Thursday, June 8, 2023


Building & Construction

Helping with housing rural workers

The Queensland Rural and Industry Development Authority is offering loans to help growers build small-scale rural workers’ accommodation. QRIDA Regional Area Manager for South East Queensland Brian Coe said providing accommodation for workers could give farm businesses a competitive edge with Australia’s low unemployment rate and rural housing shortage.

Construction of new cabins underway

West Wimmera Shire Council is pleased to announce that construction has commenced on the new cabins for the Kaniva Caravan Park. The new cabins are part of the 'Cabins Across the Wimmera Mallee: Strengthening the Visitor Economy' initiative, a collaboration between Council, the Wimmera Development Association, and Hindmarsh, Buloke, and Yarriambiack shires.

Housing expectations killing the bush

Despite the cheap price of land in the Wheatbelt, and the abundance of jobs, country towns are not being bowled over by first home buyers, so what’s going on? ... We are following the route that the rust belt States across America have experienced for the past 50 years as cities like Detroit has collapsed from 1.7m people in the 1950s to 700,000 today ... for the benefit of the National Party, Liberals and Labor if listening, here is a policy idea which you could run with at the next election.

Leeton’s Roxy development in limbo

Roxy Theatre project developers the Lloyd Group entered voluntary administration on Friday. Leeton Shire Council was telephonically advised at 11.30am that day that the Lloyd Group had gone into voluntary administration at 7am that morning. The Group has 59 state and local government projects under construction in Victoria and NSW.

Rules changed in bid to boost accommodation

Ancillary dwellings or granny flats and detached habitable rooms in the Denmark shire will be limited to 70sqm and 30sqm of outdoor living space ... The Shire wanted to streamline granny flat development in a effort to combat the growing rental crisis in the town.

Local architect goes on tour

The founder of a new regional-based architectural firm has been recognised for her innovative work in the field with a coveted national award ... Sarah Lebner returned to the area last year and started Cooee Architecture, a new regional practice based near Bringenbrong focusing on energy-efficient and low-carbon homes.

First look at new school

Toowoomba Catholic Schools (TCS) has released the plans for its new school, St Francis Catholic College at Westbrook, and there’s an opportunity for locals to have a say on the project ... Covering nearly 10 hectares of land, TCS plans for the college to include educational, cultural and sporting facilities and to become a hub for community use outside of school hours.

A new Territory Worker Connect Portal and UK delegation to yield a boost for hospitality workforce: Fyles, Kirby

A delegation of Territory business will aim to recruit 100 hospitality workers when they visit the United Kingdom and Ireland next month to increase our skilled workforce through the Global Worker Attraction Program.

Porcupine Village update

The Times spoke to Porcupine Village owner Frank Hutchinson this week about the recent shutdown of works at the site. From the start of this project, Frank and the management team were taking advice from a Town Planning consultant with over 30 years’ experience ... Frank is now working with a Melbourne-based group of town planners who have a great deal of experience in dealing with complex planning issues.

Construction companies shortlisted to build $8 billion worth of new hospitals and major expansions: D’Ath

Queensland Health has established a supplier panel of major construction companies to accelerate the delivery of three new hospitals and nine major hospital expansions under the Palaszczuk Government’s Queensland Health and Hospitals Plan ... “The building contractor shortlist of 12 was established based on an expression of interest process and through Queensland Health’s broader engagement with industry": Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Yvette D’Ath.

Consortium departs for Philippines and India on skilled worker search: Kirby

A consortium of Territory businesses are heading to the Philippines and India ... to recruit much needed construction workers and other critical workers needed across the economy ... The expos will promote the Territory as a preferred destination to live and work as well as facilitate connections between potential workers and Northern Territory businesses. Master Builders Global Roadshow will help raise the profile of the Territory and expand and diversify our skill base.

SA products for SA public homes: Mullighan, Michaels

Public houses built in South Australia must use products manufactured in this state, under ground-breaking mandates introduced by the Malinauskas Government ... From now, South-Australian manufactured products must be used on public housing construction and maintenance programs, where available.

Push to turn forgotten ‘wet’ trades into a hot ticket: Katter

Katter’s Australian Party is flagging a proposal incentivising Year 12 students to take up the forgotten “wet” trades of bricklaying, concreting and scaffolding in a transitional schedule strategically-timed with the winter weather. In response to predictions that North Queensland would face an alarming lack of willing workers in the “wet” trades of bricklaying, concreting and scaffolding in the next decade, the KAP proposed to incentivise and provide employment pathways for an annually-set number of Year 12 students.

Glider crisis

Logging contractors in Central and West Gippsland with virtually no work, a large mill in Orbost running out of log supply, while a new poll shows Victorians overwhelmingly support home grown timber for housing. Welcome to the paradox and crisis facing Victoria’s forest industry; the native forest sector, largely based in Gippsland, is at a virtual standstill due to legal action by environmentalists and decisions by the Supreme Court, as demand for native hardwood because of its beauty, strength and durability remains high.

Building Ministers finalise NCC 2022: ABCB

As of NCC 2022, new residential dwellings will need to achieve the equivalent of “7 stars” NatHERS thermal performance. New homes will also have a new annual energy use budget applicable to the home’s major appliances such as space conditioning, hot water, lighting, pool and spa pumps, and any on-site renewable energy generation.

New homes to be fit for all: de Brenni

Queensland Minister for Energy and Public Works Mick de Brenni said the changes to the National Construction Code 2022, covered making homes more accessible for people with mobility challenges, and increased the energy efficiency and electric vehicle readiness of new homes.

Collie holds key to unique manufacture of concrete: MacTiernan

The Murdoch University research team - working with local industry including Synergy, Bluewaters Power Station and South32 - investigated the feasibility of using fly ash and other industrial by-products and waste materials as an ingredient in a low carbon concrete product called 'Colliecrete'.

Karratha lots open opportunity for growing regional hub: Carey

New opportunities to build in the growing regional hub of Karratha are now available, with the release of a range of residential and commercial lots in the Pilbara city. Ten large homesites at the award-winning Baynton West residential estate are being offered for sale ... At the nearby Tambrey Neighbourhood Centre, expressions of interest will soon be sought from developers for two commercial sites at the emerging mixed-use precinct.

NSW taxpayer helping to fund Atlassian’s new office – but, will anyone be there?

Back in those dreary days of 2021 when we were still being locked down, Atlassian announced that its workers would need to attend at the office just four (yes, 4) times per annum ... So why has the NSW Government kicked-in $48.2m to assist in providing an office for… people who won’t be there? Especially when, as Atlassian management states in their latest Shareholder Letter, they are "Running a software company with nearly $3b in revenue".

Toowoomba Regional Council removes red tape to aid housing supply

Toowoomba Regional Council has endorsed seeking Ministerial approval to remove regulations to aid new housing supply. TRC Planning and Development Committee chair Cr Megan O’Hara Sullivan said this was part of four measures Council would use to simplify and speed up the approval process for new housing across the Region.

Did you object or support the DA? Iron Gates report is in

An independent report on the Iron Gates subdivision has been completed by town planner and consultant Malcolm Scott. The report was done for the Richmond Valley Council and will go to the Northern Regional Planning Panel later this month or early in August.

Multi-million dollar investment

Narrandera Shire Council has now paved the way for two major manufacturing industries to establish at Red Hill Industrial Estate ... “This is a landmark announcement. Today I can formally identify the Bhullar Group - who plan to establish a major steel fabrication factory and industry training facility ... Additionally, Hi-Tech Modular Homes plans to establish a purpose-built state-of-the-art manufacturing facility ... " : Mayor Kschencka.

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