Flexing Our Community Muscle in the West
From the outset, Civilex’s core business has always been in the civil construction space. Our company name alone gives that much away. But what may not be so evident from our name is the value we place on giving back to our local community in the west. Civilex partners and deliberately engages with a number of local community organisations in the west to help make a difference in a variety of ways. At its cultural heart, Civilex attracts and engages in purposeful pursuits. And while civil engineering may be its core business, the Civilex leadership team and employees are actively participating and contributing to our civil society.
Civilex has carefully crafted its Corporate Community Program over time to align with its core values. From initially supporting local and grassroots sporting clubs, we now also sponsor and partner with a wide variety of organisations and causes, predominantly located in Melbourne’s west. Some of these organisations, charities, and foundations are tireless in their commitment and effort at making long-lasting, positive change in everyday people’s lives and wellbeing. And this complements our commitment to making a difference where we can: creating awareness, improving social capital and bridging the gap between the haves and the have-nots.
Our Corporate Community Program challenges our community to step up both collectively and as individuals; to be more socially aware and responsible by giving back to diverse local communities. And in turn, giving back enhances our work through building team morale and collaboration outside of the head office, and allows employees to make lasting contributions to others.
Human Resources Manager Olivia Bartolo wholeheartedly embraces the corporate social responsibility model and encourages and challenges our employees to use their current skill-sets – and develop new competencies – outside of their often demanding and busy working roles. Knowing is one thing; taking action is another. Olivia says, “Through this model, we hope our employees embrace opportunities to leverage their skills and experience in other ways and to fully participate in programs that give them the chance to do something truly extraordinary and fulfilling.”
Civilex continues creating opportunities for employee involvement in a number of key community programs in the west. These opportunities include supporting Hobsons Bay Community Fund deliver their community programs and a Foundation Partnership with the Western Bulldogs with an opportunity for our employees to volunteer.
Some of the Civilex team pictured with our friend Mayor Angela Altair at the Hobsons Bay Community Foundation business lunch.
Hobsons Bay Community Fund (HBCF)
HBCF is a perpetual philanthropic fund established to benefit and strengthen the Hobsons Bay community for today and future generations. The Fund’s aim is to grow to $1 million and provide support to the local community in the form of community initiatives and organisations. Arts, sport, welfare, housing, food, education, recreation, health, disability and the environment are factors impacting all age groups within the municipality.
This year partners and sponsors such as Civilex helped raise almost $29,520 at the 2018 Budget Car & Truck Rental Charity Day that saw 105 keen (and not-so-keen) golfers take part in a fun golfing day. This money will benefit the wide range of community organisations that receive grants from the Community Fund. It was also the first time a perpetual trophy was awarded to the winning team: Steve Bracks, Kelvyn Lavelle, David Huggins and David Parsons. Two women’s teams entered this year, so if you’re keen to sponsor for a perpetual women’s trophy next year get in touch with the organisers.
Civilex Marketing Manager Lisa Cole gets a photo with Steve Bracks former Premier of the State and part of the winning team
Beautiful day out on the golf course
Civilex also attended the HBCF annual business networking lunch recently. The networking event was a wonderful opportunity to share the Civilex team spirit and gain greater awareness about the amazing initiatives that the HBCF supports and helps deliver to the community.
Snippets of feedback from our staff who attended the lunch:
“It is a really great initiative that Civilex supports the local community by hosting a table and also the generous donation made by Civilex. The lunch was a great networking event which allows voices to be heard and brings a greater understanding of the programs that are supported by the HBCF. Was great that we were able to represent the company and share a laugh at the same time.”
“A fun afternoon and a great initiative. Thanks for having me.”
“Thank you for the invite – a lovely luncheon with great people. It was an honour to be part of the generosity of Civilex’s donation.”
“I am amazed at how many people can put their time aside to be part of and support such a great charity. I was personally touched by the grant offered to the girl who suffered from anxiety and depression at such a young age, and how she was able to help others going through similar circumstances. It makes me so proud to be associated with a community that gives so much back.”
From Hobsons Bay to Western Bulldogs, Civilex continues to support its community of the west.
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Improving Cyclist Safety
The health and economic benefits of cycling are well known and ditching the car to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle and to be kinder to the environment has been heavily promoted across all media channels for some time.
In 2011 a former Lord Mayor stated that Melbourne was becoming “a true cycling city”. But more recently a 2017 article by Crikey published mode share of cycling to work percentages: 40% in Amsterdam, 34% in Utrecht, 24% in Eindhoven, 22% in Rotterdam, and 14% in The Hague. It’s just 2% in Melbourne and even less in Sydney. We still have a long way to go in reaching those international levels of cycling uptake – particularly Amsterdam where cycling occupies a cultural niche for the Dutch.
If there was one way to make cycling a more attractive option for Melburnians, it would be in building better cycling infrastructure. And that’s where Civilex comes in.
Civilex subcontracted to John Holland, is currently undertaking civil infrastructure works on Moray Street, South Melbourne as part of the Metro Tunnel Works. The Herald Sun reported that these works are changing the rules of road engagement for cyclists in the high traffic area. Drivers must now give way to pedestrians and cyclists on newly raised zebra crossings and cycling paths. The new roundabout at Moray and Dorcas Streets is open, while the Coventry Street roundabout will open in the next couple of weeks.
Civilex Project Manager Joe Hickey says, “We’re proud to be involved in this infrastructure upgrade providing cyclists, pedestrians and motorists an alternative route to St Kilda Road during the construction of the new Anzac Station. This is an incredibly busy intersection and the high traffic management required on site makes this a particularly complex project.” As previously published, Civilex is proud to have been involved in transforming Melbourne’s rail network alongside its contract companies.
Road infrastructure upgrades include wider lanes, new rumble strips, and better line markings. A special feature of the new bike paths are the wombat crossings – raised pedestrian crossings where the road ramps up to meet the level of crossing rather than the footpath typically dropping down to meet the road surface via a pram crossing. The key benefit of wombat crossings is that they limit the speed of vehicles using the crossing, thereby providing additional pedestrian – and now cyclists’ – safety.
Find out more about the Victorian State Government’s Metro Rail Tunnel Project and the building of the new Anzac Station.
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Line Up With Us
We’re lining up to help support Jeans For Genes a not for profit organisation with an important cause.
In Australia, 1 in 20 kids faces a birth defect or genetic disease.
We want to help.
And you can jump on board too and assist in speeding up the search for treatments and cures. Every dollar raised on the Civilex-Conset-Grampians fundraising page goes directly to the Children’s Medical Research Institute.
You can also help right now by donating on our page.
Thank you for your generosity.
An Undergraduate Journey: Where Civil Engineering Theory Meets Reality
In an era where converting years of academic theory into real life skills is priceless, the part an undergraduate placement plays in respect to the millennial student’s university journey is immeasurable. Today – thanks to the range of placement programs on offer – it’s highly unlikely a university student will graduate without any industry experience and exposure under their belt. In the civil engineering industry, Civilex continues its strong relationship with Swinburne University and offers undergraduate placements to civil engineering students, providing endless opportunities to weave their knowledge into gold.
Swinburne University undergraduates Lee Tesaluna and Alex Schmidt have recently completed an undergraduate placement with Civilex. Lee started as a placement student but chose to take time away from his university degree to work full-time with Civilex. He plans to return to Swinburne for his final year in 2019. Meanwhile, Alex has completed his tertiary study and is pleased to have secured a Graduate Engineering role at Civilex starting next year. Unfortunately, we can’t chat with Alex as he’s currently traversing around Europe, aiming to visit as many music festivals as possible!
Lee has just returned from a family visit to New York and caught up with me recently to chat all things civil engineering, and his experience as a Civilex Undergraduate Site Engineer.
Civilex Undergraduate Civil Engineering Students Alex Schmidt (left) and Lee Tesaluna (right)
Lee’s Journey to Civil Engineering
Lee comes from a family of nurses: his parents are both nurses, and so too are his aunts and uncles on his father’s and mother’s sides of the family. Then there’s Occupational Therapist in the mix too. Growing up, Lee rebelled against this entrenched family discipline and wanted to do something different. Whatever that might be. Inspiration came on a family vacation to New York when he visited another aunt and uncle – who were not nurses – but rather trained as civil engineers working in Toronto.
Lee was just 11 years old when his worldview changed. It came from a simple question – what do you do? “I recall them telling me the work we do makes things happen.” And Lee was hooked. Lee shares that the engineering side of the family spoke about building a bridge in the Philippines. “It wasn’t a special bridge or anything, but they told me it had all the names of the senior engineers inscribed on a plaque attached to that bridge. 11-year old me thought that was just so cool.” In fact, it had such a profound impact that Lee decided he wanted to do that too. And so, the drive to become a civil engineer was born.
That drive was cemented when in Year 10 Lee really stepped out of the medical arena that most of his family were so familiar in. “I took my work experience at a nursing home and quickly realised the nursing profession was definitely not for me,” Lee says. He was just okay at maths, better at physics, but terrible at chemistry. “I was really rebelling against anything nursing related…including chemistry!”
Lee is currently one year away from graduating with a Bachelor in Engineering (Civil) (Honours) at Swinburne University. He has taken time away from the books to work full time with Civilex after successfully being offered an undergraduate placement with the company and will return to Swinburne in 2019 to complete his degree.
His favourite subjects at university centre around report writing, group projects, and presentations. He also prefers management subjects such as Engineering Management, Civil Engineering Project, and Cost Engineering over the typical theory-heavy subjects such as Structural Mechanics. “Although it’s absolutely necessary to know all the theory, I really prefer talking and working with people and the soft skills that go into the behind-the-scenes tasks of a civil engineer.”
Lee has no regrets about his choice to study civil engineering at Swinburne. “It’s a great program at Swinburne and I feel both supported and challenged. They even helped connect me with Civilex in the first place when I was researching various placement opportunities. Swinburne places a high priority on gaining industry experience, not just good grades.” While Lee is working at Civilex he is also gaining credits towards his civil engineering degree even though he’s not studying during this time.
Lee has relished working at Civilex for the simple fact that it helped put theory into practice. “Once I started with Civilex, I was so relieved. I realised everything I’d studied – all that theory – could be applied outside the classroom; it’s just ten times more detailed in real working life.”
Student Placement Life
Lee had just completed his third year at Swinburne in November 2017 when he commenced his placement at Civilex. Since Lee lives in the western suburbs, he thought the head office location (then in Hoppers Crossing and now in Spotswood) was most convenient. “[It] was absolutely nerve-wracking because it was the first proper adult kind of thing I’d ever applied for! This was what I’d been preparing for my entire life so getting this placement was huge.”
