Transgrid CEO Brett Redman

The EnergyConnect transmission project has hit construction milestones, with the first of 1,500 steel towers installed, as well as earthworks completed at the Buronga substation expansion.

The $1.8 billion EnergyConnect project will integrate renewable energy into the grid and help Australia achieve its emissions reduction targets. 

Construction crews erected the first guyed towers using a 230t crane at Buronga, near  Mildura. Unlike conventional self-supporting towers, which stand on four legs, guyed towers comprise a central mast held in place by four steel cables. 

Transgrid CEO, Brett Redman, said, “We are getting on with the job of delivering the critical infrastructure needed to provide Australian households and businesses with cheaper, more reliable and sustainable energy.

A guyed tower rises on EnergyConnect

A guyed tower rises on EnergyConnect

“The raising of our first transmission towers on EnergyConnect is yet another significant milestone in building the energy superhighway to accelerate the nation’s clean energy future.” 

“Importantly, this type of tower requires about 15 per cent less steel and 25 per cent less concrete in construction, achieving a reduced carbon footprint. It is just one of the ways Transgrid is delivering more sustainable outcomes on our transmission projects as we lead the transition to a clean energy future.” 

Meanwhile, works are well underway on the expansion of Transgrid’s Buronga substation, which will become the main hub for energy sharing between the three states. Earthworks on the substation bench are now complete, with concrete foundations being poured to hold the synchronous condensers and transformers at the heart of the facility.  

“The 16-hectare expansion of the Buronga substation is the equivalent of 20 football fields and, once operational, it will be one of the largest and most complex substations in the Southern Hemisphere,” Mr Redman said. 

Following the establishment of a 30-hectare worker accommodation camp and laydown with office facilities at Buronga, construction is also progressing on another two camps on Renmark Rd, west of the South Australia border, and near Lockhart, at the eastern end of the project alignment.  

Riggers at work on a guyed tower

Riggers at work on a guyed tower

Ultimately, six workforce camps will be established along the EnergyConnect alignment, providing the equivalent of 490,000 nights of accommodation during the project. The camps will relieve pressure on limited housing and accommodation in local communities, reduce travel to construction sites, and ensure the health and wellbeing of workers with high-quality living amenities including gyms and recreation rooms.  

Feature image: Transgrid CEO, Brett Redman. Provided by Transgrid.

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