May 25, 2017
by Platform Research

Major work officially commences on Bruce Highway Upgrade – Urbanalyst


Major construction has officially commenced on the $929.3 million Bruce Highway Upgrade – Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway, which aims to increase safety and ease congestion for around 40,000 motorists who use the route daily.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Darren Chester and State Main Roads and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey were on the Sunshine Coast last week to turn the first sod for the upgrade project.

Mr Chester said the project was part of the Australian Government’s record $75 billion commitment to essential airport, road, and rail infrastructure projects.

“Upgrading the Bruce Highway is a priority project of the Australian Government’s infrastructure roll out, evidenced by the $844 million allocated in this year’s budget for new projects,” Mr Chester said.

“This upgrade will provide nearly 700 direct jobs, and project works will include transforming the Caloundra Road Interchange to a Diverging Diamond Interchange—a first for Australia.”

Queensland Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the project was vital for the continued development of the coast and would provide safer, more efficient travel for motorists and industry along this section of the Bruce Highway.

“The project will involve upgrading the Highway from four to six lanes, including major upgrades to both the Caloundra Road and Sunshine Motorway interchanges. A new two-way western service road will also be provided for local traffic between Steve Irwin Way and Tanawha Tourist Drive,” Mr Bailey said.

“Importantly, it will separate long-distance Bruce Highway traffic from local traffic movements, allowing the highway to function as a high-speed, high-volume corridor.

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May 25, 2017
by Platform Research

Australian Government commits up to $5.3 billion to build Western Sydney Airport – Urbanalyst


The Australian Government has committed up to $5.3 billion over 10 years in the 2017-18 Budget to build Western Sydney Airport through a new company, WSA Co, and deliver on the government’s commitment to ensure the new airport is operational by 2026.

WSA Co will be established early in the 2017-18 financial year with a high quality board and management team, including extensive private sector experience. Once established, it will enter into a comprehensive set of contracts with the government, based on the same terms as were provided to Sydney Airport Group under its Right of First Refusal.

Under the set of contracts, WSA Co will be constructing an airport with a 3.7 kilometre runway and a terminal with capacity for 10 million passengers a year on an approximate 1,780-hectare site at Badgerys Creek.

The first stage of the airport is also expected to include cargo facilities, maintenance areas, a public transport hub, car parking and areas set aside for business parks.

With construction set to commence by the end of 2018, a tender for enabling works is expected to be issued before the end of 2017. WSA Co will also conduct a procurement process to select a private sector construction company or consortium, most likely under a design and construct contract, for the main construction works.

When the proposed airport opens it is expected to service around five million passengers a year – about the number of passengers that use Gold Coast Airport today. After around five years, this could grow to 10 million passengers each year.

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May 25, 2017
by Platform Research

NSW’s Biggest Hospital Redevelopment Takes Another Step Forward – The Urban Developer


Health Infrastructure will move forward with New South Wales’ largest hospital redevelopment after appointing a contractor to their $900 million Westmead Hospital project.

Multiplex was appointed to undertake the main work within the Westmead health, education and research precinct, which will include a 12 storey acute services building designed by architects HDR Rice Daubney.

It will connect Westmead Hospital and The Children’s Hospital at Westmead and provide a total of 95,559 square metres of space, hosting a range of adult and paediatric services including emergency, pharmacy, imaging and state-of-the art operating suites.

The project is expected to generate some 1,500 construction jobs per year.

Under an ‘Early Contractor Involvement’ arrangement, Mulitplex will work with Westmead clinicians, patients, families and community members to finalise the design for the redevelopment.

Multiplex Regional Managing Director David Ghannoum said he was excited to play such a vital role in the Westmead Redevelopment

“Not only will it deliver much-needed improved medical services to Greater Western Sydney, but the project will also generate significant employment throughout its construction and beyond,” he said.

“We intend to use this opportunity to leave a positive legacy in the Greater Western Sydney area, with a number of social investments planned including committing five per cent of the total contract price to Aboriginal Participation in Construction (APIC).”

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May 19, 2017
by Platform Research

Jobs galore at Orion – The Queensland Times

Orion Springfield

If you consider yourself a retail pro or master chef, then Orion Springfield Central may just have your next job opportunity.

The positions- a store manager for Kathmandu, store manager for ITShop Group and a 2nd-3rd year apprentice chef for the popular Orion Hotel were all posted to the shopping centre’s Facebook page yesterday, receiving 110 comments and 57 shares.

Orion Springfield Central marketing manager Yasmin Chrzescijanski said interest in the positions had been extremely positive and she could now reveal the opening date for the much anticipated Kathmandu store.

“The response to the jobs has been overwhelming with over 4500 clicks online,” Ms Chrzescijanski said.

“We’re also happy to say that Kathmandu is on track to open in early June.