Lee’s undergraduate placement experience has been a positive and beneficial one that has helped shape his future career plans. “I learn so much every day at Civilex. I’m really lucky as I’ve been placed on a variety of projects – one was three hours away from home up in Sale, which has really given me a new perspective of how to manage myself in regards to working, commuting and looking after myself.”
Currently, Lee is on-site at Melbourne Airport involved in Civilex’s Dynamic Signage project. His previous civil engineering placement experience had been at the East Sale RAAF Defence Base and the early works at the HMAS Cerberus Navy Base located at Cribb Point. Both defence projects have involved a stringent security clearance. “I really wanted industry experience and I’ve got it at Civilex. I’m at a point where all my preparation at secondary school and uni has finally come together.”,
As part of his placement journey, Lee was shown the ropes – projects, systems, people – by Project Engineer Ibrahim Demiri, our Global Day of the Engineer and one of Civilex’s young up-and-coming engineers. “Ibrahim busted my pre-conceived notion that I’d be mentored by older, more senior engineers. Here at Civilex, that’s not always the case – many of my mentors are closer to my age and it’s great working alongside my peer group.”
Lee has also been exposed to the more senior management at Civilex including Operations Manager Matt Gurney. “I remember my initial interview with Matt, well it was more of a conversation really, where he asked me why I was interested in doing my placement with Civilex and what particular projects I would like to gain exposure to.” It must have been a good chat because that afternoon Lee was offered a placement.
Lee at Times Square in New York
Lee singing his heart out at a school concert
Lee and his proud parents
In Lee’s Spare Time
Lee is big into music and always has been. He started playing music at around 10 years of age and continues to play the keyboard, guitar, drums and he also sings. “Anytime I’m feeling bored, I’ll just pick up my guitar and start strumming. I have written some of my own songs, but I prefer singing covers.”
Lee may have first discovered his passion for civil engineering in New York all those years ago, but it was on his most recent family visit there – when he was asked to perform at his grandparents 50th wedding anniversary – that he let his love of music steal everyone’s hearts. Lee performed two songs for his grandparents: the French song La Vie En Rose and Frank Sinatra’s Fly Me to the Moon.
Lee – you are a star!
We wish Lee all the very best for both his future with Civilex and completing his civil engineering degree at Swinburne University. And we look forward to catching up with Civilex’s current music festival wanderer Alex upon his return.
Swinburne University is holding its annual Open Day on Sunday 29 July 10am-4pm in Hawthorn. And don’t miss out on Swinburne’s Open Day Highlights by taking the interactive challenge – Are You Engineering Material?
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Giving Back: Becoming Adapters with Western Bulldogs Community Foundation
A previous post this year reported that Civilex had joined the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation (WBCF) – a partnership we are extremely proud of. The WBCF is a committed and engaged community services arm fulfilling a very important role: providing deserving people living in Melbourne’s west and the western region of Victoria with the tools to succeed in life.
As employees of a Western Bulldogs Community Foundation Partner, Civilex staff are encouraged to become “Adaptors” and to volunteer their time and expertise in various WBCF programs on offer. Volunteer Adapters have the privilege of being hands-on in helping deliver an enriching and engaging experience for program participants. Civilex staff recently undertook an induction night to officially become “Adaptors”.
Civilex employees L-R: Debbie Pillay, Lorraine Reilly, Sam Scacco, Lisa Cole, Victoria Eresjo become Round 2 Adapters!
Dimity Gannon, Community Health and Wellbeing Manager, says, “The Adapters induction night is a great opportunity to learn more about each of the three streams of the Community Foundation: Health and Wellbeing, Social Inclusion and Diversity and Youth Leadership. The first half of the night covers the necessary administrative aspects, while the second half is an interactive session allowing Adaptors to experience what each of the streams involves.”
Civilex staff found the interactive session both fun and engaging, interspersed with moments of stepping outside personal comfort zones and realising what so many in our community deal with and manage on a daily basis. It was an opportunity for the community to come together and witness where true strength lies.
The well-known Sons of the West men’s 10-week health and wellbeing program is celebrating its fifth year, and its popularity and success will see Daughters of the West launched next week.
It’s all blue, red and white at Doggies HQ
Thumbs up at the end of the induction – Civilex staff with current Adapters and program leaders
Daughters of the West programs launch next week
The Leadership Project is a 6-month intensive social leadership program for young people aged 14 – 16 years residing in Victoria’s West. The program supports these emerging leaders and provides them opportunities to build their capacities in leadership, social responsibility, teamwork, communication, goal setting, resilience and civic engagement. Participants have the opportunity to contribute to their local community whilst growing and developing as future leaders. Then there’s attending youth camps too. There’s something for everyone.
Towards the end of the induction evening, current Adapters shared their journey with the group. The heart-warming and reoccurring theme in all of their stories as volunteers was being able to witness the life-affirming impact the programs had on community participants – both young and old. Youth Leadership and Development Manager Adam Moedt says, “The programs are truly life-changing for many program participants and until you meet these people and experience the programs first-hand it is really hard to believe.” Volunteering in the programs provides an opportunity to be part of that positive community impact.
Civilex wishes to thank the Western Bulldogs Football Club and its Community Foundation for the positive change they stand for in our community in the west. If the mid-year Round 2 Adaptors Induction evening was anything to go by, you’ll have a whole team of Civilex Adapters in no time.
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Plant Life at Civilex
As a leading Melbourne-based civil contractor, Civilex invests heavily in its plant. The obvious plant being the usual large, yellow machines used at our various civil project site locations. But what you may not realise also, is that Civilex has invested in the green plant variety at its new head office.
The early 2018 head office relocation to Spotswood has provided Civilex employees a workspace others would dream about. Modern yes; natural light-filled yes; open spaces yes; inviting kitchen with breakfast in the pantry yes; a game of pool or table tennis during the workday hell yeah! But if there is one element in particular that leaves our employees more content and our visitor’s turning green with envy it’s our plant life.
Beginning with our amazing garden wall, located at reception, is a green kaleidoscope of plants with attention-grabbing red flowers. At first glance, the garden wall appears fake. The overhead lights reflecting on the leaves and perfectly formed red flowers make it seem all too perfect to be real. But as visitors wait out at reception admiring the greenery, the misconception is soon corrected by the quiet sound of trickling water.
Managing Director Joe Bartolo was hands-on with the design and layout of Civilex’s new head office saying, “At Civilex we place great importance on the wellbeing of our employees and provide them with a working environment that helps to reduce stress, increase productivity, and we wanted to create an office environment that our employees actually enjoy being in.” Being in and around nature can help achieve these outcomes – so not only does Civilex have an impressive live garden wall at reception but plants have been intentionally placed throughout the office including open office and meeting spaces and kitchen and outdoor areas that provide a unique green office environment. Joe adds, “I personally benefit from the design and I believe our employees do too.” Joe is not alone in his views that having plants in a working environment contributes to overall wellbeing.
According to Plant Life Balance website the science behind plants and people is simple: they are a great mix. It seems the greatest benefits of having real plants surrounding us in our homes and our workplaces is twofold: better air quality and wellbeing. Plants remove toxins in the air we breathe as well as create feelings of relaxation, inspiration and positivity. That’s a win-win for employees and employers.
An RMIT study also found that there is little benefit in having just the one plant. The greatest benefit is having many plants of all shapes and sizes. The study found that as the more plants are added or a complete garden “look” is created in the home or workspace, wellbeing increases significantly.
Our office staff couldn’t agree more. Read what some of them say about the benefits they experience through Civilex investing in plant life at the new Spotswood head office:
Victoria Eresjo, Office Administrator: “Our garden wall really stops traffic. Visitors stand there in awe of it when they first enter our head office; some grab their smartphones and take photos of it! I’m lucky as I get to appreciate the garden wall throughout the day and it makes me feel happy.”
Civilex head office – a welcoming entrance of plant life.
Nate Rampant Project Manager: “I’m out on site for a lot of the time, but when I’m back at head office it’s such a nice environment to come back to and be in. Eating lunch in the kitchen area with everyone else and the extensive plant life around certainly benefits how I feel. I’m sure it’s the same for my colleagues.”
Civilex kitchen area is open, light-filled and green with plant life.
Lorraine Reilly Human Resources Coordinator: “I just love the greenery in our HR office as well as across the entire head office space. It makes feel happy and calm especially in my busy day-to-day role in human resources.”
Civilex’s plant wall looks too good to be real, until the sound of trickling water starts.
Kate McAdam Accounts Payable Officer: “Due to the nature of my role in finance, I’m facing a screen for much of my working day but having the green plants surrounding me actually makes me feel good. It’s a lovely sight to have so much greenery in an open-plan office.”
Civilex open plan office space is filled with greenery.
At Civilex we not only love what we do, we love where we work.
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Civilex Acquires Grampians Excavations
Melbourne-based Civilex acquires Stawell-based Grampians Excavations. The recent acquisition provides opportunities for both businesses to work within the civil construction industry together in both Melbourne and regional Victoria.
As a company, Grampians Excavations closely aligns with Civilex’s diverse range of infrastructure clients in both the private and government sectors and further complements the myriad of Civilex projects presently delivered. The acquisition provides Civilex immediate access to its large fleet of specialist excavation and earthmoving equipment, and – most importantly – some of the most experienced regional operators in the industry.
Grampians Excavations Founders Jim and Karen Leithhead established the business in the 1990s in Stawell. The acquisition will see the Leithhead family retain 25% shareholding and Jim will continue to manage the day to day business. The Civilex Directors – Joe Bartolo, Ray Dando, and Andrew Fairbairn – alongside Jim, will focus on expanding the company in preparedness for Victoria’s largest infrastructure boom.
Following the acquisition, Grampians Excavations and Soil Yard will be known as Grampians Excavations Pty Ltd, and the change in name will be reflected in a new company logo. Despite these changes, Civilex Managing Director Joe Bartolo says the core business and project operations of Grampians Excavations will remain unchanged.
To read more about the acquisition click on the press release – PR_Grampians Excavations.
Last week, Civilex Directors and key staff traveled to Stawell to meet current Grampians Excavations employees in person and to answer any questions they may have had in regards to the recent acquisition.
Civilex would like to thank the Grampians Excavations team for a great turnout at both the Melbourne and Stawell meetups and we look forward to working together in the near future.
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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.
Special jackets for Five Year Club inductees
Director Ray Dando handing out the Five Year Club certificate
Five Years of Service certificate
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 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.”
