Paradise Dam Improvement Project

Paradise Dam Improvement Project

Paradise Dam, Queensland

Sunwater is planning future work to stabilise and strengthen Paradise Dam which will ensure the dam’s long-term viability.

The Project

The Paradise Dam Improvement Project (DIP) will ensure the dam’s long-term viability by:

  • increasing its resilience to extreme weather events
  • bringing it in line with modern engineering design standards
  • ensuring it meets the safety requirements set out in the Water Supply (Safety and Reliability) Act 2008 (Qld) and other state and national dam safety guidelines.


The earlier stages of the Paradise DIP included flood repair works carried out in 2013 and further improvement works completed in mid-2017.

The scope of the long-term DIP works at Paradise Dam will be determined by the results of further technical investigation. The improvement activities will likely include further stabilisation and strengthening of the spillway including mass concrete buttressing and extended protection of the downstream river bed, among other works. Post-tensioned anchors are still being considered but are a higher-risk solution for Paradise Dam. The works are likely to include several years of construction activity. 

The future of Paradise Dam

The Queensland Government is expected to make a decision about the long-term future of Paradise Dam by the end of 2021. A recommendation to government will be informed by further information gathered from technical investigations conducted in conjunction with implementing the Paradise Dam Essential Works. The need for this additional information was identified in the Paradise Dam Options Assessment (February 2020).

Detailed business case

Sunwater (as the proponent) is working closely with the Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water (DRDMW) which is leading the Stage 1 detailed business case (DBC) options assessment for the Paradise DIP.

More information regarding this is available in the Paradise Dam Detailed Business Case Fact Sheet.

The DBC assessment will follow a consistent and rigorous approach to proposal development, providing an objective, holistic cost/benefit assessment of development options and, based on this analysis, presents a recommendation for the long-term dam improvement.

Future water demand assessment

NCEconomics has been engaged by DRDMW to undertake an assessment of future water demand and a broader economic assessment to inform the Stage 1 DBC options assessment. This is a critical task underpinning the DBC process.

It will assess how much water is needed, from which customer segments and when, and will help to inform certain aspects of the options being assessed such as the height of the dam wall and/or other potential improvements to the existing water supply scheme.

Current and potential water users were encouraged to have their say via a survey to ensure current water use and future intentions were captured. This was particularly important for those who were looking at expanding or changing operations.

The survey closed on Friday, 30 October 2020 with all data collected remaining confidential. The study will report on aggregated data only.

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