Australia: Construction & Infrastructure News – 20 June 2018

Last Updated: 25 June 2018
Article by Troy Lewis, Stephen Burton, Suzy Cairney, Stephen Natoli, Kyle Siebel, Scott Alden, Christine Jones and Helena Golovanoff

Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2018

In the media

What can Governments do to foster sustainable construction?
Back in 2007, Australia had a broad consensus about dealing with climate change and establishing an emissions trading scheme and carbon price. Fast forward several years and this has all but collapsed (15 June 2018). More...

Budget contains hidden investment 'timebomb'
Tens of billions of dollars in "off-budget" Federal Government investments are escaping public scrutiny and may never be properly accounted for, according to a leading independent economist and a Labor Member of Parliament's audit committee (14 June 2018). More...

Considering nature at the heart of our buildings
As an industry, the Australian built environment has committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050 and is already working collaboratively to h (14 June 2018). More...

'War for talent' as mining and infrastructure compete for workers
A new report finds a dramatic increase in demand for mining sector jobs, but with the upsurge comes the problem of meeting demand (13 June 2018). More...

Infrastructure reforms could deliver $66bn boost to Australian economy
New economic modelling released by Infrastructure Australia shows that introducing incentive payments to encourage the states and territories to progress nation-shaping infrastructure reforms could boost the economy by $66 billion and deliver better infrastructure for our growing cities and regions (04 June 2018). More...


Melbourne dominates Australia's Housing Hotspots List
According to the HIA Population & Residential Building Hotspots Report 2018, the Mickleham-Yuroke area of Melbourne is Australia's number one hotspot, with population growth of 35.3 per cent during 2016/17 and $222.9 million in building approvals (15 June 2018). More...

Concrete plans to support infrastructure pipeline
The Andrews Labor Government has launched the Helping Victoria Grow: Extractive Resources Strategy, to try to reduce the transport costs associated with infrastructure projects by locating quarries as close as possible to where the material is needed. Improved planning will help current quarries to keep operating and develop new sites alongside growing suburbs and communities (15 June 2018). More...

Victorian builder is creating Australian-first energy efficient housing development
A Victorian builder is designing and building Australian homes greener and more energy efficient than ever before with a landmark new project (14 June 2018). More...

Bold new designs revealed for Metro Tunnel stations
Melbourne will boast five new stunning landmarks when the underground stations for the Metro Tunnel open in 2025 (12 June 2018). More...

New South Wales

New South Wales Budget 2018 - Biggest schools building program in history gets even bigger
The New South Wales Government will invest a staggering $6 billion over the next four years to deliver more than 170 new and upgraded schools to support communities throughout New South Wales, representing the largest investment into schools by any state government in history (14 June 2018). More...

Lendlease scores approval for second Barangaroo timber building
Barangaroo South will welcome a sister building for its super-sustainable engineered timber International House Sydney, with planning approval granted for Daramu House (12 June 2018). More...

Parramatta Light Rail construction starts soon
Following planning approval, construction of stage one of the Parramatta Light Rail will start by the end of 2018 and services will begin in 2023 (12 June 2018). More...

Future infrastructure projects to train thousands more apprentices
Thousands of tradie apprenticeships will be created, with the New South Wales Government to ensure 20 per cent of trade roles on all future construction projects will be filled by apprentices (07 June 2018). More...

Update on the Fire Safety and External Wall Cladding Taskforce
In total, Fire & Rescue NSW has visited, inspected and assessed over 2280 sites identified through the initial audit. The Taskforce's work to identify buildings that have been inspected and assessed and the ACP cladding remains ongoing (04 June 2018). More...


The hunt begins for Queen's Wharf construction workers
The hunt for workers to deliver Brisbane's $3.6 billion Queen's Wharf development has begun, says Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones (14 June 2018). More...

Gas investment flows in Queensland
Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham has welcomed Santos' next job-generating stage of the GLNG development near Injune in Queensland's Central highlands (14 June 2018). More...

Cross River Rail will deliver 450 jobs for young Queenslanders
Deputy Premier and Treasurer Jackie Trad has announced the Cross River Rail Project would generate 450 new apprenticeships and traineeships for young Queenslanders during the construction life of the $5.4 billion project (13 June 2018). More...

Security of payment implementation supporting Queensland jobs
The Palaszczuk Government has announced the next phase of implementation of its historic Building Industry Fairness legislation, which will deliver further security for Queensland subcontractors (12 June 2018). More...

Borrow to build' budget needs no apology, Queensland Treasurer says
Queensland's state debt is set to increase to $83 billion in the next four years, with new Treasurer Jackie Trad saying she makes no apologies for spending to drive the economy (09 June 2018). More...


Queensland major projects pipeline 2018
Queensland Major Contractors Association, Construction Skills Queensland, Infrastructure Association of Queensland; Construction Skills Queensland: 04 June 2018
The key finding of this report is that major project work has risen by 58% in 2017/2018 to $6.9 billion, after two successive years of low activity. More...

Making reform happen
Infrastructure Australia: 04 June 2018
This economic modelling, released by Infrastructure Australia, shows that introducing incentive payments to encourage the states and territories to progress nation-shaping infrastructure reforms could boost the economy by $66 billion and deliver better infrastructure for our growing cities and regions. More...

The economic impact of infrastructure reform: Speech
Infrastructure Australia Chair Julieanne Alroe, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia (IPA) Leaders' Luncheon on 15 June 2018
Discusses the findings of the Making Reform Happen advisory paper, on how to implement an incentive-based funding approach to infrastructure reform. More...

