Top 10 Construction Stories of 2020

Looking back on a year as tumultuous as 2020 and although there have been plenty of lows, there’s been just as many highlights. We’ve ranked our top 10 construction stories of the year, so you can reflect on some of the wins for the industry in Australia.

Chinese Buyer Groups Close in on Probuild Purchase

The sale of Probuild began in 2020, with two prominent Chinese companies tipped to have placed bids to acquire the construction giant. China State Construction Engineering and China Railway Construction Corporation were rumoured to bid. There’s been plenty of speculation but still no confirmation as to when or if this will go ahead. Read more… 

Grocon Sells Rights to Darling Harbour Ribbon Project

In February, Grocon sold the development and construction rights to its eye-catching Ribbon building in Darling Harbour to Chinese-backed Greaton Development. The $730 million sale was originally agreed upon in 2016. This transaction was a popular topic however as the year went on it’s widely known Grocon ran into some challenges. Read more… 

What Happened to Grollo Tower?

The purchase by Grocon of a $65m site in Docklands had us reminiscing about the ill-fated Grollo Tower, which in the late 90s was slated to be the Southern Hemisphere’s tallest building. Read more… 

Builders Invited to Tender for Richmond Plaza

In March, Grocon invited a number of Tier-1 builders to tender for its Richmond Plaza redevelopment at 271 Bridge Road, which is set to include residential, retail and hospitality space. Hacer won the tender and works are in progress. Read more…

Multiplex Announced Preferred for $1.5B Footscray Hospital

Multiplex, alongside a consortium of Plenary Group, Sojitz Corporation, Honeywell and Compass, was announced preferred builder for the Footscray Hospital redevelopment, which was first announced by the Andrews Government in 2018. Read more… 

John Holland Group to Restructure Construction Division

JHG’s parent company, China Communications Construction Company, announced a leadership restructure this year, announcing Bo Wang as the company’s chairman. 2020 has been a big year for John Holland Group with Melbourne Heart Hospital and Chisholm Road Prison in full swing. Read more… 

Hacer Successful Contractor for Richmond Quarter

Grocon found both a name and a builder for its Bridge Road mixed-use development, with Hacer the winning bidder on the $200m project. Hacer broke ground 3 months ago and the project is really beginning to take shape. Read more… 

Lendlease Wins Contract for $500 Million Airport Redevelopment

The contract for the half-billion dollar infield redevelopment of Melbourne Airport Terminals 2 and 3 was awarded to Lendlease, cementing the company’s presence as a major player in the civil construction industry. Whilst Covid-19 put this project on pause, we’re excited to see it begin in 2021 all going well. Read more… 

Watpac Announces Simon Ballard as New State Manager for Victoria

Watpac began its 2020 by welcoming new leadership for Victoria, appointing Simon Ballard as State Manager. The leadership change came shortly after a corporate restructure which saw former Besix – which had acquired Watpac in 2018 – executive Jean-Pol Bouharmont assume the role of Chief Executive. Watpac consolidated it’s new offering and structure with Besix throughout 2020. Read more… 

Seamus Egan Joins Watpac as New Business Manager

In yet another move to create a strong leadership team, Watpac appointed Seamus Egan, formerly of Probuild, as Business Manager for Victoria and South Australia. Watpac and Seamus finished the year off with a bang after their successful tender win on the high-tech vaccine plant project in Tullamarine, circa $800M. Read more…

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Image source: Ellis Air

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