Australia: Construction & Infrastructure - What's News - 15 February 2016

Last Updated: 26 February 2016
Article by Troy Lewis, Janelle Kerrisk and Suzy Cairney

Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2017

In the media


Economic Conditions Facing the Construction Industry in 2016
This year commenced with a marked deterioration in economic sentiment. The primary catalysts were the (not mutually exclusive) concerns over the outlook for the Chinese economy and a sharp decline in oil prices, together with heightened geo-political risks and tensions (10 February 2016).  More...

Infrastructure Australia: New Assessment Framework guidance
IA initiated a review of the Assessment Framework that was coordinated internally, and undertaken with the assistance of external expert advisers. The review was completed and the Assessment Framework documents has been finalised in consultation with the states and territories in January 2016.  More...  More...

Opinion: Dodgy Section J changes dropped from updated National Construction Code
President of the Air Infiltration and Ventilation Association of Australia, Sean Maxwell, said he had looked at the building sealing parts of Section J of the 2016 NCC, stating It's basically unchanged from 2015, which means it is still weak, vague and unenforceable (08 February 2016).  More...

Timber Buildings to Rise Higher Following NCC Amendments 2
Approved changes to the National Construction Code (NCC) will see timber buildings in Australia rise to far greater heights starting from May 1, 2016. The changes to the NCC will permit the construction of Class 2, Class 3 and Class 5 timber buildings to effective heights of as high as 25 metres, which is roughly equivalent to eight storey (04 February 2016).  More...

Builders Back Return Of ABCC
Master Builders Australia welcomes the Government's commitment to re-establish the powers of the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) by reintroducing the ABCC Bill in the Parliament today (02 February 2016).  More...


More Non-compliant Cladding Uncovered in the Heart of Melbourne
The Victorian Building Authority's audit of high-rise buildings throughout inner-city Melbourne has uncovered more than a dozen instances of the use of potentially combustible non-compliant cladding (11 February 2016).  More...

Builder fined $45,500 for negligence and incompetence
A builder whose work was so poor it constituted 'gross negligence' and 'gross incompetence' has been fined the maximum penalty and will not be able to operate as a registered builder for a minimum of three years(03 February 2016).  More... 

Improved licensing and registration process to launch on 1 February 2016
From next week, the VBA will be implementing an improved system of registration and licensing for plumbers and builders. The new process is designed to deliver better outcomes for Victoria's building and plumbing industries and consumers (01 February 2016).  More...

New South Wales

NSW Government releases independent review into Rebuilding NSW report
Treasurer Gladys Berejiklian has today released an independent review into Deloitte Access Economics' (DAE) Economic Impact of State Infrastructure Strategy report (11 February 2016).  More...

Guildford Builder Prosecuted
An unlicensed builder from Guildford has been ordered by Parramatta Local Court to pay $75,775 in fines and costs as well as $14,700 consumer compensation. Paul Logan, trading as Paul Logan Creations, was convicted of various Consumer Law and Home Building Act 1989 violations (10 February 2016).   More...

Unlicensed Hunter Builders Prosecuted
Jason Tilse and Brent Tilse left a trail of defective roofing repairs and sub-standard incomplete renovations in their wake after charging their customers deposits well in excess of the 10 per cent permitted under the Home Building Act 1989 (10 February 2016).  More...

NSW building approvals at historic high
A record number of new homes were given the green light in NSW in 2015, official ABS figures have revealed. Today's data showed 66,705 homes were approved in the 12 months to December (03 February 2016).   More...

Austar Coal Mine extension approved
The Department of Planning and Environment has approved an application to expand mining at Austar Coal Mine near Cessnock, to allow extraction of an additional three underground longwall panels (02 February 2016).  More...


Queensland coal mine dust double the limit
Dust levels at a Queensland coal mine where three miners have been diagnosed with the deadly black lung disease have been recorded up to six times the legal limit (09 February 2016).  More...

$15 million more accelerated works projects for Mackay region
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has today announced the fast-tracking of more Government-funded capital works projects in the Mackay region (10 February 2016).  More...

Local team scores contract for the Port of Townsville's $55M upgrade
Townsville contractor CivilPlus Constructions has been awarded the design and construct tender for the primary wharf works component of Port of Townsville's $55 million Berth 4 Upgrade project (10 February 2016).   More...

Gold Coast company set to build Commonwealth Games Hockey venue
Gold Coast company Alder Constructions Pty Ltd has won the contract to upgrade the Gold Coast Hockey Centre ahead of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (05 February 2016).   More...

Solar power station in Collinsville could be under construction this year
Construction of a $100 million solar power station in Collinsville, North Queensland, could begin this year if a deal is struck for selling the electricity (02 February 2016).  More...

