Works plan stretches contractors

Connections contractors stretched to capacity by works program


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Major Australian civil engineering firm John Holland has said there’s insufficient contracting capacity in northern Victoria for this year’s Connections irrigation scheme Winter Works program.

Major Australian civil engineering firm John Holland has said there’s insufficient contracting capacity in northern Victoria for this year’s Connections irrigation scheme Winter Works program.

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WINTER WORKS: The Connections Winter Works program has stretched local subcontractors to capacity.

WINTER WORKS: The Connections Winter Works program has stretched local subcontractors to capacity.

Winter Works Project Development Manager, Bradd Hamersley said John Holland would have to hire sub-contractors from Melbourne, to help it complete the works, which are about to start.

“Pretty much all of that has been contested by the local market, to a point where they have said they no longer have the capability to respond to additional scope, we have exhausted all the capability,” Mr Hamersley said. “We are going to bring some Melbourne based contractors to help supplement that scope.

“We can’t stretch the local capability any further, these guys have said they can’t do any more – they have gone out and tried to joint venture, but in terms of responsibility, managing safety, giving value for money and certainty in delivery, these guys can’t deal with any more.”

He said John Holland was negotiating with Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) as to the length of channel remediation, which would occur under this year’s project. Between 42.6kilometres and 35.5kms of channel would be remediated. “In terms of the Winter Works, the only time to do that is when people are not irrigating.”

He said John Holland had four packages of work, including channel remediation, putting in pipelines and replacing old irrigation infrastructure with modern equipment.

“It’s a big package of work, it’s a lot of work to do, inside three months, with a very rapid ramp up for us and the local industry, in particular. It’s over the entire Goulburn Murray Irrigation District (GMID) it’s everywhere, from Torrumbarry, around Shepparton, Echuca, Kyabram, the Murray Valley.”

In announcing the works, GMW said another 430 automated channel regulators would be installed, along with 160km of new pipeline and another 3700 meters would be replaced, rationalised or retained.

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