Civilex Recognises its Longest Serving Members

The era of employment for life is now something of the past but is the loyalty to one company over the long term well and truly over just yet? Well, that probably depends on the company you’re working for.

Civilex has recognised and inducted its longest-serving employees into the inaugural Five Year Club. If the career statistics are accurate, the Five Year Club at any company is one that few people will qualify for in their lifetime. It’s been stated that the average person changes jobs 10-15 times throughout their career, and according to a recent study by McCrindle, the national average time spent in a position across all age groups is 3 years and 4 months. So, a five-year milestone is one to be celebrated, if only for its exceptionality alone!

Congratulations to our employees on being recognised and inducted into the Civilex Five-Year Club.

Civilex recently hosted a special lunch event for 14 employees who had reached the five-plus year milestone with the company. Held at The Railway Club Hotel, the lunch was a chance to recognise and acknowledge Civilex staff who have been with the company over a longer period of time – with a handful of them nearing or having already reached a decade. It was also an opportunity to celebrate together with company directors and colleagues.

It’s well known the benefits of employees remaining with the one company for a longer period of time: leadership opportunities, building a reputation of dependability, creating strong and long-lasting work relationships, accessing special job benefits, accruing large amounts of knowledge that hold value within the company, and gaining expertise in a particular industry. And all this is certainly the case at Civilex where we value the contribution that our employees provide and their camaraderie to this still-feels-like-a-family-business style of culture. And that’s something you just can’t buy.

On behalf of Civilex, we warmly welcome you to The Five Year Club. Let’s hear what this milestone means for a few of the inductees:

George Markelis, HSE Manager (commenced 2011)

What does it mean being recognised for your 5+ year tenure at Civilex?
Ultimately, for me, it means there’s a great employee-employer relationship. This 5-year initiative consolidates a culture of teamwork and support across all departments and roles within the business: from Labourers to Directors. This was clearly made evident via the stories recounted amongst the 5 Year Club inductees with plenty of laughs shared between all of us at all levels within the business while reflecting on all our journey and collective experiences. This might be why the high level of commitment exists amongst so many long-serving employees – we’re APPRECIATED!

What did you like about the 5+ Year Club recognition lunch?
Food was great; you can always count on a great spread when Civilex is hosting! The atmosphere – same as above. A united and happy group, with a real sense of ownership in our diverse roles, and a feeling of mutual appreciation and respect, with a healthy network of long-term relationships. And the 5 Year Club Jackets – great quality, just the right level of statement with the badge too!

What is the greatest benefit of staying with one company for 5+ years?
It’s everything I’ve mentioned, but most importantly the long-term relationships created over these years. I’ve really been able to get to know my teammates – I feel like I work for them in a supportive environment that offers opportunities for personal growth and a sense of fulfillment and achievement.

Deanne Gibson, Construction Finance Manager (commenced 2008)

What does it mean being recognised for your 5+ year tenure at Civilex?
I cannot believe how fast the years have gone since I started with Civilex. It is great to be acknowledged by our Directors for all the years of our hard work.

What did you like about the 5+ Year Club lunch?
It was great to spend the afternoon with all my old colleagues who I don’t get to see that often as they have moved to different departments since starting here. It was great to reminisce about the old days.

What is the greatest benefit of staying with one company for 5+ years?
Seeing the company grow from the beginning and how it has completely transformed is an amazing thing to be part of. Growing and developing alongside Civilex and seeing the change in me is one of the greatest personal benefits. I really enjoy the people I work with; everyone is friendly and helpful. It helps to have a great company culture and that’s what has kept me here all these years!

Craig Hoffman, Leading Hand (commenced 2010)

What does it mean being recognised for your 5+ year tenure at Civilex?
It’s nice to know that being loyal to one company is recognised and celebrated.

What did you like about the 5+ Year Club lunch?
Lunch was great; food was delicious. It was nice to be in a relaxed environment and enjoy a couple of drinks with everyone including the Directors.

What is the greatest benefit of staying with one company for 5+ years?
It’s great being part of our company’s growth and watching it develop from the small company it was when I started eight years ago to the market leader it is today. Personally, I’ve enjoyed developing the great relationships I have along the way and having the opportunity to learn different skill sets and teaching others what I’ve learned.