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.
Jen’s family – first day at school
Jen with her kids at Erskine Falls, Lorne
Fun day at Civilex Values Launch Day
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.
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.
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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.
Murrumbeena crossing works
Carnegie crossing works
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.
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.
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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Civilex Graduates Tour William Adams CAT
Civilex Engineering Graduates recently visited the impressive William Adams CAT (Caterpillar) Centre in Clayton with Civilex Construction Manager Jen Robertson and enjoyed a tour of the facility where plant is both built and maintained. Graduates also saw the Service Solutions Centre where information from each plant in the field is communicated to the Centre in real time, recording the location of the machinery, gauging any mechanical problems, and monitoring fuel consumption.
Civilex Engineering Graduates tour William Adams CAT L-R: front – Jen Robertson, Sanjay Sarup, Andrew Fuller; back – Mark O’Sullivan, Matthew Martin, Will Jeffers, Patrick Kemp
The (extra!) fun part of the tour was when Graduates each took their turn at operating a Roller, a Posi-Track and a 20-tonne Excavator. Interestingly, this particular excavator was fitted with new technology making it semi-automated and giving it the ability to track productivity.
Sanjay, Civilex Engineering Graduate
“The tour was great. It provided a good insight into William Adams’ relationship with Civilex and all the Graduates appreciated the high-value experience.”
The highlight! Engineering Graduate Sanjay in the driver’s seat of this 20-tonne excavator.
Adjusting the seat before setting off with the roller.
Construction Manager Jen Robertson enjoys the drive too.
The Civilex Graduate’s tour included:
– An overview of the CAT facility and its growing capabilities including fluid testing, mechanical repairs and body works
– A demonstration and hands-on testing of plant – Excavator, Roller and Posi-Track
– An insight into the data analysis Caterpillar provides to Civilex for productivity tracking – fuel usage, maintenance, faults and operating characteristics/metrics
– A tour around the facility to understand the range of plant and equipment available for use on-site
– An overview of the technology CAT is implementing new machinery and how it can be used on Civilex sites (primarily automation and GPS).
Our thanks to William Adams CAT for providing our Graduates with the opportunity to better understand and experience the world of construction plant and equipment and witness the rapidly expanding future of technology in our industry.
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Contributing to the transformation of Melbourne’s Rail Network
The $10.9B Metro Tunnel Project is one of the largest public infrastructure projects ever undertaken in Australia. The project will build a new tunnel beneath the city centre, freeing up much-needed space in the City Loop, and allowing more trains to run in and out of the city. Civilex is proud of its ongoing contribution in transforming Melbourne’s rail network.
Upon completion in 2026 the Metro Tunnel Project will have created space for more trains to travel more often across Melbourne’s rail network, increasing capacity for an additional 39,000 passengers during peak periods, reducing road congestion and paving the way for future expansions of Melbourne’s public transport network.
The twin-9km rail tunnels are being built between South Kensington and South Yarra stations, and include the construction of five new underground stations. Once complete, the tunnels will connect the Pakenham and Cranbourne lines with the Sunbury line and will allow commuters to the CBD to bypass both Flinders Street station and the City Loop.
The new infrastructure will be an international-standard metro system boosting the capacity of the existing rail network, and supporting Melbourne’s population growth to 6 million in 2031, and 7.8 million in 2051.
Last year Civilex was awarded the High Capacity Metro Trains Project (HCMT) by Downer Group. Civilex is proud to continue their work in this arena, contracted to John Holland to complete Metro Tunnel Early Works.
Here’s an overview of Civilex’s civil construction involvement on the Metro Tunnel Project to date:
High Capacity Metro Train (HCMT) Maintenance Facility
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews congratulates Civilex Director Andrew Fairbairn on being awarded the Pakenham Depot Project contract.
The contract for the construction of the new High Capacity Metro Train facility was awarded to Civilex by the Downer Group in April 2017. The Civilex team delivered bulk-earthworks, internal roads and drainage on the 118-hectare parcel of land in Pakenham East. The completed depot includes maintenance facilities, a stabling yard and a driver-training simulator for the new fleet of high-capacity metro trains that will transform Melbourne’s public transport system. Read more from Downer’s latest news.
Special features of the project:
• Complex project management
• Road over rail grade separated crossing
• Design management including consultancy
• Coordination special subgrade remediation
• Excavation greater than 5m in cut.
Transmission Tower Civil Works
Civilex first joined the colossal Metro Tunnel project in May 2017. Engaged by John Holland to deliver the Transmission Tower Civil Works – as part of the Early Works Package – Civilex completed the relocation of four transmission towers within a tight timeframe to enable the main tunnelling works to commence on the Western Tunnel entrance. Civilex delivered the works in a safe, effective and efficient manner, meeting John Holland’s main objectives and operational constraints, including providing third-party rail supervision.
Special features of the project:
• Complex staging and methodology for a soil nail wall
• Working within a live traffic environment
• Managing five sites concurrently
• Tight timeframe.
CBD North Civil Works
In November 2017 Civilex were again engaged by John Holland to continue works on the Early Works Package, delivering the CBD North Civil Works. This package includes road and signal modifications in Latrobe Street (King to Exhibition Streets), Victoria Street (Leicester to Latrobe Streets) and the Elizabeth-Therry Street intersection, in a live traffic environment.
Special features of the project:
• Live traffic environment in Melbourne’s CBD
• Tight timeframe
• Complex traffic, pedestrian and cyclist management
• Complex and extensive staging.
Moray Street Bicycle Lanes
Civilex is thrilled to have been recently awarded the subcontract by John Holland to improve cyclist safety as part of the Metro Tunnel Early Works. The project involves upgrading Moray Street from South Melbourne to the CBD. The new bike path will provide cyclists with a safe and reliable alternative north-south route during the Metro Tunnel works taking place on St Kilda Road.
Civilex looks forward to improving cyclist safety by adding bike lanes along Moray Street, including increased kerb and channel, pavement and line marking works.
Civilex is proud to be contributing to the civil construction works that are transforming Melbourne’s rail network.
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Networking with Roads Australia
Civilex attended Roads Australia’s Industry Luncheon on Friday 18 May and caught up with luncheon guest speaker Victorian Treasurer Tim Pallas who has recently handed down the 2018/19 State budget. It was an opportunity to network with Roads Australia CEO Ian Webb and President David Stuart-Watt, other industry members and corporate guests and hear first-hand Tim Pallas’ overview of the infrastructure commitments and general health of the economy.
L-R: Ian Webb Roads Australia Chairman, David Stuart-Watt Roads Australia President, Tim Pallas MP Treasurer of Victoria, Joe Bartolo Civilex Managing Director
Roads Australia is a not-for-profit, non-political industry association that presents views of stakeholders to the government and the community. Its members are drawn from all corners of the Australian road sector who all hold a strong commitment to the wellbeing of Australia’s road transport network.
With 130 members, Roads Australia is a perfect forum for members to come together as equals and work towards practical outcomes and policy solutions that deliver safe, cost-efficient roads and road transport solutions for Australians.
Civilex is proud to continue its membership with Roads Australia and support the ongoing commitment to Australia’s road transport network.
Photos courtesy of Roads Australia website.
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Acknowledging Safety at Civilex
The health, safety and wellbeing of our employees, subcontractors and the communities in which we work are integral to the way we operate. It’s a core value of the Civilex business. Safety above all else drives the behaviours that underpin our positive safety culture of “no harm”. We live by our mantra – safe today to enjoy tomorrow – reinforcing the importance of safety, ensuring all employees return home safe and sound to their family and friends. At Civilex, we encourage employees to speak about safety, identify unsafe practices or actions, inspire others to do the right thing and maintain safe working environments.
We are proud to acknowledge the outstanding safety actions of Civilex team members and share the choices made and extra steps taken that ultimately resulted in positive outcomes. Civilex would like to share two recent examples of proactive choices made by site staff to intervene and uphold company values and highlight the importance of being safe all of the time.
For their initiative and leadership, the Civilex Excellence in Safety Award for April 2018 is awarded to Darren Quinlan and Trent Delbridge.
Civilex General Supervisor – Toyota Test Track Project
Darren displayed safety leadership, which is also reflective of the project team’s safety culture. Darren identified an at-risk safety scenario when a transport company attempted to unload a large stack of steel reinforcement without suitable safety controls in place. The methodology proposed by the delivery driver presented a fall from height risk (unavailability of fall protection or handrails, dunnage separating the stack to apply lifting equipment from a safe level or pre-slung sections). As a result, Darren requested the delivery driver to return to the site when appropriate safety controls were in place.
L-R: Darren Quinlan, Joe Glenn, Stuart Smart, Billy Dando, Alex Schmidt
Civilex Labourer – Melbourne Airport Parking and Forecourt Optimisation Project
Trent exhibited several Civilex company values when he intervened as two subcontracted site workers prepared to climb on top of a ute tray. The workers’ intent was to use the tray as a platform to complete an installation of a steel 2.5m long overhead height bar. Trent advised that this method presented a fall from height risk and that there was more suitable equipment available to complete the task in the compound. He then assisted them to complete their works safely.
L-R: Scott Macur and Trent Delbridge
Coincidentally the common theme in both safety incidents was a fall from height risk, and it was through the initiatives of Darren and Trent that prevented potential risk of serious injury.
We commend and acknowledge our high safety achievers for their contributions and recognise that the challenge always is to raise the bar in regards to safety at all times.
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Civilex Partners with Western Bulldogs Community Foundation
The Western Bulldogs may be most known as an Aussie Rules football team, but beyond the field, membership numbers and gate receipts there is a committed and engaged community services arm fulfilling on a very important community mission. The Western Bulldogs Community Foundation (WBCF) seeks to fulfil on its mission to provide people living in our backyard, the western suburbs of Melbourne and the western region of Victoria, with the tools to succeed in life.
The WBCF mission: to be the community where people are at their best.
The Community Foundation Background
SpiritWest Foundation Limited, trading as the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation, was incorporated on 27 September 2012. Since the date of incorporation until 2015 the Foundation remained dormant. It is registered as a PBI (Public Benevolent Institution) with DGR (Deductible Gifts Recipient) status and has its own Board. The year ended 31 October 2016 was the first full year in which the Foundation ran its own programs.
The Foundation works in partnership with government, corporate and community agencies to deliver services and programs that endeavour to improve social capital and the quality of life of people living in the Melbourne’s west through to regional western Victoria.
The Western Bulldogs have a long and proud history as the Community Club of the AFL; delivering community programs with real outcomes.