ACI Construction Briefs
A fortnightly communication highlighting key updates related to Australia's construction industry. More... (12 June 2018)

Australian Bureau of Statistics
12/06/2018 Housing Finance, Australia, April 2018 (cat no. 5609.0).

Practice and courts

ABCC: Minimum wage increase – make sure you are paying the right rate
On Friday 1 June 2018 the Fair Work Commission announced a 3.5% increase to the minimum wage. The increase applies from the first full pay period starting on or after 1 July 2018 (05 June 2018). More...

National Community Engagement for Infrastructure Forum 2018
The Forum (NCEIF) will provide insight on advancing community consultation in the infrastructure and natural resources space; discovering new industry trends and policies which may impact the community engagement framework and the development of infrastructure projects now and in the future; and exploring new tools and the latest research to support community and stakeholder engagement in infrastructure. Date: 19 – 20 July 2018 at the Crown Conference Centre in Melbourne. More...


VBA drives further crackdown on combustible cladding
The Victorian Building Authority is contacting registered builders and property developers asking for a report on the type of cladding they intend to use on the exteriors of projects and multi-storey buildings under construction (31 May 2018). More...

Victorian building permit activity for April 2018
The VBA has released building permit activity data for April 2018 (30 May 2018). More...

New South Wales

More housing options for New South Wales: Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code
The new Code will allow one and two storey dual occupancies, manor houses and terraces to be built under fast-track complying development approval across New South Wales and also promotes good design for medium density housing. Low rise medium density housing as complying development is only allowed where medium density development is already permitted under a council's local environmental plan. The Medium Density Housing Code will commence on 6 July 2018.

Greenfield Housing Code
The changes start on 6 July 2018, the new Code will be included in the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008. In essence, it is a simplifying of the development process, and aligning the requirements for development across greenfield areas. The planning rules and the code are also presented in plain English for clearer explanation. Note: There will be a three-year transitional period, where applicants can choose whether to use the Greenfield Code, or the new simplified Housing Code or Transitional Code (until 13 July 2019). More...


Builders Queensland: Latest BIF update
The Queensland Government released a statement regarding the next phase of implementation of security of payments and the Building Industry Fairness legislation (13 June 2018). More...

Master Builders Queensland: What you need to know about the waste levy
A waste levy of $70/tonne will commence in the first quarter of 2019 (05 June 2018). More...


New South Wales

Pinnacle Construction Group Pty Ltd v Dimension Joinery & Interiors Pty Ltd [2018] NSWSC 894
BUILDING AND CONSTRUCTION – whether adjudication determination under Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 1999 should be quashed – whether payment claim valid – whether reference date available to support payment claim – whether adjudicator denied procedural fairness to respondent to payment claim - Building and Construction Industry Security of Payment Act 1999 (NSW).

Broken Hill City Council v Unique Urban Built Pty Ltd [2018] NSWSC 825
COMMERCIAL ARBITRATION – Commercial Arbitration Act 2010 (NSW) – application for an order that the plaintiff and first defendant be referred to arbitration – arbitration agreement – whether there is an operative agreement between the parties to submit to arbitration – the meaning of inoperative – where the person prescribed in the contract to nominate an arbitrator does not exist – whether non-existence of person prescribed to nominate an arbitrator renders the agreement inoperative; HELD – the parties' arbitration agreement is operative – plaintiff and first defendant referred to arbitration.
The Council retained Urban to upgrade the Broken Hill Civic Centre. Their contract is written and in the form AS4000 – 1997 published by Standards Australia (the Contract).
The Council retained the second defendant architects (the Architects) to design the upgrade, to be project manager for the works and to administer the Contract.


Bose v Muggeridge Constructions Pty Ltd [2018] QDC 075
CONTRACTS – GENERAL CONTRACTUAL PRINCIPLES – CONSTRUCTION AND INTERPRETATION OF CONTRACTS – where the applicants and respondent were parties to a contract for construction of an apartment building by the respondent – where the contract provided for a defect liability period and security for the applicant by way of money or bank guarantee – where bank guarantees expired prior to the expiry of the defect liability period – whether implied term that bank guarantees would not expire prior to the end of the defect liability period – whether required to give business efficacy to the contract.
CONTRACT – REMEDIES FOR BREACH OF CONTRACT – DAMAGES – SPECIFIC PERFORMANCE – whether damages are an adequate remedy – where an order for damages may cause harm to the applicants – where specific performance will not negatively affect the respondents – whether specific performance should be granted.

Lim v Queensland Building and Construction Commission [2018] QCAT 156
INSURANCE – PROPERTY AND PECUNIARY LOSS INSURANCE – DOMESTIC BUILDING CONSTRUCTION INSURANCE – where insurer accepted some items and declined other items – where decision based mostly on earlier 'Direction to Rectify' – where applicant did not apply to review earlier Decisions and is now out of time to seek review of those Decisions – where Tribunal's jurisdiction does not extend to disturbing decisions that were reviewable but not reviewed.
PROCEDURE – CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS – ENDING PROCEEDINGS EARLY – SUMMARY DISMISSAL – GENERALLY – where application to review decision under Home Warranty Insurance Scheme cannot be used as de facto review of decisions about 'Direction to Rectify' – where applicant did not file material or direct submissions other than his disagreement with 'Direction to Rectify' – where Tribunal did not have power in its review jurisdiction for any purpose other than dealing with precise decision under review – where application misconceived and lacking in substance.

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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Suzy Cairney
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