Again congratulations to all of our employees on reaching this exceptional milestone.

Five Year Club Inductees for 2018:
Aaron McArthur, Ben Rossignuolo, George Markelis, Luke Spiteri, Michelle Bartolo, Olivia Bartolo, Ray Po’Ching, Scott Macur, Stuart Smart, David Scott, Deanne Gibson, Sam Scacco, Paul Brunato, and Craig Hoffman.

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International Women in Engineering Day

23 June 2018. A day that sees women from Saudi Arabia granted the right to drive a car in their country for the very first time. It’s also a day dedicated to celebrating women in engineering. Last Saturday was International Women in Engineering Day and although it’s truly wonderful to see the last female driving ban in the world lifted – it’s also incredibly inspiring to have a day dedicated to getting real about women in engineering and construction and raising the profile of women in engineering.

As a company, Civilex has intentionally created, nurtured and maintained a welcoming, high-performance culture integrating family values with professional engagement and results. Civilex aims to not only attract more women into the civil construction and engineering space but also actively looks at how best to keep its people – both women and men – in traditionally demanding roles.

Civilex, along with Victoria’s chief engineer Collette Burke, aims to interrupt the current low levels of female representation and lift the bar in the engineering and construction profession and address the underlying barriers that prevent both women and men stepping up into more senior roles within the industry.

Featured in The Age Victoria’s chief engineer Collette Burke shares her views. The article also reveals the startling state of play: just 13.6% of engineers in Australia are women (Census data 2016). And that figure is up from 10.6% a decade earlier. Realistically the statistics are probably lower in the construction arena.

I recently sat down with one of Civilex’s senior managers – Jen Robertson – in her role as Construction Manager and asked her to share her experiences in the civil construction and engineering industry, the advice she would give women wanting to enter the industry, and hopes she holds now and for the future.

Jen’s Background
Jen studied Civil Engineering at the University of Melbourne and worked in the construction field during her 20s. “I really enjoyed being involved in the physical construction side of projects rather than in an office environment when I first started out.” It was in her late 20s and early 30s that Jen started looking at different roles in the construction industry, moving away from the onsite management responsibilities. “Women often look too far ahead into the future. I did – focussing on the traditional 12-hour days 6 days a week workload and realising that just wasn’t possible if I had a family. So I started looking for other opportunities with the company and elsewhere.”

The engineering and construction industry has customarily been known to have overworked and burnt out employees living by the traditionally held view you need to work one zillion hours to get the job done. But if we are to take anything away from Jen’s message it is: it doesn’t have to be that way. There is a new way forward.

Citing the book by technology executive Sheryl Sandberg Lean In, Jen says, “it’s so important to play full out today and not needlessly worry about how tomorrow or in 10 years’ time looks. Worry about tomorrow then, not now.”

Jen’s Construction Journey
Jen has worked with three companies since she graduated from university. Previously at Leighton Contractors (now CBP) for 13 years and the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) for two years, and since October 2017 she has been part of the Civilex family.

“When I worked with Leighton Contractors there was not one female Project Manager in Victoria. I remember having to travel across the country to Kalgoorlie in the West Australian mines to physically see and talk with a female Project Manager for Leighton. That’s the extent of effort we had to make back then.”

In between having two children, Jen has continued working the industry, albeit with some adjustments. “I decided to jump into a Senior Project Engineer role, then I fell pregnant and took maternity leave. Ten months into my mat leave I decided to return to work and together with my manager who was also looking for a change, we negotiated a job-share arrangement for the Project Manager role on a $120 million project. I worked three days a week in Leighton’s first job-shared PM role.” The naysayers said it couldn’t be done but they were proved wrong.

Following the birth of her second child, Jen again took on a part-time (three day) Project Manager role. “It was extremely rare in the industry. But just because it’s wasn’t traditionally done didn’t mean it couldn’t.”