The Club is central to the community of Victoria’s west, and the Foundation plays a pivotal role in helping people reach their full potential and ensuring they’re accepted regardless of their gender, race or faith. The key is their celebration of diversity as an integral part of a united and cohesive community with the aim to engage with multicultural, indigenous and all abilities communities via innovative programs.
The Foundation works closely with the Club and utilises the Bulldogs’ brand as a platform to engage a wide range of participants and positively influence their lives. The Foundation delivers innovative and engaging community services for individuals and families who live and work in the west.
Like the players that take to the field, the west community is courageous, strong and resilient, but for some, support is needed to guide and empower them in finding the strength they need to face some of life’s challenges and to overcome fear and doubt. There is more detailed information available on the Foundation website.
Civilex Becomes a Foundation Partner
On Tuesday 8 May, the WBCF held its second annual Foundation dinner at Metropolis Events, Southbank. Alongside key guests Bob Murphy, recently elected Community Foundation board member, Easton Wood, Lin Jong, Josh Dunkley and Jason Johannisen, the WBCF dinner showcased the positive impact their programs are having in the western region of Victoria.
Civilex attended the Foundation dinner where our Foundation partnership was officially announced to the audience and in front of Civilex attendees Joe Bartolo, Olivia Bartolo, Lisa Cole, Matthew Gurney, Lorraine Reilly, Ben Gargiulo, Jen Robertson, TJ Delbridge, Simon Gennari and Ken Poutakidis.
Through this community partnership, Civilex looks forward to working closely and collaboratively with the WBCF which will help support programs assisting people living in the West of Melbourne and Victoria as well as meeting our corporate social responsibility goals. All funds received by the Foundation are spent on dedicated community programs that make a real difference to people’s lives.
The WBCF works with the community for the community and delivers services to over 5,000 people across four streams annually. The community programs currently offered by the Foundation include:
Health and Wellbeing
Diversity and Social Inclusion
Youth Leadership and Development, and
Details about each stream can be found on the WBCF website.
And if there was anything that inspired us on the night it was the celebration of community and borrowing directly from the Western Bulldogs themselves – where real strength lives!
I came away from the dinner really impressed with the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation and the Club itself. It really does care about its community and engaging with its community at all levels. The Youth Leadership program would have to be my favourite program because when I was younger I was involved in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Leadership Program and believe I wouldn’t be where I am today without the skills this type of program instilled in me.
Another remarkable attribute is the engagement with new migrants. This is such an integral part of today’s society being a multicultural nation and any type of integration for migrants into our country and society should be commended.
It was a great night. The inspirational story from Phil was very uplifting. For Phil to share his journey with us all last night and how his will to survive and still contribute to his community which happened due to the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation program is a real credit to all the people involved.
Jen, Construction Manager
The highlights for me attending the Western Bulldogs Foundation Dinner was:
1. Bob Murphy
2. Bob Murphy
3. Bob Murphy!!!
No but really…it was inspiring to see how the Community Foundation is devoted to supporting the community in the west. I loved how both the organisers and the participants from each area of the various programs spoke and shared their work. It gave us all a well-rounded view of what each program aims to achieve and the actual impact it was making. I loved how the Leadership Program focuses on social leadership and that participants go on to develop their own social fundraising and support programs.
Photo credit Liz Vagg
Thank you WBCF for a wonderful night and welcoming Civilex as a Foundation Partner in 2018.
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Shining Our Light – Working and Walking for Road Safety
Civilex Improves Road Safety
Civilex continues its civil construction work on improving road infrastructure on one of Victoria’s most dangerous rural roads – an 11km stretch of the Melbourne-Lancefield Road just outside of Romsey. According to VicRoads’ research people driving on country roads are four times more likely to be killed than those in metropolitan areas, with nearly half of all road deaths in Victoria occurring on 100 and 110km/h roads. Almost a quarter of serious injuries occur on high-speed rural roads, mainly due to drivers driving off the road or hitting other vehicles head-on.
Transport Accident Commission Lead Director of Road Safety Samantha Cockfield says, “We all have a role to play to reach our goal of zero deaths or serious injuries on our roads and while we are making progress with Towards Zero there is still a long way to go.” Civilex is proud to be working in partnership on Towards Zero initiative in making the Melbourne-Lancefield Road safer while also taking time to join the RTSSV organisation and community who are committed to walking 5km and to shine a light on road safety.
Although the construction works are about 70km north of the community walk at Albert Park Lake, Civilex was proud to sponsor The Road Trauma Support Services Victoria (RTSSV) 2018 campaign Shine A Light on Road Safety. The fifth annual Shine a Light on Road Safety campaign achieved extraordinary visibility and reached over a million Victorians.
RTSSV Community Walk
On Sunday 6 May hundreds of people walked together around Albert Park to honour those impacted by road trauma and advocate for road safety. Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Doug Fryer led the walk. He was joined by Minister Luke Donnellan and members of Victoria Police, the Transport Accident Commission, VicRoads, SES, MFB, Ambulance Victoria and CFA and hundreds of Victorians whose lives have been changed by road trauma.
“It was wonderful to see so many people connecting and supporting each other through this terrific community-led campaign,” said CEO of RTSSV Cameron Sinclair.
The Shine a Light on Road Safety campaign was part of National Road Safety Week 30 April – 6 May 2018 and during the week landmarks across Australia were illuminated in yellow for road safety.
On Friday 4 May Victorian motorists turned on their headlights a simple, free and highly visible gesture to remember those impacted by road trauma and show commitment to road safety. The campaign reached well over a million Victorians thanks to the support of the Victorian Government, TAC, Victoria Police, VicRoads, community groups and corporate Australia.
The Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan said, “Road trauma has a devastating effect on thousands of Victorians every year and nobody deserves to lose their life on our roads.” RTSSV was founded in 1994 by a small group of people whose lives had been directly impacted by road trauma. RTSSV was first set up to provide specialist services and support to people suffering due to injury or loss of a loved one on Victoria’s roads. Today, the not-for-profit RTSSV organisation has grown to offer state-wide counselling, support and education services to any Victorian affected by road trauma.
This year Civilex Victoria not only sponsored RTSSV’s annual campaign – “Turn your headlights on Friday 4 May” and a community walk on Sunday 6 May – but Civilex staff participated in it.
Walk Participant’s Experience
Civilex employees and their family and friends participated in the walk on Sunday. Here’s why the Civilex employees joined in:
Sam, a Leading Hand at Civilex, participated in the community walk with his wife Helen. “We did the walk as victims of road trauma and as survivors of a near-fatal collision back in 2006. I personally know the effects of PTSD as I was the driver the day of our accident. To walk away from that accident with minor injuries – along with my family – was a relief. Today it was great to come out and support others impacted by road trauma and be part of Team Civilex sponsoring the campaign. We enjoyed the day as well as the company of those supporting the event.”
Civilex Marketing and Communications Manager Lisa attended the walk at Albert Park Lake with her family. “I attended the Shine A Light on Road Safety community walk with my husband and teenage daughters because I currently have two Learner drivers just beginning their journey of being behind the wheel, and already they have experienced incidents on the road that have made them feel uncomfortable and nervous. I want them to know that it’s okay to drive slower than what a speed limit sign says and not take unnecessary risks on the roads for their own safety as well as the safety of other drivers.”
Michael works at Civilex in the role as OH&S Coordinator and joined the walk with his family. “Whether it’s a family member, a friend or a work colleague, most of us have felt the unfortunate impact of road trauma. My four family members and I took part in the RTSSV Shine A Light on Road Safety community walk because anything that helps positively influence driver attitudes and behaviours will reduce the number of people affected by road tragedies.”
David is a Surveyor at Civilex who participated in the walk with his wife and two children. “Earlier this year my primary schoolmate from home in Fiji lost his life while driving in the early hours. Police said Mr Singh was a victim of fatigue while driving long hours at night – he didn’t have enough rest which led to a head-on collision with a bus.
The biggest lesson I learnt from his accident is that road safety is everyone’s responsibility. We have to recognise the signs of fatigue, and when in doubt we should always safely pull over and take a 15-minute power nap.”
Victoria works as the Office Administrator at Civilex and brought her partner along to the walk. “When I first decided to join the walk, it was to help raise awareness around road safety – mostly for my colleagues working alongside roads.
But after considering the cause further it suddenly became much more personal to me. 20 years ago my mother came into my room with tears in her eyes and told me my friend Daniel had been involved in a car accident. He had lost control of his vehicle on an icy country road after enjoying a couple of beers. With his best friend in the passenger seat, Daniel’s car skidded straight into a tree and both were killed. At Daniel’s funeral, his younger brother looked down into the grave, crying and shouting for his big brother to come back.
I don’t wish this pain on anyone. No one should have to lose a loved one and constantly be thinking: what if we did something different? What if they had waited 10 minutes for someone else to drive them? What if they hadn’t consumed those few mid-strength beers? Would his reactions have saved them? What if they had hurt someone else?
For me, alcohol and driving do not go together.”
The Shine A Light On Road Safety campaign is supported by the Victorian Government, the TAC, VicRoads and Victoria Police. More information about VicRoads Towards Zero Strategy and Plan.
If the content of this article causes you or someone you know any distress, please contact RTSSV direct on 1300 367 797 for free counselling and support.
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Civilex Supports National Road Safety Week
We’re supporting road safety and you can too!
This week (30 April – 6 May) is Road Safety Week and Civilex is supporting two campaigns and I hope you too can personally support and participate in them.
ROAD TRAUMA SUPPORT SERVICES VICTORIA (RTSSV)
Civilex staff are showing their support for the specialist services offered by Road Trauma Support Services Victoria RTSSV by turning on their headlights on Friday 4 May. This simple and highly visible gesture demonstrates our commitment to safe driving and commemorates those who have been impacted by road trauma.
RTSSV is a not-for-profit organisation working towards reducing the incidence and impact of road trauma, and Civilex is a proud sponsor of their Shine A Light on Road Safety campaign this year.
Since 1994, RTSSV has been committed to educating the community and raising public awareness about road trauma and how it affects people’s lives. The sole purpose of the Shine A Light on Road Safety campaign is to stop deaths and injuries on our roads.
RTSSV offers free and unlimited counselling, information and education to improve the attitudes and behaviours of road users and to support anyone impacted by road trauma.
Civilex Victoria is supporting RTSSV’s Shine A Light on Road Safety campaign through sponsorship. But there are many ways you too can become involved and support the work of the RTSSV and their partners TAC, Victorian Government, Victoria Police, and Magistrates’ Court of Victoria.