Orion Hotel Head Chef Tristan Corcoran said the team of seven chefs were excited to receive the different job applications and were hoping to employ someone from the Greater Springfield community.

“We’re looking to replace some staff that are leaving, so if we can get someone from around the area that would be perfect as we’re a community-based hotel and most of the people who work here live locally,” Mr Corcoran said.

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May 19, 2017
by Platform Research

Brisbane Fast Emerging Out of Southern Shadow –


Significant social and economic change will propel Brisbane into Australia’s metropolitan major league with Sydney and Melbourne over the next decade, according to a report from Australian demographer Bernard Salt.

Imagining Brisbane in 2027 predicts the River City will experience a ‘transformative catch-up phase’ and join Sydney and Melbourne as one of Australia’s 21st Century business and cultural hubs.

“Brisbane is steadily and determinedly elbowing its way into the cosy coterie of the Sydney-Melbourne nexus,” Mr Salt said.

“No longer will it seem that Sydney and Melbourne operate as the only portals through which the Australian economy connects with the rest of the world.

“The scale, culture and lifestyle that is present in Sydney and Melbourne today will be increasingly absorbed within Brisbane.

“Sydney and Melbourne will still be important, still the dominant cities by 2027, but their primacy will be lessened by the rise of Brisbane.”

Brisbane’s step up to major city status will be driven by factors including significant population growth, immigration and the rise of the knowledge or tertiary-educated workforce, according to the report.

These gear shifts will transform the way people live and see the growth of knowledge worker communities around the CBD and within inner suburbs

Mr Salt said one of the major shifts in Brisbane’s evolution and growth would be increased residential density within 3km of the CBD.

“Brisbane’s inner urban footprint is ripe for residential density,” he said.

“At the 2011 Census, almost one-third of dwellings within this zone were separate dwellings, as compared with 9 per cent and 4 per cent in Melbourne and Sydney respectively.

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May 19, 2017
by Platform Research

Construction Begins On Melbourne’s Newest Rail Line – The Urban Developer


Construction has officially commenced on the brand new rail line that will carry train services to the heart of one of Victoria’s fastest growing areas.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan joined Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green in Mernda to mark the start of works on the extension of the South Morang line to Mernda.

Over the coming weeks, construction crews will establish work areas, remove vegetation and prepare the rail corridor for major construction to ramp up later this year.

“The community fought for this project and now we are delivering it – to bring frequent, reliable services to the heart of our growing community,” Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green said.

The $600 million Mernda Rail Extension will build eight kilometres of new, duplicated track and three state-of-the-art stations at Mernda, Hawkstowe and near Marymede Catholic College. The stations are expected to be used by around 8,000 passengers every day when they open in early 2019.

The last time a train line was extended by more than two stations was in 1930, when the East Malvern line was extended to Glen Waverley.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan said she thought the project will change people’s lives for the better.

“The project is fully funded, construction is underway and we’re not wasting a moment getting on with it,” she said in a statement.

The Victorian Government said the project will create up to 3,000 jobs – 1,200 directly during construction and as many as 1,800 indirectly in local businesses and industries supported by the project. It is also expected to support more than 70 ongoing jobs once trains are up and running.

Like every major Labor Government project, the Mernda Rail Extension will also provide employment for young workers and people re-skilling from other industries, with at least 10 per cent of work carried out by trainees, apprentices and engineering cadets.

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May 12, 2017
by Platform Research

Contract for first stage of Ipswich Motorway upgrade awarded to Bielby Hull Albem Joint Venture – Urbanalyst

Ipswich Motorway upgrade - night

The Queensland and Australian governments last week announced the contract for the $400 million Ipswich Motorway Upgrade from Rocklea to Darra Stage 1 has been awarded to Brisbane-based Bielby Hull Albem Joint Venture, with works expected to begin later this year.

The Rocklea to Darra Stage 1 section of the project involves a 3 kilometre upgrade of the Ipswich Motorway between Granard Road, Rocklea, and Oxley Road, Oxley, with the motorway to be widened from 4 to six lanes and new traffic signals to be installed at the Suscatand Street intersection.

The section will also include higher bridges over Oxley Creek, including 7 new bridges, a new southern service road connection from Rocklea industrial precinct to the Oxley commercial and retail areas, and a new northern service road connection over Oxley Creek floodplain.

“The Ipswich Motorway is currently a major source of frustration for more than 85,000 motorists who use this section of the motorway daily, including up to 12,000 trucks,” said Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

“This project will not only improve safety and travel times for motorists, it will support 470 direct jobs which is great news for local workers and business.”

Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure Paul Fletcher said the project was delivering on a commitment to upgrade the Ipswich Motorway.