Day to Day Construction Activities
The day to day activities for a Civil Construction Manager provides the opportunity to see the business from a holistic vantage point. A broad view of the business. “We are presently involved in a range of large and diverse civil projects located across Victoria, and we’re working alongside a wide variety of clients. But on the whole my experience and construction expertise are used in the development of my team – there are numerous and varied informal opportunities to mentor and train.”

The nuts and bolts of the day to day activities of a Construction Manager encompasses resourcing and developing the construction team, commercial oversight, strategic planning and managing client relationships. Jen says, “It’s actually more about people and less about construction.”

It’s Your Life: Request Flexibility
Like many working mothers, Jen works full time in her Construction Manager role at Civilex, balancing her other roles as partner and mum of a young family by requesting flexible work arrangements. “My advice to anyone seeking flexibility is to be upfront with what you need and want. And that advice is not limited to just females. So many men ask “how did you get that flexibility?” My response: just ask. I think men too should take on this approach and make their working arrangements properly fit them.”

Values Underpin Everything We Do
Civilex’s company values – Safety, Respect, Wellbeing, Relationships, Culture and Innovation – play an integral role in shaping the company and its employee culture. Values assist Civilex in realising its vision of being the preferred civil construction partner for our clients and being the benchmark for how others are measured. As a Construction Manager, Jen says, “Values are everything. Our values are how we operate and engage in our projects and with people.”

Best Advice
Jen’s advice to women wanting to make a start or continue their career in the civil construction and engineering industry without burnout is simple: “You can do it. You can have meaningful and more senior roles – with flexibility – because I’ve done it!” Jen values the opportunity to network with other women within the industry. She says actively seeking out women in positions of leadership to talk to and garner advice or mentorship from evokes a sense of inspiration and is vital to success. In fact, Collette Burke has been inspiring her for over a decade, as a real life and local example of how women can succeed in the industry.

Civilex too values the importance of that network and wants to cultivate it further. As such Civilex has joined the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) this year, an association Jen is absolutely thrilled about.

On the Horizon
NAWIC is an Australian not for profit organisation formed in 1995 whose mission is to champion and empower women in construction-related industries to reach their full potential. The association offers members an opportunity to expand personal and business networks, maintain awareness of industry developments, improve skills and knowledge, and make a contribution to other women in the construction industry.

The NAWIC association is a positive step forward for women working at Civilex currently and into the future. The benefits are enormous. “Firstly, there’s a huge amount of support and encouragement for women in our business with plenty of networking events to attend. Secondly, becoming a member and attending NAWIC functions with our male colleagues will help better educate and inform the great men we work alongside the real challenges women face in our industry.”

And this hopefully brings about more open conversations and actions within the workplace and within our teams about more women coming into the engineering and construction profession and happily remaining.

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Oh What A Feeling Toyota!

After 54 years of continuous operation and the production of more than 3.4 million cars, last year Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) shut down its Australian manufacturing plant in Altona. Since then the site has undergone a huge facelift transforming the manufacturing facility into a new Centre of Excellence. This new centre will provide business management consulting incorporating a testing facility complete with track, skid-pans, Belgian blocks and more. Civilex is excited to have been contracted by Toyota Motor Company Australia to deliver the new testing track facility.

Toyota’s Legacy
From opening its doors in 1963 Toyota produced 3,451,115 vehicles in Australia (specifically in Victoria), and more than 1.3 million of these were exported to the Middle East — a figure significantly greater than both Ford and Holden. Toyota’s production plant was initially located in Port Melbourne until December 1994 when it migrated to the Altona site.

In an industry article published last year by Which Car, former Toyota Australia President Dave Buttner said, “The Centre of Excellence will include a world-class training facility and other commercial initiatives that will enhance the company’s business and the community.” The facility will not be a half-cooked attempt but will offer banked tracks, ripple tracks, Belgian blocks, and skid pans with the longest stretch being one kilometer. He went on to say, “It’s not a race track, it’s not a driver training track. It’s really an evaluation track. We want to make sure that the Centre of Excellence is the foremost training facility for our employees.”

Civilex Creates Toyota’s Test Track
Civilex previously posted the major contract win for the Toyota Test Track project in October 2017. The project involved the civil works associated with the construction of Toyota’s Product Knowledge Centre Driving Course, located in Altona.

