Defence Projects Pave the Way for Resurgent Victorian Construction

In early July it was announced that the Federal Government will dedicate $270b to new Defence projects over the next ten years. 

The Department of Defence has released three new projects in Victoria.

Stage 1 of the Armoured Fighting Vehicles Facilities Program’s (AFVFP) project will comprise works including the demolition of buildings, refurbishment and construction within the current training precinct. 

The AFVFP project is valued at $100-200m with construction aimed to start in July 2020 and completion of the works aimed for October 2023. 

The second project is the Victoria Barracks Melbourne (VBM), valued between $220-240m with construction aimed to start in June 2020 until November 2022. 

The department’s third project, the Puckapunyal Health and Wellbeing Centre includes the design and construction of a new space which will include a 25-metre indoor swimming pool, 1,280 sqm gym, car park and office facilities. 

The project is valued at between $35-40m with the awarded builder notified in August 2020 and completion of the works aimed for March 2022.

Downer, Watpac, Hansen Yuncken, Kane and Lend Lease all have a history in building defence projects and are expected to tender. 

Downer has supported the Defence industry for nearly 80 years and the Department of Defence is one of Downer’s longest-standing customers. Some of Downer’s Defence work includes; Shoalwater Bay training area remediation, RAAF airfield pavement works and Oakey Hail Damage Building Remediation.

Watpac has completed a range of Defence projects across the country, most notably, the Base Security Improvement Program valued at $179m, the Single LEAF Phase 1 valued at $216m and Phase 2 which is in progress and valued at $96m. 

Hansen Yuncken’s previous projects in the space include completing the ASC Shipyard Development valued at $109m, the ELF Siad Works valued at $26m and the Royal Australian Navy’s premier training campus, HMAS Creswell valued at $90m. 

Kane has completed Defence projects including the Defence Relocation of 613 Squadron AAF Cadets Edinburgh valued at $600k, the Department of Defence Land 400 Project valued at $5m and maintenance of the Monegeetta Range Test Track valued at $1.4m. 

Lendlease was awarded the contract for the new Defence facilities in Western Australia earlier this year. The project is valued at $365m and will support up to 750 construction jobs. 

Lendlease is currently redeveloping the HMAS Cerberus which the Department has allocated $463m towards repair costs and aims to be finalised by 2025. 

In late 2019, CPB Contractors were selected by the Department to build two new Defence projects including the Point Wilson Waterside Infrastructure Remediation project to be completed by 2022 and the updating of the RAAF Base Pearce for New Aircraft in Sale. 

With such a breadth of experienced builders expected to tender, it’s a win for the Department of Defence no matter which builder is awarded.

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