Key ways for you to get involved:
• Turn on your headlights on Friday 4 May
• Join the Community Walk at Albert Park Lake, Melbourne 11am Sunday 6 May (see map below)
• Appreciate the key icons illuminated in yellow from Monday 30 April to Sunday 6 May and take a photo and share it on social media!
• Join RTSSV at the Time for Remembering ceremony at Parliament House Melbourne on Sunday 18 November. This day coincides with the UN’s World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims
• Make a donation to RTSSV today (1300 367 797 | www.rtssv.org.au)
• Follow RTSSV on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter
• Become a member and help shape the future of RTSSV
• Volunteer with RTSSV; the foundation of the RTSSV organisation.
Please feel free to share this information with your family and friends and help shine a light on road trauma in our community.
RTSSV phone number – 1300 367 797
SAFER AUSTRALIAN ROADS AND HIGHWAYS (SARAH Group)
Civilex Victoria is also proudly supporting the 2018 campaign Drive So Others Survive. This year’s particular focus is on protecting vulnerable road workers, first responders and emergency services personnel.
The SARAH Group commenced five years ago and is supported by the Governor General and Prime Minister, as well as all State and Territory Governments, Local Governments, and road safety and community organisations. SARAH campaigns for changes to policy and legislation to ensure that lives are not lost in preventable and clearly foreseeable situations. SARAH lobbies for a stronger commitment to renewing poor infrastructure and appeals to drivers to take responsibility for their actions on our roads and highways.
SARAH was formed following the tragic and avoidable death of 23-year old Sarah Frazer. Sarah Frazer was killed instantly when a truck side-swiped her broken down car and the tow-truck loading her car in the emergency lane of a highway. Sarah was on her way to commence university.
Civilex held a special toolbox session on site at the Melbourne-Lancefield Road Project site to discuss road safety and the dangers of working in a live traffic environment. The Melbourne-Lancefield Road Project involves the construction of overtaking lanes and road widening works. It forms part of VicRoads’ Towards Zero Road Safety Strategy and Plan 2016-2020 plan – a plan focussed on the prevention of run-off-road and head-on collisions along 20 of Victoria’s most high-risk regional roads.
We encourage all our employees to take the SARAH PLEDGE to Drive So Others Survive. You too can demonstrate your support by taking the SARAH pledge and by displaying yellow ribbons or yellow ribbon stickers on your car.
Follow the SARAH campaign on social media – Facebook , Instagram , or Twitter
We encourage our staff and members of the public to support these community organisations by sharing this information with family and friends and following these organisations across social media. Together we can contribute to raising the profile and awareness of the valuable services RTSSV and the SARAH Group do within our communities that help reduce road deaths and trauma.
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Civilex Turns 10 – A Decade of Growth
The office was a-buzz as party elves prepared to celebrate Civilex Victoria’s 10th birthday. Giant helium balloons and hanging party lights and pinatas, a Civilex-themed photo booth and retro popcorn stand, and enormous letters spelling out CIVILEX lit up the entire outdoor area and transformed our new head office in Spotswood into a carnival-like atmosphere! Caterers soon followed – busily working away in the boardroom preparing a smorgasbord of oysters, dips, cheeses and meats, and putting champagne and beer on ice. Not forgetting the incredible concrete-looking Besser Block birthday cake!
Additional entertainment – a stand-up comedian – kept us all on our toes and chuckling, preceded by a league of Japanese drummers dressed in Civilex-branded hard hats and hi-vis vests. As the drummers beat away their impressive hum we welcomed in a new, energetic era and celebrated Civilex’s 10th birthday with a big bang and many, many laughs.
Civilex’s first decade has been a busy one: the company’s growth trajectory has been dynamic and upward; projects won have been diverse, and welcoming and onboarding new talent have been unstoppable. The future of the civil construction company is rosy with a focus on expansion through acquisitions, diversification and sustainable long-term growth.
The Civilex story is one of family-oriented beginnings starting in 2008 with a handful of employees, two excavators and a ute. Two years after Civilex commenced, Directors – Ray Dando and Andrew Fairbairn came on board with Joe Bartolo. They weren’t just the founding Directors, they were Civilex! Over the following year, Civilex took on seven employees increasing the company to a total of 10 and delivered projects that doubled its turnover. By 2013 Civilex had 50 staff members. Employee figures doubled again over the next year.
Fast forward to our 10th birthday today and the Civilex continues its upward employee and turnover growth trajectory but continues to stay close to its core: people. We hold firm to the belief that success is underpinned by our culture. It’s a culture that treats employees fairly and as family while investing in people, innovation, and technology so that skills are developed now and for future generations.
We are all extremely proud to have celebrated such a significant milestone: a decade of Civilex. From humble beginnings to all the people who have journeyed with Civilex and helped shape its family-oriented culture, to the future beat of Civilex – we wouldn’t change a thing!
Hip hip hooray for Civilex!
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Grand Opening Party event
“Oh What a Night!”
Civilex Victoria hosted its head office Grand Opening Party on Thursday 12 April with special guest Mayor Altair in attendance, along with numerous industry guests, staff and company representatives – all of whom have played a part in the exponential growth of Civilex. The event was an opportunity for guests to tour the new office space, network with diverse industry representatives, and of course enjoy the delicious grazing platters and refreshments.
We were honoured to have Hobsons Bay City Council Mayor Cr Angela Altair officially open our new head office in Spotswood, cutting the ribbon with Managing Director Joe Bartolo and Directors Ray Dando and Andrew Fairbairn.
Mayor Altair delivered an exceptionally engaging and entertaining speech, mentioning that after a personal tour with Managing Director Joe Bartolo she was so impressed with our new office space, she asked if there was a job vacancy!
Key features of Civilex’s new head office in Hall Street Spotswood include natural light-filled offices; collaborative areas to work both inside and out; a large welcoming kitchen and communal dining area designed to bring employees together; and a spacious foyer with a mesmerising floor to ceiling garden wall. Yes, they are real plants! The new space also accommodates social areas for staff to change up their day with a game of table tennis or pool. And our company values wall is a visual reminder that everything we do here at Civilex Victoria aligns with our core values: Safety, Respect, Wellbeing, Relationships, Culture, and Innovation.
It is likely the new office and its purpose designed spaces will continue to make a positive impression on visitors and guests due to its unique and carefully considered work environment. And our staff are in unison, delighted to be part of a company who put into practice and live by its company values.
A special thank you to all our guests for attending our Grand Opening Party and making the night a successful and memorable one for Civilex Victoria.
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Team Effort at Surf Coast Trek 2018
With a map, mobile, drink bottle, lunch and snacks packed, our five intrepid Civilex employees delved into one of Victoria’s most beautiful and remote parts to raise funds for worthy causes. We caught up with Civilex Office Administrator Victoria Eresjo post-40km 8-hour walk and asked what her highlights were participating in the Surf Coast Trek this year.
It’s really hard to pinpoint the best part because there were many highlights. Firstly, giving back. Helping raise funds for two worthy foundations – Kids Plus and Give Where You Live was absolutely satisfying. Hopefully, our participation will encourage other companies and their employees to do the same next year for an amazing cause that assists kids in having the same opportunities and ability to live a normal life. We are fortunate at Civilex to have a social calendar with a diverse range of social activities to get involved in.
Another highlight was the walk itself. Being out in the remote Victorian landscape was liberating. We are fortunate to have access to such a beautiful coastal region like this and it’s something all Victorians should be proud of protecting. The more we look after it and nurture our backyard the better it will be for future generations. Our kids will be able to walk through the same track as we did without having to stumble on litter and plastic bottles.
But really what I treasured the most was completing the trek with my work colleagues. Although we work in different departments and on diverse projects plus commencing work at Civilex at different times, the team camaraderie was felt and formed and I really enjoyed getting to know my Surf Coast Trek team better. There’s a lot to talk about over 40km!
Together we motivated, encouraged and stuck it out together for the entire eight hours. Aaron “The Secret Assassin” kept the pace together with “Guru” Scott, who did not let go of his walking stick for one moment. Matt Attard did such an amazing effort considering he was recovering from shin surgery and Ibrahim, a hiking rookie, also smashed the walk using his secret method: eating three bags of potato chips!
Now I can’t wait for the next Civilex trek scheduled at the end of November across Mount Feathertop.
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Civilex wins HMAS Cerberus Naval Training Base Upgrade – Early Works
Civilex is pleased to announce they have been successful in their tender to deliver the Early Works package for the HMAS Cerberus Upgrade at Cribb Point. Civilex will be engaged under subcontract to LendLease in the next few days. Having just completed the East Sale RAAF Base Pilot Training Facility, this win further builds on Civilex’s growing Defence Force experience and capability.
A major component of Civilex’s scope includes the temporary construction of roads and car parks which will accommodate the Main Works Package requirements. In addition to the temporary works, permanent works include the Intake Switching Station associated with the EMOS Workshop. Additional associated permanent works include drainage, earthworks, building pads, flexible and rigid pavement construction and landscaping.
Innovation played a major part in Civilex’s detailed submission and was demonstrated through alternative pavement design involving the use of high-strength geotextile. Civilex has extensive experience with this product following the completion of the Mt Gellibrand Windfarm Project. In addition to the value for money associated with the use of this product, the client was impressed with Civilex’s expertise in constructing high-strength geotextile pavements.
HMAS Cerberus is located approximately 75km south of Melbourne and is the principal training establishment for the Royal Australian Navy, supporting and providing training to nearly 1,000 cadets. The redevelopment will upgrade and refurbish the existing infrastructure and facilities on the Base, meeting current training needs and supporting future requirements. The Base will remain operational throughout the redevelopment works.
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We’re Across Social Media
It’s now easier than ever to keep up-to-date with Civilex news, developments and projects across our social media platforms. We have now included the platforms of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest to our communications stable of LinkedIn, Instagram and Vimeo.
Jump on and follow/like us! And remember to help us spread our messages by sharing our updates and posts on social media because as we all know sharing is caring!
Civilex Graduate Development Program, applications close 15 April
The Civilex Graduate Development Program is a unique and flexible 2-year industry program. Designed for Graduates to be exposed to a diverse range of unique opportunities while working with one of Victoria’s leading civil construction companies.
Graduates can fast track their 2-year program to suit their learning and pace. Gaining project experience with some of the most talented players in the civil construction industry, their mentors support and encourage graduates to challenge themselves and the way they think.
