Project Overview

Project Overview

Great news for Port Hinchinbrook residents with works now underway on the replacement of the Port Hinchinbrook (Cardwell) Sewerage Treatment Plant (STP) with construction commencing late August 2023.

This project is an investment in the long-term resilience and prosperity of Port Hinchinbrook and Cardwell, providing a foundation for sustainable growth and development.

The new STP is a result of years of planning and collaboration between all three levels of government to replace a failing facility. During construction, the current STP will remain functional, ensuring seamless service transition for Port Hinchinbrook residents. This approach will minimise disruption to residents during the transition period.

The contract for the STP project works was awarded in June 2023 and has been awarded to Haslin Constructions. Works are expected to be completed in July 2024, subject to weather and site conditions.”

The normalisation of Port Hinchinbrook is expected to cost $19.3 million, with $17 million allocated towards the total STP project. These works would not have been made possible without the contribution of $12.3 million in funding provided by the Australian and State Governments.

Council has resolved that the $6,945,000 gap would be funded by borrowings and repayments made by those who benefit from the scheme. This project will not be funded by the broader ratepayer base.

Council, together with our State and Federal members have commenced advocating for additional financial contributions, with the aim of reducing the financial impact on Port Hinchinbrook residents and businesses.

The STP and normalisation project is funded by the Australian Government, Queensland Government and the Cassowary Coast Regional Council.

November 2023 Update- Notice of Nightworks

Council would like to advise you of nightworks occurring on Wednesday 8 November 2023, as part of the Port Hinchinbrook (Cardwell) Sewerage Treatment Plant works.

The contractor will be commencing work from 3:00am to complete the largest concrete pour for the project.

The recycled water tank slab presents a unique challenge due to its size and complexity. To ensure the highest standards of quality and long-term performance, the concrete pour must adhere to strict temperature and shrinkage limits and is vital for the long-term performance of this structure.

This is the last scheduled nightworks, with remainder of construction activities anticipated to be dayworks.

Nearby residents will receive notification of these works via a letter.

Noise Reduction Activities

In response to feedback from the community, the contractor has taken immediate action to mitigate the impact of construction activities on the surrounding area.

Furthermore, the contractor has taken steps to minimise noise disruptions by replacing diesel-powered lighting towers with silent spotlights and battery-powered tripod lights.

Following this concrete pour, site activities will revert to standard daylight hours starting from 6:30am on scheduled workdays.

Progress Photos

Normalisation of Port Hinchinbrook

Normalisation of Port Hinchinbrook

The Cassowary Coast Regional Council is committed to realising the normalisation of Port Hinchinbrook.

What this means for residents and the wider community, is the privately owned assets within Port Hinchinbrook, such as roads, bridges, culverts and sewerage, will be under the control of Council.

The normalisation project will see a new sewerage treatment plant (STP) being built to replace the current failing system as well as renewal of some pump station and effluent infrastructure, culverts and road assets.

Port Hinchinbrook is located just south of Cardwell. While the estate has been in liquidation there has been particular concern for the ongoing maintenance, and operation of the estate’s sewerage system. The solution for Hinchinbrook needs to be one that is long-term and can offer a secure future for the residents and opportunities for the development to realise the potential of this iconic destination on the doorstep of Hinchinbrook Island.

Officers have and continue to work with the Department of State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, the Liquidator for The Passage Holdings (in Liquidation) and the Australian Government to progress towards this long-term solution.

To achieve the required maintenance and upgrades, Council has secured funding from both the State Government and Federal Government with funding commitments to the project to date at a total of $12.3 million.

A strong focus has been required to achieve a balance between each of the funding agreements, to ensure they align as well as meet the required needs of the community.

Further Information

The Cassowary Coast Regional Council is pleased to provide the community with an update for ongoing construction works for the Port Hinchinbrook (Cardwell) Sewerage Treatment Plant (STP) project.

Works are well underway and significant progress has been made in various aspects of construction.

As we approach the hot summer months, and the start of our wet season, the project has gained momentum and is progressing slightly ahead of the planned program.

During summer, we face the additional challenge of rising temperatures. For the safety of workers, there may be instances where work commences at night or earlier in the day to ensure the welfare of workers and to mitigate these risks. The safety and well-being of the ground crew remains the key priority throughout construction in addition to minimising impacts on residents and the public.

Concrete base and wall pours

Construction crews have been completing concrete base pours, that will form the stable foundation that is essential for the STP’s structural integrity. Additionally, concrete pours for walls are progressing smoothly with further works planned in the coming months.

Earthworks and geotech for water tank

Earthworks and geotechnical activities are largely complete to prepare the site for the construction of the water tank. Undertaking these activities will ensure a strong foundation to optimise the tanks stability, which will improve longevity and functionality.

Earthworks, geotech, and pours for chemical receival bay

A chemical receival bay is a designated area where various chemicals used in the treatment process are received, stored, and managed. Concrete pours for this section will soon commence.

13 October 2022

The normalisation of Port Hinchinbrook is progressing with Cassowary Coast Regional Council focusing on a number of important projects across the suburb. The broader project has seen Council acquire road, sewerage, open space, storm water and water assets within Port Hinchinbrook. Council is working to maintain, renew and upgrade this infrastructure in line with Council’s current service standards across the region.

Major projects within Port Hinchinbrook include the design and construction of the Cardwell Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) and the emergency dredging of One Mile Creek.

Council has reached a significant milestone in the Cardwell Sewage Treatment Plant project with detailed design complete and released to market seeking suitably qualified contractors to deliver this key infrastructure. Council anticipates considering contract award in November 2022.

To provide for the operation of the new STP an application for an Environmental Authority was submitted in early September and is progressing toward approval. The Environmental Authority allows Council to operate the sewerage system and provide services to the Port Hinchinbrook community whilst complying with legislative requirements.

The emergency dredging of One Mile Creek is progressing with draft agreements provided to the Liquidator for access to dredge spoil ponds and approval to operate under the existing dredging permits. Once negotiations have been finalised an open tender will be undertaken to award the project for delivery. Council anticipates that works will commence early in 2023.

The transfer of ownership and control of the road, sewerage, stormwater and water assets to Council. This project will see State and Federal funding deliver rehabilitating sections of roads, replacing culverts, upgrading sewage systems and the construction of a new STP for the residents of Port Hinchinbrook.


The Queensland Government have allocated $6.3 million and the Federal Government $6 million. Funding agreements have been executed.


Council officially took ownership of the Port Hinchinbrook STP on 2 December 2021, and at Local Government Meeting 9 December 2021, Council resolved to progress with the normalisation of the estate based on funding from the State and Federal Governments.

With numerous failures of the estates ageing STP and associated infrastructure, this matter has been critical to resolve as releases to the environment had the very real potential to impact on public health and the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area.

The Port Hinchinbrook STP License agreements between the State, Council and Liquidator provides for secure sewerage services for residents whilst the normalisation of the private estate is finalised. This agreement reflects the commitment of the Queensland Government, Liquidator and Council to ensure that environmental releases from the estate are a thing of the past.

Major Benefits/ Project Outcomes

The project will work towards Council providing the services of sewerage, roads, parks, storm water and water management.

The project includes the acquisition of these current assets, some renewal, and upgrades to allow Council to provide services that align with our service standards.

Please contact Council via email, phone 1300 763 903 or visit the Cassowary Coast Regional Council on Facebook at Cassowary Coast Regional Council for more Major Project Updates.

Council Elected Members with Mr Nick Dametto MP and representatives from Haslin Construction

Council Elected Members with Mr Nick Dametto MP and representatives from Haslin Constructions