WA: The state of opportunity

The Western Australian Major Projects Conference is set to host some of the largest names in the infrastructure industry and  provide an update of major projects. Conference Producer Kushlani Premachandra outlines the must-see presentations.

The Bunbury Outer Ring Road (BORR) project has been in the Western Australian pipeline for a number of years. Changes in land use planning and environmental values required a detailed project review. Main Roads WA has recently completed over 18 months of investigations, informed by detailed environmental site surveys and engagement with local government, the freight industry, business groups and surrounding communities.

A revised alignment for the northern section of the project has been identified, while the long-planned southern section alignment has been confirmed. 

Project development work is concluding, with Main Roads seeking environmental and heritage approvals before construction.

BORR will provide a 27-kilometre highway connecting the Forrest and Bussell Highways.

An update on the BORR will be presented at the 11th Annual WA Major Projects Conference. Dominic Boyle from Main Roads WA will present the planning and project development, with Mark Hazebroek updating on project delivery, including its procurement approach.

The WA Government has committed $4.2 billion to fund road projects state-wide. 

The Major Projects Conference will explore road and infrastructure works, including the METRONET Rail Project, Perth Airport’s Master Plan and the Yanchep Rail extension.

Expotrade Conference Producer Kushlani Premachandra says delegates will receive firsthand updates from project executive teams to clarify any future opportunities. 

With the newly established Infrastructure WA and DevelopmentWA, the conference offers a unique chance for delegates to interact with newly appointed executives and board members.

“At the conference, delegates will be able to make the contacts necessary to be at the forefront of major growth and infrastructural change in WA,” Ms. Premachandra says.

Alongside presentations, the event will facilitate at least six hours of networking.

“This unique blend of information and networking provides an in-depth view of the work opportunities available to delegates.” 

‘Roads to health’ will be a conference focus, discussed by representatives from Main Roads Western Australia as well as the Departments of Transport and Health.

The topic will cover how transport projects will connect residents of the state to vital health infrastructure upgrades.

“The conference aims to intertwine the two subsectors, providing a holistic array of jobs for contractors seeking to benefit from roads and health projects,” she says. 

Infrastructure WA Chair John Langoulant AO will also present on the organisation’s proposed 20-year State Infrastructure strategy. 

The new initiative aims to report on and provide advice for major project priorities, funding and finance options.

Kevin Brown, Perth Airport CEO, will detail the precinct’s master plan and the required airport infrastructure that is anticipated with the state’s population growth.

Ms. Premachandra says the BORR presentation will detail the project, and highlight local industry opportunities.

Main Roads WA’s Mark Hazebroek, who will present on BORR, says the agency will apply the Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia’s new Infrastructure Sustainability V2.0 Planning Rating Tool to the project – one of the first in Australia and New Zealand to do so. 

Maximising local business participation is another key objective for the BORR project. 

“Ensuring local and Aboriginal businesses and employees benefit from BORR construction is a state government priority and we are working on a range of initiatives to achieve this,” Mr. Hazebroek says.

One initative involved developing a local business register. 

“Once a final contract is in place, it will feature initiatives targeted to lower-level prequalified contractors,” he says.

Delegates can expect to learn about the BORR project’s planning history, scope, expected benefits, planned delivery method, procurement process, upcoming design and construction challenges and its focus on local and Aboriginal content.

Ms. Premachandra says there are a number of other conference presentations worth attending, which at first glance may not seem specifically relevant to roads.

“The Subiaco East Redevelopment Project address by the Department of Health and the Eliwana iron ore mine and rail project are just some non-roads projects that industry could benefit from, especially for smaller-scale works,” she says.

“As a major projects event we draw from infrastructure topics relevant to all sectors and communities. Projects are like dominos – you start one and soon enough others will follow, allowing for maximum impact across the sector.”

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