackets’ incorporating dolphins and topside modules, which reduced the number of permanent piles required to be installed from 100 to 28 and minimising the environmental impact to marine life in the area.

McConnell Dowell fabricated the jacket structures and topside modules off site, which enabled on site jetty and wharf construction to occur concurrently, with the largest topside module weighing 1200 tonnes.

The Jetty was constructed using McConnel Dowell’s cantilevering traveller frame with hydraulic piling gates, with access incorporated into the traveller design.

Rio Tinto’s Project General Manager Marcia Hanrahan said construction innovations used on the project are integral for advancing the future of mining and metals industry in a safe, cost effective and replicable manner.

“The collaboration between Rio Tinto, Bechtel, McConnell Dowell and Jacobs throughout the design, fabrication and construction phases of the project has delivered an approach to wharf building that will pave the way for future projects, not just in Australia but globally,” Ms Hanrahan said.

McConnell Dowell’s Australian Managing Director Jim Frith said the collaboration between companies lead to some ground breaking new methods.

“New approaches that deliver time, cost, quality and environmental benefits are rare to achieve, so we are extremely proud to be part of this project with this team,” Mr Frith said.


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