Now with the finish line clearly in sight, we can see this is certainly not a “half-cooked attempt”. The unique contract requirements include a porcelain tile road (120mx16m) with a 1mm level tolerance per tile. Additional specifications include construction of a wet area road made of a standard flexible pavement (requiring all rocks properly placed with no lateral joins in the pavements); a hydraulic watering system installed below; and construction of two dry creek beds.

However, one of the most unique aspects of this project is the construction of pavements with an 18-degree incline to allow testing of 4WD vehicles at steep grades.

As the Civilex project nears completion, we look forward to sharing the finished product with you here soon. But in the interim and as a way to celebrate and reward the Project Team’s ongoing work, the Civilex BBQ Truck made a visit to the Toyota Test Track site recently delivering sausages in bread, hamburgers and salad, and marinated chicken drumsticks. And although it was a gloomy, grey day the BBQ was enjoyed by all followed by a special toolbox session led by Civilex HSEQ Manager Michael Spiteri. Afterward an iconic “Oh what a feeling Toyota” style team jump in the air!

Civilex BBQ Truck
As a side note to the civil works taking place out at Toyota Altona, the Civilex BBQ Truck is the perfect vehicle bringing people and food together socially. The 2017 purchased and custom-built Chevrolet truck is designed to deliver BBQ lunches at Civilex project sites and provides an opportunity for our team to come together to enjoy on-site lunches together. Civilex employee TJ says, “The former red Chevy body was stripped down and works began with a new heart and driveline, new shoes and a custom body.” It’s a complete winner and eye-stopper when up close.

The Civilex BBQ Truck will make an appearance at more Civilex project sites and assist at community and charity events.

Earlier this year, the Civilex BBQ Truck journeyed down the Great Ocean Road all the way to the coastal township of Lorne and hosted a project BBQ at the Allen Reservoir.

We expect the Civilex BBQ truck to be kept busy at site lunches as well as lending a hand and assisting out in local community and charity initiatives in the near future. Stay tuned for further developments.

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Join Our Team

We’re hiring! Civilex is seeking to fill three roles – Senior Estimator, Estimator and Project Nominated Authority (Works Inspector).

If you want to work in a dynamic civil construction team based at our new Spotswood head office then apply now.

Please email a cover letter and your CV clearly communicating the role you are applying for to our Human Resources team.

E: humanresources@civilexvic.com.au

Good luck!

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RAAF Base Project Complete

Civilex was engaged by Laing O’Rourke in September 2016 to deliver the major contract for the construction of the Air5428 Pilot Training System Facilities Project. Working within a fully secured Federal Defence site had significant implications on the project’s complexity, but last week it was all smiles and selfies celebrating the final handover. To mark the formal completion and handover of the newly constructed East Sale RAAF Base Pilot Training Facility, Civilex Directors Andrew Fairbairn and Ray Dando, Business Development Manager Ben Virtue, and Project Engineer Ibrahim Demiri joined Flight Lieutenant, Air Combat Officer and Base Aviation Safety Officer David Strauss on a tour of the completed site.

It’s a project wrap at East Sale RAAF Base. L-R: Andrew Fairbairn, Flight Lieutenant David Strauss, Ibrahim Demiri, Ray Dando, and Ben Virtue.

In January this year, we posted an update of the RAAF Base project which provided an overview of the nearly completed works and overall scope of the project.

One of the key components of the project was the construction of the airfield concrete pavement which included a complex testing regime involving stringent concrete testing levels, placement methods, and finishing details. As part of the pouring procedure, planning and close monitoring of wind speed, humidity and temperature were regularly undertaken. Weather forecast conditions were assessed daily to allow the team to call production on and off as required.

The complex internal site traffic management was another special feature of the project. In a recent Civilex web article, Ibrahim Demiri described his engineering journey from Site Engineer to Project Engineer. In the article, Ibrahim told of the exposure and unparalleled experience the RAAF Base project provided him – including the immense planning and coordination of securing local subcontractors with experience working within the base and procuring more than 30 pieces of heavy machinery.

Civilex’s completed project works – delivered on time and on budget despite the complex nature of the project.