“More than 12,000 trucks use this section of the Ipswich Motorway daily and are experiencing delays that are currently putting pressure on our fright network, and increasing the risks associated with road accidents,” Mr Fletcher said.

“This major infrastructure project will upgrade the Ipswich Motorway from four to six lanes along a three kilometre stretch between Rocklea and Oxley and delivers on a commitment made by the federal Government.

“The commercial vehicles and local commuters who travel this road on a daily basis will experience improved travel times and motorway capacity into the industrial heart of Brisbane.”

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May 12, 2017
by Platform Research

Victorian Budget 2017 to include $100m for North East Link road project – Urbanalyst


The Victorian Government last week announced an allocation of $100 million to complete the design, planning, and preconstruction works of the proposed North East Link project, which will connect the Metropolitan Ring Road (M80) at Greensborough, with either the Eastern Freeway or Eastlink.

The funding – to be provided as part of the 2017-18 State Budget – will ensure the North East Link Authority can start work immediately, with geotechnical investigations starting at 24 sites across Melbourne’s north-eastern suburbs.

Premier Daniel Andrews said the extensive geotechnical investigations will provide valuable information about the conditions under the earth, including the type and strength of rock under the ground and the location of ground water.

Other detailed planning and engineering work will include field investigations, equipment procurement, service investigations, site establishment and upgrades to existing infrastructure.

“These expert engineering, environmental and social investigations will help determine the best design for the project, with a focus on protecting existing urban areas and minimising the impact to the environment,” Mr Andrews said.

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April 28, 2017
by Platform Research

Woolloongabba’s South City Square Anchors New Major Tenants – The Urban Developer

Gabba South City Square

The $600 million South City Square urban regeneration project in Woolloongabba, secured Woolworths and Reading Entertainment as anchor tenants, with both retailers signing 15-year leases in response to the significant retail demand south of the river.

The deals represented a substantial milestone for joint venture partners Pellicano and Perri Projects, who integrated a 13,000 square metre retail component into the project to create a new retail and lifestyle destination in Woolloongabba.

The emerging suburb of Woolloongabba is located just 2km from the Brisbane CBD and is easily accessible to the surrounding area.

Property research firm Urbis forecasted the Woolloongabba catchment’s population to grow to over 33,000 residents by 2036, representing a 50 per cent increase from the current population of approximately 22,000.

“The strong interest from high profile tenants, including nationally renowned Woolworths Group and the internationally recognised Reading Entertainment, has reaffirmed our belief that South City Square will be the centre of Woolloongabba’s transformation into a dynamic retail and lifestyle precinct,” Pellicano Development Operations Manager Michael Kent said.

“When creating the vision for South City Square, Pellicano and Perri Projects recognised the strong market demand.

“We sought to create a project that integrated premium retail and hospitality offerings with the quality residential offering, extensive civic uses and public space, to build this new concentrated activity centre for Brisbane.”

Location IQ has reported that the current retail spend in the main trade area in Woolloongabba is estimated at over $358 million per annum, and is projected to more than triple in size, increasing to $1.08 billion per annum over the period to 2031.

Woolworths’ Regional Property Manager, Phillip Peel, said the company was thrilled to secure one of the key retail tenancies in the South City Square development, as the growing population indicated clear demand for a full-line supermarket.

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April 28, 2017
by Platform Research

Australia Top Choice For Foreign Direct Investment – Your Investment Property


Australia has retained its top-ten ranking for the seventh consecutive year in A.T. Kearney’s Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Confidence Index. Australia was ranked 9th in the 2017 edition of the index.

According to A.T. Kearney, a global management consulting firm, the index is a forward-looking analysis of how political, economic, and regulatory changes will likely affect FDI inflows into countries in the coming years. The index is built using primary data from a proprietary survey administered to senior executives of the world’s leading corporations. Respondents include C-level execs and regional business leads. All companies participating in the survey have annual revenues of $500m or more. 

Since its introduction in 1998, the index has reliably pointed toward firms’ top choices globally for FDI, with the countries ranked in the index reliably tracking closely with the destinations for the actual global FDI inflows.

In this year’s survey, 35% of respondents said they were optimistic about Australia’s economic outlook, compared to 32% in 2016. Investors from Asia are among the most optimistic and rank the country third among the most attractive investment destinations. Investors from the IT sector demonstrate the greatest interest in Australia.

“Relative to the rest of the world, Australia has seen unprecedented growth and stability. While there is broad and healthy acknowledgement that we need new answers going forward to sustain our economic growth, the fact that international investors remain interested in Australia is … good news,” said Nigel Andrade, partner and head of Australia at A.T. Kearney.

“Australia’s [generally secure] environment and the efficiency of its legal and regulatory processes are strong attractions for foreign investors. The results of this year’s Index show that these two aspects are the top factors that global investors look at when making a decision about their investment destination.”

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