Graduates hone in on their social intelligence, polish their presentation, negotiation and problem-solving skills and extend their interpersonal attributes. They’re skills integral to the nature of the work graduates will soon be involved in on a daily basis.
At its core, the Civilex Graduate Development Program is real. It’s training leant on site, with hands-on experience that can’t be learnt from textbook alone.
Our graduates are exposed to:
• Stakeholder Management
• Financial Management
• Contract Management
• Leadership Skills
• Communication Skills
• Negotiation Skills.
Most importantly our Graduate Development Program allows Graduates to take control of their future. They have the ability to steer their career where they want it to go. And at their own pace.
Listen to what former graduate Matt Willis shares about his experience working with Civilex.
Opportunity is awaiting. Apply here
Applications close for our Graduate Development Program on 15 April.
Global Day Of The Engineer
Today, 4 April 2018, we’re celebrating Global Day of the Engineer.
A day to acknowledge and celebrate our 50 Civil Engineers!
We spoke with one of our up and coming Project Engineers Ibrahim Demiri who shares how his boyhood dreams are being realised within the civil construction industry at Civilex Victoria and what strengths are needed to succeed.
At Civilex Victoria we value our engineering staff and the service they deliver to our business and in improving infrastructure for society. At an engineer’s core is their expertise at problem solving and thinking. Their task: to design the built environment and manage the natural environment. Whether we realise it or not, theirs is a complex task requiring a number of key strengths and attributes.
Here are five key strengths and attributes we seek in our civil engineers:
Leadership. Our civil engineers are leaders who don’t balk at undertaking difficult assignments and will dig deep to find solutions.
Diversity. In our people and projects. Our diverse staff are our strength. Diverse project works including planning, designing, and constructing civil works in the field of highways, water and wastewater systems, tunnels, dams, buildings or bridges.
Innovative approaches. Our engineers are immersed in large-scale and complex projects: some to improve and maintain; others to create from scratch.
Thoroughness. Our civil engineers are detail-oriented people who deliver results due to their acute attention to detail and ability to see long term ideas and plans through to the end.
Positive outlook. Our company and its culture are built on a foundation of initiative where the only tether holding our civil engineers back is their own ambition.
And one of our up and coming Graduate-turned-Project Engineer is Ibrahim Demiri.
Ibrahim has worked at Civilex since March 2016. He arrived with qualifications and some experience: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) and junior estimating, quoting and programming experience within a work placement at another construction company. Growing up, Ibrahim was immersed in a world of maths all around him. His mother, an automotive engineer, shared her passion for engineering with her young son. Ibrahim says, “Mum made maths fun by creating games with numbers.” Ibrahim and his mum spent hours solving maths problems together…just for fun.
Fast track to today, grown up Ibrahim is visiting the Civilex head office located in Spotswood. But over the course of last 65 weeks he’s been living and working in Sale (4-hours from Melbourne) working on one of the most sophisticated new defence training facilities in the southern hemisphere. No more maths games; welcome to the amazing real world of civil engineering. Ibrahim realises his value and contribution to the project and shares with me what his mum used to tell him that has carried Ibrahim throughout his civil engineering journey: If you’re honest with maths, maths will always be honest with you. He adds that the same goes for people.
The RAAF Base project in Sale was a unique project requiring a high level of commitment from staff both personally and professionally. The management of such a project is complex from community and stakeholder interfaces to traffic management, project management, environmental risk management to sub-contractor involvement. But Ibrahim isn’t the kind of personality to shy away from a challenge or opportunity for growth. As a result of being open to the opportunities that have come his way, the exposure within the defence sector has enhanced his civil engineering skills, level of responsibility and personal development. “I’ve become much more independent since relocating and sharing a rental house with a few other engineers up in Sale.” He cites self-reliance, prioritising his time, and being more aware of looking after himself while setting out to work on this project as a 22-year old.
At the start of the project he was fourth in line – a junior engineer. One year later, now as Project Engineer, Ibrahim has taken advantage of the fast-tracked learning and mentoring opportunities that Civilex provides its junior engineers. “Being exposed to the requirements of a Pilot Training Facility project over this period of time has been an amazing experience for me, and one that is not readily available within the usual civil engineering jobs going around at graduate level. I feel pretty lucky.”
Asked what else he has enjoyed about working on the Sale project, Ibrahim says, “Perfection. A Federal Defence environment demands a high level of security, stringency and perfection.” Specific processes must be followed otherwise the infrastructure constructed will not be suitable for an airfield environment.
The thought of planning the movement of as many as 30 pieces of heavy machinery with project stakeholders is testament to this unique landmark project’s level of logistical complexity.
Ibrahim is an up and coming young civil engineer with a bright future with Civilex Victoria. Today we acknowledge his passion and commitment to his work, as well as acknowledging his mum who always attempted to impart her passion for engineering and make maths fun for her son on the Day of the Global Engineer.
Press Release – New Head Office for Civilex
Supporting Local Soccer at Grassroots
Civilex continues to be a proud sponsor of the Altona City Soccer Club for some time now, and this team of young soccer players basked in a weekend of fun playing in the Lightning Cup. It was a huge success with lots of smiles. Congratulations!
Graduate Expo Month
March is the month to unleash the Civilex Graduate Program
Our Graduate Development Program is a unique industry graduate program as it allows our graduates to steer their learning at their own pace. So much so that from the get-go graduates immerse themselves in live construction projects and gain mentorship with some of the most talented civil construction people in the industry PLUS our Graduate Program is flexible. How’s that? Our Graduates are able to fast-track the 2-year program at a pace that suits their learning – finish it on time or sooner! We call it: Your Program. Your Pace. Your Future. This could be your journey.
Civilex has participated in five Graduate Expos in the month of March:
• 9 March – The Big Meet at Crown Palladium
• 20 March – Civil Engineering Industry Night at RMIT City Campus
• 21 March – Experience and Employment Expo, Deakin University Burwood Campus
• 27 March – Experience and Employment Expo, Deakin University Geelong Waterfront Campus
• 27 March – Experience and Employment Expo, Deakin University Geelong Waun Ponds Campus
Thank you to our Human Resources and other select staff who have taken time out of their day to come down to the graduate expos and chat with graduates about the Civilex 2-year Civil Construction Graduate Development Program and other graduate opportunities within the company.
Applications for our 2019 Graduate Development Program close on Sunday 15 April 2018.
So, what are you waiting for? Click here to kick start your career within the civil construction industry.
Komatsu Shakes It Up with SmartConstruction
A special thank you to Komatsu President Mr Tetsuji (Ted) Ohashi for visiting Civilex’s new headquarters in Spotswood with Director Andrew Fairbairn on Friday 9 March and providing Civilex with the opportunity of learning more about Komatsu’s innovative concept #SMARTCONSTRUCTION technology and partnering with Komatsu to deliver innovative technology within the industry.
We look forward to continuing to build our long-term relationship with Komatsu and being the industry leader in adopting technological advances within the civil construction industry that promote greater productivity, accuracy and worksite safety. Stay tuned for the #SMARTCONSTRUCTION revolution!
Values Launch Event
Staff recently enjoyed a company lunch and Values Launch at Civilex’s new Head Office in Spotswood. Over 200 employees attended the launch on Friday 2 March, with Civilex Business Development Manager Ben Virtue hosting, joined on stage by various colleagues, Managing Director Joe Bartolo, and Directors Ray Dando and Andrew Fairbairn.
A special mention to the staff who courageously took to the stage and shared their history and experience with Civilex. The 10 extra spokespeople delivered their moving sentiments to a sea of orange hi-vis vests, and company-branded black caps. Many thanks to Joelle Fradd, Joffa, TJ Delbridge, Jen Robertson, Elika Schaumkel, George Markelis, Eric Lai, Nick Loucaides, Luke Gaunt, Matt Willis, Scott Macur, Aaron McArthur and Damien Gatt.
Understanding what the company values mean to each staff member was highlighted and reflected upon throughout the afternoon. As a team, we fully embrace and live by the six core values that support the Civilex and Conset vision, and shape and sustain the culture of which we proudly belong to.
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Civilex Allen Reservoir Dam Milestones achieved, visit by NEW Civilex BBQ Truck
Civilex always work hard to exceed client expectations, and after recently achieving two major project milestones the Allen Reservoir Project Team are certainly testament to this. Milestones achieved were:
1) Establishing access to the concrete works, and
2) Installing the outlet trench and removing the lower tier dewatering.
Both milestones are critical to the Allen Reservoir Project – their on-time completion mitigates a large portion of the project risk which was associated with groundwater inflow during excavation works. In particular, removal of the lower tier dewatering has rounded out the deepest excavation in what was expected to be the most challenging ground conditions on site.
Civilex are proud both milestones were completed on time, and to the highest safety standard.
After a challenging start, the Project Team welcomed the celebrations, and thoroughly enjoyed the new Civilex BBQ Truck’s inaugural visit! Well done to everyone involved!
RAAF Base East Sale, Pilot Training Facility nearing completion
Civilex is proud of their involvement in the East Sale RAAF Base Pilot Training Facility project. This benchmark project in the Greater Gippsland region was both dynamic and challenging, and the Civilex Project Team’s management of multiple stakeholders was fundamental to the project’s success. All works were undertaken within a live airfield, in a fully operational RAAF base. The Project Team’s exceptional communication skills, careful planning and organisation ensured all safety requirements were exceeded, in addition to the client’s expectations. Civilex congratulates the East Sale RAAF Base PTF Project Team in achieving the highest quality of finishes.
Civilex were engaged under subcontract to Laing O’Rourke to deliver the $30M civil pavement and service package for the East Sale RAAF Base PTF. Major components of Civilex’s scope included 26,630 square metres of airfield concrete; construction of a $1.8M AFFF management system; 39,000 square metres of asphalt airfield pavement; installation of five treatment tanks; contaminated groundwater management; construction of landside pavements; and access roads and drainage works.
As part of their scope of works Civilex were required to completed several deep excavations – with some up to seven metres below ground level. To maximise safety the Project Team conducted planning sessions with all workers involved in the construction and management of the high-risk excavation work. From a collective conversation with labourers, excavator drivers and foreman, it was decided that an interlocking sheet pile wall methodology was the safest and most structurally thorough methodology for the works.
The ground water contained PFAS contaminates and as such the water table also required careful monitoring and management during excavation. To achieve this, spears were used and water was pumped into 21 holding tanks, tested and transported to an Oakleigh treatment facility. This methodology proved very successful and was repeated for the installation of each of the five treatment tanks.