We are delighted to announce the official completion of the East Sale RAAF PTF project. Civilex is proud to have successfully delivered this project on time and on budget, despite very complex community and stakeholder interfaces, very complex project management, service relocation and environmental risk management, as well as complex consultant team coordination and management, and subcontractor involvement.

Managing Contractor Laing O’Rourke was extremely satisfied with Civilex’s management and delivery of the project, joining senior management and project personnel on a tour of the new training facility earlier this week. The completed facility will provide aviation training to the next generation of RAAF pilots and beyond. Civilex Project Engineer Ibrahim Demiri enjoyed the tour of the new pilot training facilities including maintenance hangars, lecture theatres, and innovative simulator technology. Ibrahim said, “seeing the simulators incorporating 14 projectors with curved glass was a definite highlight.”

The greatest highlight for Civilex has been in developing a close and trusted relationship with the Defence Force. We look forward to our paths crossing again.

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Estimating Comes To Life

The Civilex Estimating team took some time away from their desks at Head Office last Friday to inspect progress made at Civilex’s portion of the Level Crossing Removal Authority project. Civilex is undertaking civil infrastructure work in and around the crossing removals between Caulfield Road to Dandenong Road – abbreviated to CD9. And on Friday it was Civilex Estimator Aaron Illangakoon’s opportunity to see his hard work come to life. Aaron ran the successful Civilex tender for the civil works being delivered under CPB and was able to see and experience the realisation of his drawings, rates, quantities, and specifications.

Estimating team with Project Manager Nick Loucaides at Murrumbeena crossing site. L-R: Branden Dickman, Nick Loucaides, Aaron Illangakoon, Eric Lai.

What is CD9?
As part of the Level Crossing Removal Project, nine level crossings are being removed before the end of 2018. Level crossings already removed include:
• Corrigan Road, Noble Park
• Heatherton Road, Noble Park
• Chandler Road, Noble Park.

Level crossings removals still in progress include:
• Grange Road, Carnegie
• Koornang Road, Carnegie
• Murrumbeena Road, Murrumbeena
• Poath Road, Hughesdale
• Clayton Road, Clayton
• Centre Road, Clayton.

The Civilex Estimating team visited three of the five Civilex sites: Murrumbeena, Carnegie and Noble Park. The boom gates at Corrigan Road in Noble Park have been removed and the new elevated rail line at Noble Park Station is now operational.

The Caulfield to Dandenong project is expected to be completed by late 2018.

Civilex Undertakes Infrastructure Works
With the whole section of rail elevated from Caulfield to Dandenong, works saw ground level platforms demolished and replaced with new car parks built underneath the elevated rail structures. Civilex, contracted under CPB, undertook earthworks and hard landscaping involving bluestone paving, precast concrete seats, electrical works for car park street lighting, as well as signage an line marking.

Civilex Estimator and CD9 tender lead Aaron Illangakoon said, “It was great to see the project come to life from the plans we made during tendering. Being out on site during the occupation works gives you another perspective on how much things need to work logistically.” Given the short time frame, Aaron said he was very impressed with the progress the Project team had made.

Solving Peak Congestion On The Busiest Rail Corridor
Prior to their removal, the boom gates at Noble Park’s Corrigan Road level crossing had been down for up to 73 minutes during weekday peak hours from 7-9am. A media update published by the Level Crossing Removal Authority (LXRA) reported the ongoing delays and subsequent frustration to thousands of motorists regularly using the road.

The Caulfield to Dandenong project includes rebuilding five new stations at Carnegie, Murrumbeena, Hughesdale, Clayton and Noble Park. The use of elevated rail to remove the crossings is decongesting traffic and opening up 22.5 hectares of open space which will be transformed into parklands.

The innovative plan centres on three sections of modern elevated rail creating 225,000 square metres – the equivalent of 11 MCGs – of open space for new parks, playgrounds, sporting facilities, car parking and a range of other uses chosen by local communities.

This modern design built over the existing rail line will also spare passengers and drivers years of disruption during construction with the majority of work completed with trains and roads running normally.

The elevated modern looking Carnegie Station at Koornang Road.