Practice and courts

Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Bill Reintroduced
‎The bill has been reintroduced into the House of Representative on 2 February 2016 without any amendments. The bill will, like its predecessor, re-establish the ABCC, described as a genuinely strong watchdog that will maintain the rule of law to protect workers and constructors and improve productivity on building sites (03 February 2016).  More...

NCC 2016 now online on the new ABCB website
The National Construction Code 2016 can now be accessed online on the new Australian Building Codes Board (ABCB) website (08 February 2016).   More...  More...

ABCB NCC Seminars 2016
The national seminars, running in February and March 2016 are presented by the ABCB and Standards Australia. These seminars will be held in each Australian capital city and will provide valuable information to building and plumbing practitioners on the changes included in the NCC 2016, which comes into effect on 1 May 2016. From 2016 onwards, the NCC will only be updated once every three years.  More...

ABCB: Condensation Survey
Stakeholders are invited to complete an online survey on condensation in residential buildings. The survey closes on 14 February 2016.  More...

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2015

QLD QBCC: New adjudication qualification course starts April 2016
A three day course will be delivered by Contract Administration Group Pty Ltd.  More...

QLD: Have your say on the Security of Payment discussion paper
The Security of Payment discussion paper has now been released and is available for detailed feedback. This aims to improve security of payment for subcontractors in the building and construction industry. Submissions close on 31 March 2016.  More...

QBCC Disciplinary actions
Licensees suspended or cancelled.  More...

VBA: Private bushfire shelters must comply and must have a building permit
Bushfire shelters that are not accredited must be thoroughly assessed for compliance with the NCC as part  of obtaining a building permit (03 February 2016).  More...


D&R Constructions (Aust) Pty Ltd v Wesiak [2016] NSWCATAP 38
Building contract- Held letter that respondents were seeking alternative quotations to complete building works and to then terminate the contract constituted repudiation entitling the appellant builder to terminate the contract - Consequential orders made.  More...

Tzaneros Investments Pty Limited v Walker Group Constructions Pty Limited [2016] NSWSC 50
BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS – warranties – assignment of warranties – effect of subsequent assignment of the subject-matter of the contract TORTS – negligence – existence of a duty of care – breach – whether claim apportionable under the Civil Liability Act 2002 (NSW) CONTRACT – ascertaining the parties to the contract EQUITY – estoppel – estoppel by convention DAMAGES – calculating loss – whether to discount award for betterment.  More...

Pittaway v Noosa Cat Australia Pty Ltd & Ors [2016] QCA 004
CONTRACTS – BUILDING, ENGINEERING, AND RELATED CONTRACTS – REMUNERATION – RECOVERY ON QUANTUM MERUIT – IN GENERAL – where the applicant and the respondent entered into two linked agreements, the Shed Agreement, where the applicant would build a shed for the respondent, and the Boat Agreement, where the respondent would build a boat for the applicant – where the applicant contended that he built the shed, but that the respondent did not pay the full amount for it, nor did they build the boat as required by the agreements – where the applicant started proceedings against the respondent in respect of damages for breach of contract – where orders were made in the District Court – where the applicant did not comply with those orders – where the respondent made an application to dismiss proceedings for want of prosecution under r 280 of the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 (Qld) – where that application succeeded – where the applicant seeks leave to appeal from the order dismissing the proceedings – whether an appeal is necessary to correct a substantial injustice – whether there is a reasonable argument that there is an error to be corrected.  More...

Draper v Simonds Homes Victoria Pty Ltd (Building and Property) [2016] VCAT 91
BUILDING AND PROPERTY LIST-major domestic building contract for erection of dwelling house–works currently suspended by the builder–contract remains in place–slab laid and frame and roof erected–all approved by building surveyor–owner alleges finished floor level of slab to be defective–owner also alleges frame and drainage to be defective–owner fears that founding material below slab may be defective–builder counterclaims under the contract for outstanding frame stage payment.  Application made by the Applicant, during period that the proceeding is reserved for decision, for the Tribunal to make certain requests of regulators, permitted under Schedule 1 to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998, and for an order that the respondent demolish the slab–application dismissed.  More...


R Developments Pty Ltd v Forth & Anor [2016] ACTSC 8
CONTRACT – Standard form building contract – contract wrongfully terminated by builder on basis of alleged failure by owner to comply with contractual requirement to provide evidence of capacity to pay amounts due under contract – not open to builder to rely on contractual requirement once building works commenced – no entitlement to rely on alternative power to end contract – counterclaim based on acceptance of wrongful termination as repudiation of contract – entitlement to damages on repudiation – quantum of damages not established.  More...


Building and Construction Industry (Consequential and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2013
Introduced HR 02/02/2016 - A Bill for an Act to deal with consequential and transitional matters arising from the enactment of the Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Act 2013, and for related purposes.  More...

Building and Construction Industry (Improving Productivity) Bill 2013
Introduced HR 02/02/2016 - A Bill for an Act to re-establish the Australian Building and Construction Commissioner, and for related purposes.  More...

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