Concrete works also formed a major component of the scope, including the construction of a huge concrete airfield to house 28 aircraft. Prior to pouring the concrete, completion of drainage, water, fire, AGL lighting and footings were required, followed by a cement-treated prep layer involving detailed thickenings within a 5mm tolerance. Sealing was undertaken, followed by concrete works.
In the early stages of the project two concrete placement crews were working adjacent to one another, with a truck arriving to service each crew every 15 minutes. Careful planning of truck movements was crucial to ensure the on-ground crew remained safe, and the previously poured concrete was protected. A testing station was on site along with a full-time testing crew to ensure all quality requirements were achieved.
The East Sale RAAF Base Pilot Training Facility Project is yet another Civilex project completed on time, under budget, and exceeding safety standards.
Civilex kicks off 2018 with Osars.
Work to commence mid January on OSAR Western Package Project.
Civilex will commence Early Works mid January on Package 01 : Palmers and Dunning Roads. A Feature Survey, Service Identification and Geo Technical Investigation that will finalize the Design Documentation. With turning of soil in April 2018.
Former automotive workers, cadets, trainees, apprentices and local firms will share in work building and maintaining the revamped road network. The upgrades and ongoing maintenance will cut congestion on these key arterial roads, remove bottlenecks and provide more efficient freight routes to keep trucks off local roads.
OUTSTANDING TEAM PERFORMANCE 2017
In 2017, Civilex put in one of the most outstanding team performances seen for FOOTY COLOURS DAY. A second-year participant, Civilex raised our fundraising total from $550 in 2016 to a premiership winning $15,093 in 2017 – a phenomenal effort.
“The day was a big hit on our construction site in Pakenham and once we got the online page going, we really started to gain some momentum and everyone jumped on board! Thirty-six related businesses and individuals really got behind the cause and contributed to our fantastic overall result.”
We showed our true colours this year, raising enough money to provide young learners with access to smart technology to help them stay in touch with their school while they receive treatment for cancer.
Civilex look forward to going, bigger and better next year!
OSAR Western package, Netflow Consortium preferred supplier, Civilex is a key player
Barbara Cortese, the star of recent press conference with Premier Daniel Andrews, Minister for Industry & Employment Ben Carroll and Minister for Roads & Road Safety Luke Donnellan. Barbara shared her fantastic story in civil construction and discussed her further training & development through Civilex’s apprenticeship and trainee program.
For the OSAR Western package, the Netflow Consortium is the preferred supplier. Civilex will be a key player. The press conference and tour was held at Victoria Polytechnic, where more than 120 trainees, cadets and apprentices will be trained to work on the Western Roads Upgrade. Former automotive workers, cadets, trainees, apprentices and local firms will share in work building and maintaining the revamped road network.
The $1.8 billion project is one of the biggest-ever upgrades to Melbourne’s suburban road network and will deliver a combination of road widening, duplications and intersection upgrades to fix eight congested roads in Melbourne’s west over the next five years.
Civilex construction of final stages of MAP Jet Base
Civilex have commenced construction of the final stages of the aircraft apron pavements at the futuristic MAP Jet Base with concrete pavements continuing to be placed this month. There is a total of 20,000 square metres of aircraft pavements to construct with concrete depths of up to 480mm and over 6,000 cubic metres of specialized aircraft pavement concrete to be imported. Concreting works are due to be completed before the Christmas holidays. Australia’s first curfew-free purpose-built private jet will be a world-class facility.
Civilex awarded Berwick & Strathmore Railway Station Carpark Upgrade Projects
Civilex is proud to have secured the contract to significantly expand the capacity of both Railway station carparks. The projects will involve constructing new sealed commuter parking spaces that will improve accessibility and enhance safety through new lighting, CCTV and signage. Both projects are part of the Victorian Government’s $20 million commitment to fund provide up to 2100 new sealed car park spaces at 16 stations on railway lines experiencing high growth in passenger numbers.
Your moustache makes a difference
Trucker, regent, connoisseur or wisp – no matter the shape or style of your Mo this Movember, your face can inspire donations, conversations and real change. Men are facing a health crisis that isn’t being talked about. They are dying too young, before their time. The money raised goes towards funding for important research and to support projects aimed to tackle prostate cancer, testicular cancer, mental health and suicide prevention. Many Civilex staff members are taking action this Movember, by growing moustaches for men’s health. Go to https://moteam.co/civilex-modiggers to donate and support this great cause.
Civilex awarded Altona Toyota Product Knowledge Centre Project
Civilex had been awarded the Toyota Product Knowledge Centre Project. Which includes the construction of the PKC driving course, feature roads as well as all civil, excavation, drainage works, landscaping and wetlands. Toyota will also continue a presence at the Altona site by establishing a Centre of Excellence that will continue to provide innovation skills and manufacturing knowledge to local companies. This will be Toyota’s legacy to Melbourne’s west.
Civilex awarded Melbourne Airport Lane Allocation project
A project to design & construct digital lane allocation screens with variable message signs. It’s a significant project for Melbourne Airport, to assist with the management of vehicles arriving to the Airport. The use of the digital lane allocation technology will enable traffic demand to be spread across Departures Drive and the lower forecourt, to improve possible congestion during the peak times. It involves a complex stakeholder engagement process with works being carried out on the main entry roadway to the Melbourne Airport and provide flexibility to make other lane allocation changes to suit various construction phases over the next two year critical construction period.
Civilex awarded the Allen Reservoir Dam Safety Upgrade for Barwon Water
Barwon Water is Victoria’s largest regional urban water corporation providing world class water, recycled water and sewerage services. This major water infrastructure project marks a significant step for Civilex in this space. The works involve the major upgrade of the existing earthen dam, increasing the dam’s capacity by raising the dam crest and upgrading and significantly increasing the capacity of the existing concrete spill way, providing flood protection for the township of Lorne.
Civilex Pakenham HCMT Project Bulk Earthworks phase approaching completion.
Works progressing well on the High Capacity Metro Trains Project.
Civilex and The Gordon TAFE : Civil Construction Awareness Day 2017
Major civil contractor Civilex Victoria partnered with The Gordon TAFE who specialise in providing training in the civil and construction industries to bring awareness and insight to 50 local school students in the Western suburbs about the diverse career pathways in the civil construction sector.
On Thursday 27th July, ‘Civil Construction Awareness Day 2017’ provided students with an opportunity to hear the unique journeys of both the Managing Director of Civilex, Joe Bartolo and HSEQ Manager George Markelis, explaining how they worked their way into successful careers in the civil industry. The Gordon TAFE enabled the students to explore their training facilities and equipment while providing valuable information about the training options available such as apprenticeships in Civil Construction and traineeships. Students also heard from one of Civilex’s highly experienced civil leading hands, Luke Gaunt who explained a day in the life of a plant operator. We would like to express our gratitude to The Gordon TAFE and to Komastu for kindly providing Civilex with an excavator to support the students learning in these workshops.
Civilex Managing Director Joe said “Days like today are an important part of increasing awareness and employment in the Civil industry. There is a current skill shortage that will only worsen if we don’t promote the Civil industry and the training students need to access to enable them to join such a booming and exciting industry.”
Currently the civil and construction industries are considered key economic indicators and two of the largest employers in the country. There are more than 70 different careers available in the construction and civil industries covering a wide range of professional, trade and skilled occupations.
Mount Gellibrand Windfarm Progress Update
The Mount Gellibrand Windfarm is situated 20km west of Winchelsea at the foot of the historic Mt Gellibrand. WCJV’s scope at the project includes 44 132 MW wind turbine generator foundations and a total of 28 kilometres of access roads. The turbine footings contain a total of 49 tons of steel reinforcement and 360 cubic metres of concrete, which is batched on site at the mobile batch plant. Currently the joint venture has completed approx. 12 kilometres of road construction and exceeded targets by completing 3 foundation main pours last week alone. Short snapshot progress video below.
Students at Newport Gardens Primary School plant 100 trees to celebrate Earth Day
The event was an initiative of Civilex Victoria who, together with Kings Landscaping, donated 100 Illawarra Flame Trees to the school and spent the morning teaching students how to plant, maintain and nurture their tree.
Students were joined by Mayor of Hobsons Bay City Council, Cr Sandra Wilson; Newport Gardens Primary School Principal, Simon McGlade; Managing Director of Civilex Victoria, Joe Bartolo; and Director from Kings Landscaping, Chris Drew.
Cr Sandra Wilson, Joe Bartolo and Simon McGlade kicked off the day’s festivities, encouraging students and their families to celebrate World Earth Day and recognise the importance of climate and environmental education.
“It is important for children within our community to be engaged and empowered when it comes to the environment, to set up the foundation for a healthy and sustainable future,” said Cr Wilson.
“Equally, it is vital to build sustainability within our community to benefit families and their children for many years to come. This is a major focus in our community vision, Hobsons Bay 2030.”
“The activities today focused on reinforcing their lessons about sustainability and how to be the best environmental ambassadors they can be,” said Principal Simon McGlade.
Joe Bartolo concluded that “This event was made possible by our team who are all determined to leave a positive legacy in Melbourne’s West and to all Victorians in terms of local community benefits, quality infrastructure and enhancing the skills of future generations. Through partnering with Newport Gardens and Kings Landscaping, Civilex was able to continue its commitment to the community and looks forward to more opportunities to make a difference in the future.”
Although it was one of the coldest days on record for April, it couldn’t dampen the spirits of the children and their families of Newport Gardens. The day was pronounced a resounding success by all involved.
Civilex partners with WBHO Infrastructure to deliver the Mount Gellibrand Wind Farm
Civilex Victoria is proud to be a part of this exciting new project to develop our country’s natural energy sources.
The Mt Gellibrand windfarm is located within the Colac Otway Shire Council. The wind site area forms an ‘L’ shape and is positioned to the west and south of the landform known as ‘Mount Gellibrand’. The land on which the proposed wind farm is located consists of eight privately owned properties, primary used for livestock grazing and cropping. The wind farm is dispersed over an area of approximately 25 square kilometres that will continue to be used for grazing and cropping during the operation of the windfarm.
Acciona Energy Oceania Construction have contracted Civilex and WBHO (WCJV) to deliver the associated civil works including the turbine foundations. Works are due to commence later this month with a proposed completion date of December 2017.
The Civilex/WBHO scope includes:
• Construction of approximately 27km internal access roads.
• Construction of approximately 500m of associated drainage lines.
• Construction of approximately 92,000m of Turbine hardstand area
• Approximately 16,000m3 of structural concrete associated with the turbine foundations.
• Reconstruction of approximately 5.1km of Mooleric Rd.