To follow the progress of the Level Crossing Removal across the rail network click here.

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Civilex Joins The Willy Lit Fest Family

Civilex is delighted to sponsor the Williamstown Literary Festival on its special 15-year milestone. As a business located in Melbourne’s west, we are committed to supporting programs that promote and enhance our vibrant community. This year our sponsorship will help deliver a rich and entertaining program to locals and visitors to our community over the weekend of 16 and 17 June.

Civilex proudly supports a number of community events and programs in the west. This weekend will see the Williamstown Town Hall and Library once again transformed into an engaging central hub for the literary festival, attracting a celebration of arts and culture for all ages. The program includes panels, interviews, author talks, workshops for children, teenagers and adults, readings and storytelling from all genres. The Willy Lit Fest weekend in Williamstown promises to again be a resounding success!

Head to the Willy Lit Fest website for the weekend’s program, guest speakers, authors, and writers delivering an engaging line up of events. The program is extensive so grab a cuppa, take a look at what’s on offer and book your tickets now.

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Australia’s Best Infrastructure Project

Victoria’s $670M Ravenhall Prison Project was recently named Australia’s Best Infrastructure Project at the Infrastructure Partnerships Australia’s National Infrastructure Awards. These awards are convened by Infrastructure Partnerships Australia each year and recognise excellence in public administration and business across major projects. The Project of the Year is the most prestigious of the Awards.

An Infrastructure Partnerships Australia media release states:
“The Ravenhall Prison Project fundamentally transforms the way that support is provided to people in the justice system in Victoria.”

Civilex congratulates all those who were part of contributing to the transformation of Victoria’s justice system.

Civilex Project Involvement under John Holland

Civilex completed full site preparation for the state-of-the-art correctional facility with a 260,000m2 footprint. Works included large-scale bulk earthworks, pavements, drainage, combined services trenching, and structural concrete.

As Head Civil Contractor on site, Civilex’s infrastructure works area extended across the full footprint of the project requiring Civilex to work with and alongside all trades, coordinating and staging works to provide continual access to all involved. The works required preparation of more than 30 building benches in a complex staged sequence to allow all contractors to commence works and achieve critical path.

Complex Project Management

Working within a fully secured Department of Justice site had significant implications on the complexity of the project including stringent site access arrangements, prison environment restrictions, an extensive onboarding process for all personnel, and probity of the site. The complexity of the approval process involved numerous stakeholders and multiple approval layers in the client consortium. Through attentive project management, Civilex remained ahead of the program throughout the build.

Due to the scope involving more than 60 pieces of heavy earthworks equipment and significant preparation works including crane pads, piling pads, and building benches, the large-scale work required complex staging and coordination and saw activities being undertaken by over 80 different trades on site simultaneously.

Overall Project Information

The overall project was delivered under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) and was managed by GEO Group under contract to the Victorian Government. The GEO Consortium (John Holland, Honeywell and Capella Capital) was awarded the contract in September 2014 to design, build, finance and manage Ravenhall Prison. GEO is also partnering with the Kangan Institute, YMCA, and Melbourne City Mission to offer a range of rehabilitation and reintegration programs that will help prepare prisoners for a positive and productive life upon release.

The Ravenhall Prison Project is a stellar example of the evolution of the PPP model in Australia and shows what can be achieved when the public and private sectors collaborate to achieve good outcomes. Civilex is proud to have delivered the civil works component of the project under John Holland.

The Minister for Corrections Gayle Tierney officially opened Victoria’s 15th prison – the Ravenhall Correctional Centre in October 2017.

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Civil Infrastructure Journey at Melbourne Airport

Next time you’re waiting to catch a plane or farewell a friend take a moment to appreciate the infrastructure improvements and ongoing works currently shaping Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport. Civilex is proud to have contributed significantly to the myriad of developments at the airport over the last five years. Although the project interfaces of some are more public than others, all projects completed and currently underway at Tullamarine are working towards improving Melbourne’s primary airport and the second busiest in Australia.

