Local jobs focus for pool contractor

18 Dec 2012 4:46 PMJann Stuckey

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The redevelopment of the Gold Coast Aquatic Centre has taken a major step forward with the Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games, Jann Stuckey, and Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate announcing the appointment of the managing contractor.

Watpac was awarded the contract following a two stage expression of interest and tender process, with a key requirement being the creation of local jobs on the Gold Coast.

Minister Stuckey said Watpac would be in charge of building a world class aquatic centre in time to host the 2014 Pan Pacific Swimming Championships (Pan Pacs).

“Watpac has an excellent track record of delivering major infrastructure projects within the required timeframe, but it is also committed to using local resources as much as possible and that means more jobs for Queenslanders,” Ms Stuckey said.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said there had been a heavy focus on the wider economic benefits.

“As joint project partners, the Newman Government and the Gold Coast City Council want to generate more employment for our region and the pool redevelopment alone will deliver approximately 350 new jobs,” Mayor Tom Tate said.

Minister Stuckey said following the Pan Pacs in August 2014, the new facility will reopen to the community – two years earlier than originally scheduled.

“This was a keenly contested process, and with a tight construction schedule, Gold Coasters will see their new world-class aquatic centre take shape quickly,” she said.

Mayor Tate said the announcement of the managing contractor was a milestone for the city’s first new Commonwealth Games infrastructure project.

“This is the beginning of many highlights for the aquatic centre, which will not only host the 2014 Pan Pacs and the 2018 Commonwealth Games swimming and diving competitions, but also many other future national and international events,” he said.

“This project is a win-win, delivering fantastic new international-standard aquatic facilities for our community and major long-term economic benefits for the city.

“With projects such as Skilled Park and Metricon Stadium under their belt, Watpac not only has an impressive resume for delivering world-class major sporting infrastructure on the Gold Coast on time and on budget, their tender for the aquatic centre also met the mark on price and local employment.”

The project will be managed by the Department of State Development, Infrastructure and Planning and Gold Coast City Council will be working with the Department and the managing contractor to ensure minimal disruption to local businesses and residents during construction.

Watpac will take control of the aquatic centre site from the end of February 2013.

[ENDS] 13 December 2012