Civilex Wins Civil Works at the High Capacity Metro Train Maintenance Facility
On 21 November 2016, the Victorian Government entered into a Public Private Partnership to deliver the High Capacity Metro Trains Project. Under this model, the consortium will be responsible for the design, construction, maintenance and financing of 65 High Capacity Metro Trains and a range of ancillary activities to support this, including construction of a new High Capacity Metro Train Maintenance Facility in Pakenham. Civilex will be conducting an early works package with further scope details in project snapshot
Civilex to Redevelop the Biomedical Science Building at Monash University
Civilex Victoria has secured the Biomedical Learning & Teaching Building (BLTB) Early Works Package at Monash University, Clayton. The package is part of the overall BLTB project which aims to improve the existing amenities and accommodate for the expansion of the department. Once complete, the school of Biomedical Science will span over 6 levels with state of art facilities to best prepare the graduates to make a difference in people’s lives by understanding disease better and how we can control, cure and prevent it.
Civilex will mobilise to site shortly and commence works in late January, with an anticipated completion in June 2017. The preliminary works include the demolition of two buildings, realignment of the existing road network, realignment of existing services including gas, sewer, recycled water, potable water, HV & LV. The building works also require the modification to the existing building 13 which includes internal concrete works, capping and modification to existing services and salvaging of existing material to reconstruct the double storey building opening.
The project team is eager to get started and pave the foundations for an important new project which will promote breakthroughs in Biomedical Science at one of the largest and most successful medical research hubs in Australia. In collaboration with DCWC & Monash University, we look forward to many successful project outcomes.
Civilex Leading the Way in Melbourne Metro Tunnel Project
Civilex are one of the first companies to have secured a contract on the Melbourne Metro Rail Tunnel Project. Starting at La Trobe Street on one of Melbourne’s busiest thoroughfares in the CBD, this package kick-starts the enabling works for the revolutionary rail development.
With construction already underway, Civilex is focussed on delivering this package of works to the highest safety standards. We care about the community and key stakeholders and aim to minimise disruption to both transport and pedestrian access during the relocation of the existing infrastructure. We endeavour to make the transition as seamless as possible for all affected by the works.
Civilex are due to complete preparation of the precinct by April 2017, with six more precincts across the city to undergo similar works in the coming months.
Civilex Showing Force at the BRW Triathlon
Congratulations to all staff that participated in the recent BRW Corporate Triathlon. 27 Civilex staff participated in the event with amazing results. It was great to see so many dedicated team members push themselves to complete the event.
A special thanks to Matt Gurney for organising the event, all those who participated and to those that showed support on the day, Civilex looks forward to a bigger and better turn out next year.
Welcome To Our New Civilex Staff
We are delighted to welcome 23 new staff members to the Civilex business. We are excited about this record month of employment and believe this exceptional growth is a testament to our outstanding performance. To all the following new employees, we wish you a long and happy future with Civilex.
Kerry Leung – Accountant
Michael Spiteri – HSEQ Manager
Kris Bogdanovski – Asset and Logistics Manager
Paul Brunato – Building Supervisor
Yuriy Martiros – Estimator
Mitchell McWhinney – Site Engineer
Sean Maye – Surveyor
Alex Duncan – Estimator
Victoria Eresjo – Accounts Payable Administrator
Alex Schmidt – Student Engineer
Cameron Warren – Student Engineer
Andre Raffo – Student Engineer
Jace Browne – Student Engineer
David Taylor – Site Supervisor
Daniel McKay – Project Engineer
Daniel Anthony – Grader Operator
Lloyd Claxton – Grader Operator
Marucs Whelan – Labourer
Corey Audsley – Labourer
Trent Delbridge – Labourer
Matt Oats – Labourer
Rhys Stevens – Labourer
Brayden Donnelly – Labourer
Sod Turn at Aylesbury Drive Altona. New Civilex Office Development
Today marks a special day for Civilex as we commence stage 1 works at Aylesbury Drive, Altona. This will be the location for the new Civilex office development. The works will occur in 2 phases. Stage 1 consists of 12 smaller warehouses located on the eastern side of our 24,000m2 supersite. We estimate that Stage 1 works will be completed 3 months ahead of the proposed 7 month program, with Stage 2 works commencing in April 2017. Stage 2 works involve the construction of the new Civilex offices, warehouse and plant yard.
With the overall design almost completed and our attention on finishing touches, we are very excited to see it all coming together. We have focused on engineering a superior working environment for our staff that promotes health, wellness and sustainability. Consideration has been given to the types of building materials to be used. The walls will consist of recycled materials where possible, including in-situ concrete walls, floor to ceiling glass to allow natural light and airflow and polished concrete floors to complete the space. For added tranquillity and a sense of calmness, an indoor garden will be a feature of the new supersite. To boost staff health and wellbeing and support a happy culture, a range of amenities including a fully functioning gym, large chef’s kitchen and meals area, relaxed courtyard equipped with BBQ and outdoor seating, half basketball court and landscaped lawn area have been incorporated with employees in mind. More unique spaces include quiet rooms, relaxation areas, games room and training areas.
RAAF Base East Sale, Contract Secured
Civilex Victoria is proud to have secured the $25M contract with Laing O’Rourke for the civil component of works at the RAAF Base in Sale. The works include provision of construction access to site and temporary hangar arrangement to store the 10 aircrafts, which have been ordered by the Department of Defence. As well as this, there are various permanent works including the flight line shelter pavements, taxiway pavements, car parks and access roads. This is a sizeable and prominent job for Civilex to win, and we look forward to commencing works on the project, and continuing to develop our equally rewarding relationship with the Department of Defence.
Melbourne Airport Jet Base, Contract Secured
Civilex are pleased to have just now secured a substantial project with a new client, Hutchinsons Builders. We are looking forward to commencing works on this project, which encompasses construction of a new hangar for Private Jets and excavation for a new building. Works will involve construction of concrete aprons, earthworks, asphalting, and landscaping. Another new client to welcome to our Civilex family, we look forward to building a strong and equally rewarding relationship with Hutchinsons Builders.
Contract Secured for Junction Oval
Civilex are delighted to have once again secured a contract with Cockrams, building on our rewarding relationship. The project consists of the construction of a brand new Oval and Car Park, as well as a new footpath and drainage system. Another Oval Construction win for Civilex, as we continue to impress with our previous Oval experience.
Civilex celebrated a record year within the company in terms of growth and turnover, whilst maintaining a strong profit margin. With staff numbers growing from 60 to 100, we are excited about this growth and are looking to continue on this path and to secure more work with top tier clients.
McKimmies Road Shutdown
Civilex are thrilled with the outcome achieved in the McKimmies Road shutdown over the weekend. The complete road rehabilitation occurred between 6:30pm Friday night and 3:30am Monday morning. Civilex have been praised for the way the shutdown was managed and want to thank everyone who was involved as there were some long shifts and lots of hard work but the end result looks fantastic.
Caulfield Grammar Contract Secured
Civilex are delighted to have recently secured a large project with a new client, Caulfield Grammar. We are excited about this project which encompasses two new maintenance facility buildings, creating an access road to the main road, constructing new retaining walls, updating their carpark, along with their landscaping. Another new client to welcome to the Civilex fold, we look forward to building a strong and equally rewarding relationship with Caulfield Grammar.
Civilex Eighth Birthday Celebrations
The champagne was flowing when Civilex recently celebrated their 8th birthday. In just eight short years, Civilex have grown into a market leader with an annual turnover of $60M plus, and have successfully created a name for themselves as a company that delivers what they promise. Civilex took this opportunity to revel in what has been a tremendous eight years for the young company, and had a night of fun with all staff. The Directors would like to take this chance to thank our staff for all their hard work and contributions in helping create and grow the Civilex name. We look forward to the next eight years and just how far we can go.
Civilex are happy to announce four new members to the Civilex Team. Due to rapid growth in our company, we have recently added a new Estimator and Project Manager to the fold, to support the every growing workload. As well as this, Civilex have created two new roles; Business Development Manager and Estimating Assistant. We are excited to have a Business Development Manager on-board to liaise with our existing clients and to develop and foster new relationships, and assist with increasing the amount of projects we receive. Our new Estimating Assistant role was created to assist the Estimators with the increasing volume of Tenders we are submitting, and to ensure that the quality of the tenders delivered is of the highest standard. We wish all four new team members a long and successful career with Civilex.
In conjunction with Pitchcraft, Civilex recently undertook the redevelopment of Eureka Stadium Ovals located in Ballarat, which come 2017, will be used in AFL matches. The revitalised facility boasts over 5,000 undercover seats, and a total stadium capacity for over 11,000 spectators; and besides being realigned in a now North-East to South-West orientation, the stadium also incorporates enhanced drainage and irrigation systems. The new home to the Western Bulldogs, Eureka Stadium is considered a great success for Civilex.
Soccer Match – Deakin University
Civilex recently achieved practical completion at the sports oval precinct for Deakin University. Civilex was awarded the head contract to construct a high profile sporting precinct that would cater for an extensive range of sports including athletics, soccer, football, cricket and baseball to name a few. The sporting precinct comprises of a variety of playing surfaces to encompass the varying array of sports that are played there. The precinct effortlessly combines natural turf with synthetic grass, acrylic with synthetic rubber. Deakin University were remarkably impressed with what Civilex delivered, feeling we surpassed their expectations in every facet of the project. Deakin University, being so satisfied with the work, invited the Civilex team for a friendly, but competitive, game of soccer on the new field. The turf was fresh, and spirits high, as the Deakin University team and the Civilex team went head to head on the brand new soccer field. The game was close with Civilex getting a close win over the client. The day was a great success, with everyone feeling pleased about the job that had been done there.
Conset and Civilex support for the inaugural Bully Zero Australian Foundation
As part of our commitment to the local community, Conset and Civilex management and staff attended the inaugural Bully Zero Australia Foundation Charity Ball. This foundation aims to promote zero tolerance to the culture of bullying. Conset and Civilex are proud to be supporters of this event.
New office development Conset and Civilex
With the rapid expansion of Conset and Civilex, a new facility is being planned to house the head office and yard. We have recently purchased land in Altona and building will commence shortly. Our new home is expected to house our construction teams and equipment, and reflects our business strategy for growth in coming years.
Civilex announces Melbourne Knights Football Sponsorship
Civilex is pleased to announce our sponsorship of the Melbourne Knights Football. As part of the National Premier League, the Club is well regarded in the sporting community.
Joe Bartolo, Managing Director Civilex announced “We are proud to be a local business supporting the local community”.