If you’re traveling by private jet then you’ll soon experience Melbourne’s new state-of-the-art private jet base. But then again with approximately 25 million domestic passengers and 10 million international passengers using Tullamarine Airport as their hub, you may be more likely to be using the new multilevel car parks, dynamic signage, and forecourt improvements.

Civilex is proud to have delivered and continue to deliver first-class projects at Melbourne Airport, and values the strong relationship we have created and nurtured with our client. Below is an overview of the completed civil works that date from 2014 until today where Civilex is currently working on airport infrastructure improvements.

Airport Services Tunnel

One of the less publicly noticeable projects that Civilex was awarded in 2014 by CPB (formerly Leighton Contractors) – and arguably one of its most challenging – was the construction of a 324m long underground services tunnel at Melbourne Airport. The majority of civil tasks required were considered both high risk and complex requiring the installation of a cut and cover underground tunnel, five access and egress points, and temporary shoring including the installation of shotcrete protection walls to ensure all services remained operational during the construction of the new tunnel.

The significant achievements of the project included Civilex management of all temporary works design and undertaking all concrete works using internal resources. Based on the high performance of the Airport Services Tunnel Works, Civilex was awarded additional packages within the Airport.

MLS Ground Works

In 2015 following the successful completion of the Melbourne Airport Services Tunnel Project CPB (formerly Leighton Contractors) awarded Civilex the MLS Ground Works contract. This project formed part of the Multi-level Car Park Structure Project for the new Tiger Terminal and included the construction of a bus terminal located on the ground floor of the MLS building.

The overall scope of works involved the design and construction of ground level civil pavements and landscaping works. These works were delivered on time and under budget which is noteworthy considering the significant challenges of confined working areas without clear site access, services clashes that restricted staging and production, working below an already complete structure which prevented operation of some plant and equipment, and a variety of unknown ground conditions including the existing uncontrolled blinding layer put in place for the building construction.

Melbourne Jet Base (MAP)

Due to Melbourne’s lack of a private jet base at a standard equal to other major cities around the world, Civilex was awarded a major contract from Hutchinson Builders in late 2016 to construct a new purpose-built jet hangar and prestige passenger terminal with associated infrastructure located within the Melbourne Aviation Precinct (MAP) site.

The project comprised of building a purpose-built private jet hangar with capacity for 17 private jets, a display hangar for a vintage DC3 aircraft, a prestige passenger terminal, customs and security facilities, a hangar support office and storage space, and a basement car park. Stay tuned for project completion article posted here soon.

Level 2 Valet Parking

In May 2017 Civilex was engaged by DCWC to upgrade the Valet Parking facilities at Melbourne Airport. The purpose of this upgrade was to improve traffic flow and the quality of the existing Premium Valet Car Parks. These upgrades were achieved through Civilex demolishing existing infrastructure, constructing new kerbs and islands, installing new boom gates with complex Damagepix vehicle inspection systems, a new epoxy coating, line marking and signage, fencing works and construction of new valet offices for Virgin and MelAir passengers. These upgrades were achieved with very complex project management and subcontractor involvement.

T4 Premium Car Park Works

At the same time as the Level 2 Valet Parking Upgrade project, Civilex was engaged by DCWC to upgrade the T4 Car Park to create a Nested Premium Car Park within Level 1 to T4. Special features of this project included 4,500m2 of concrete grinding and epoxy works and construction of new boom gate lane. These works were undertaken in a live traffic environment.

PAFO Forecourt

A significantly high-level public interface project is the Melbourne Airport Parking and Forecourt Optimisation (PAFO) Project Ground Floor and Forecourt Works. Civilex was engaged by DCWC (on behalf of APAM) to undertake works to improve the management of passengers arriving and departing from the Melbourne Airport Forecourt area. The project also included an upgrade to the rental car area on the ground floor of the multi-level carpark to improve the flow of rental cars and vehicles entering the carpark.

Special features included the construction of a carwash on the ground floor carpark, installation of vehicle inspection systems on eight boom gate exits, 40,000m2 of asphalt re-sheeting with complex staging and stakeholder engagement, and the construction of a forecourt canopy structure. All aspects of this project involved a high level of public interface.

