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26 July 2016

Did You Know - Fremantle Harbour


Fremantle Harbour in 1893

Did you of Fremantle Harbour started in 1892 under Engineer in Chief C Y O'Connor. Construction involved the blasting and dredging of a rocky bar to create a channel, then dredging to deepen the river basin with two moles built to protect the entrance.

It is largely unchanged today from the day it opened in 1897, apart from some expansion and deepening work and is the largest and busiest general cargo port in Western Australia.


13 July 2016

Career Corner - Joshua, Estimating Manager

We chatted with Joshua Ellery, Estimating Manager for Dale Alcock Home Improvements about his career so far in the Western Australian construction industry.

Tell us about your current role as Estimating Manager:

My job is to provide support to my experienced team across our New Homes and Development Solutions divisions. Their role is to prepare competitive and accurate costs for our clients, then ensuring the delivery of contracts and the job addenda. The documents in conjunction with the contract drawings then become the work instruction for what our Construction Supervisors and Tradespeople use on site.

How did you progress to your current role?

I started as an Apprentice Bricklayer and this is where I first had contact with the Construction Training Fund and featured in one of their career promotion videos in 2004.

From there I move into the role of Scheduler at Dale Alcock Home Improvements, calculating and ordering materials and labour for our tradespeople on site. It was amazing to see the office side of things, and to share my knowledge of my trade with the business. After a few years I progressed back out on site, but this time as a Construction Supervisor. My duties were overseeing and being responsible for all construction works on site, from earthworks right up until the handover of the keys.

Two years later I moved back into the office, initially managing the Scheduling Department and then two years later I was given the amazing opportunity to manage the Estimating Department for Dale Alcock Homes.

Apart from my Trade Certificates all of my training has been on the job coaching / mentoring initiatives which are an integral part of our staff programs to develop our people. I am almost at the end of a Certificate IV in Building and Construction through North Metropolitan TAFE and this has also been on the job allowing me to use my career to complete the qualification.

What are your future career goals?

My future will always be focused on continuous improvement within this industry. I will always be searching for new ideas and ways to improve myself both professionally and personally, in the effort that I will pass this knowledge to my teams so they can experience growth and success in their lives.

What do you like about being involved in the WA construction industry?

I love building! There is so much about this great industry which keeps me motivated and inspired throughout each stage of my development within it. I have always loved to be part of a home taking shape and seeing people's dreams come to life. It is such a tangible and emotive way to feel rewarded from your job.

The diversity of the industry is what keeps me motivated each day. There is more to learn than anyone could in a lifetime and it supports such a wide variety of crafts and skills.

Finally, what are your interests outside of work?

I love the outdoors and the West Australian weather. We live in an amazing state!

Any chance I get I will go for a kick of the footy with friends, head down to the beach or take a bush walk. I am also a real 'green thumb', I enjoy landscaping and gardening and have spent a lot of time developing my own back yard and helping my friends do the same.

My view is to take as much advantage of our blue skies and brilliant sunshine as I can.


05 July 2016

Did You Know - Mundaring Weir


Images Courtesy of the State Library of WA (000798d)

Did you know construction of the Mundaring Weir started in 1898 and was built to store water for the Goldfields Water Supply Scheme.

Large boulders known as plums were embedded in the concrete to minimise the amount of cement used for the construction of the wall and to bed each layer of concrete together.

The 76,418 casks of cement were imported from Britain and Germany. The Engineer was T C Hodgson overseen by C Y O'Connor and it took 5 years to complete.

The weir wall was raised by ten metres between 1949 and 1951 to increase its capacity.