Project Description


BHP / Arup

Project Value:

$23 billion

Located 560 km north of Adelaide, South Australia, Olympic Dam is a multi-mineral underground mine. It is the world’s fourth largest remaining copper and gold deposit and the world’s largest known uranium deposit. It also contains significant quantities of silver.

BHP had planned a significant redevelopment of the mine to transform it from an underground mine to an open pit mine. The expansion would have been staged, requiring construction activity over a period of 11 years.

During the feasibility and design phases WT Partnership seconded two staff to BHP to provide cost planning and cost estimating covering all aspects of the project including:

  • Site camps (Temporary and permanent)
  • Construction costs associated with process plant
  • Roads
  • Rolling stock infrastructure
  • Airport
  • Intermodal terminal
  • Above and below ground mining infrastructure
  • Overland conveyors
  • Full mine, mining camp and auxiliary services (Power, gas, water, comms, fire)

Our team also provided significant cost planning advice relating to the construction of a new $3 billion hydrometallurgical plant incorporating production of three estimates including Capex costs, labour costs and common distributables.

The work our team performed on the hydrometallurgical plant was recognised with a BHPB In-House Excellence Award.

Once the project reached detailed planning and budgeting phase WT Partnership’s team provided cost planning services for works associated with the Western Access Corridor, Administration and minor building, Port Augusta Wharf, Wharf Access Corridor, Sulphur Materials Handling Facility, the Pimba Intermodal Terminal and Passing Bays components of the project.

The project had been approved by the South Australian, Western Australian and Federal Governments following review of the Supplementary Environmental Impact Statement and Roxby Downs and Environs Development Plan Amendment, however BHP’s board has decided not to commence the works.