Dynamic Signage

It was identified that through the use of digital lane allocation screens the Forecourt and Departures Drive arrangement at Melbourne Airport could be modified to better use existing infrastructure and more efficiently disperse traffic during peak times.

Civilex was engaged by DCWC (on behalf of APAM) to develop, install and commission two variable message boards mounted on new gantry signs to support digital lane allocation for G2 and G3, changing two existing static signs within the lower Forecourt on Arrival Drive, removing an existing sign on Departure Drive, and line marking alterations at key points to facilitate logical traffic movements.

Also included in the project scope was coordination with existing APAM systems and compliance with APAM standards, provision of active ICT network equipment to signage controllers through the client’s nominated supplier and coordination with APAM for display requirements. Additional requirements also included the installation of new line markings compliant and in accordance with the new layout/design.

Value Stay Car Park

In February 2018, as part of a variation to the PAFO Ground Works and Forecourt Project, Civilex was engaged by DCWC (on behalf of APAM) to upgrade and extend the Melbourne Airport Value Stay Car Park.

This project is presently being undertaken and involves the construction of four boom gate systems to partition the carpark into three separate areas, installing 130m of underground electrical and communications services, permanent fencing works to segregate existing parking areas, installation of three CCTV poles, concrete demolition to create new entrances and exits, removal of existing line marking and installing a new line marking layout, installing 150m of underground sewer and water pipes – including live connections, and installing a new modular toilet block for UBER (including pump and holding tanks).

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Civilex Graduates: Diversity is the Key

Will commenced with Civilex as an undergraduate and progressed into the Graduate Program in January 2018. Since then, he’s been on location in the surfside township of Lorne gaining exposure and hands-on experience on the Allen Reservoir Upgrade Project engaged by Barwon Water. I sat down with Will at the Civilex Spotswood head office over coffee and chatted about the key benefit and range of skills he’s garnered through the Civilex Graduate Program.

Will lives in the outer suburbs of Geelong and attended Deakin Waurn Ponds studying a Bachelor of Civil Engineering. The Allen Reservoir Project, located in Lorne, was the perfect project to kick start Will’s Graduate Program due to the close proximity from his home. The 186 million litre reservoir, built in 1958, is Lorne’s sole water source of drinking water and is located just 3km north-west of the Lorne township in the midst of undulating bushland.

I asked Will what he has enjoyed most about being in the Graduate Program to date and his response is similar to many of our other Civilex Graduates’ responses:

Will enjoying the coffee at Civilex head office in Spotswood.

The one key benefit Will mentions is the Graduate Program’s diversity where one day Will could be procuring suppliers and the next, be on the ground with a GPS and a bottle of spray paint in hand. Diversity is the key.

The Allen Reservoir Upgrade Project works are coming to completion, and Will finds himself in another environment – head office. He shares, “It’s so nice to have access to a coffee machine!” I have to agree, but coffee aside, Will reflects that the soft skills he has been able to develop in the Graduate Program – leadership, people skills and communication – has greatly increased his overall confidence and ability to communicate effectively to a wide range of people involved in civil construction.

On-site, Will has created and communicated toolbox sessions to project teams and workers and are often given the task of liaising with various suppliers and contractors to fill particular requirements of the project at hand. Will tells me, “I’ve really enjoyed stepping beyond my comfort zone and trying new things.”

Will has a couple of weeks to continue enjoying the quality of coffee on offer at Civilex’s new Spotswood head office before he heads out to his next project: Project One Western Roads Upgrade where he will continue to appreciate the diversity of work while developing and honing the soft skills and engineering experience to grow, develop and succeed with Civilex in the civil construction industry.

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Civilex Increases Fleet

Civilex has recently increased its fleet with the purchase of four new multipurpose trucks. The new acquisitions, add to the already Civilex owned 105 items of plant, include two new Isuzu NLR 45-150 Auto Tipper Trucks and two new Trans Tank International Aquapath Slide-In Water Tank Systems.

Initially, these trucks have been assigned to our civil construction work currently underway on the Level Crossing Removal Project: Caulfield to Dandenong – CD9 Murrumbeena and CD9 Carnegie but will be used across all other projects in the future.

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