26/03/2008 - 22:00

DORIC gearing up for Pilbara projects

26/03/2008 - 22:00

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The state’s booming resource sector is proving to be a boon for Subiaco-based construction firm DORIC, which is currently locked in final negotiations for two more contracts, while the releases of its refurbished houses were quickly snapped up over the we

DORIC gearing up for Pilbara projects

The state’s booming resource sector is proving to be a boon for Subiaco-based construction firm DORIC, which is currently locked in final negotiations for two more contracts, while the releases of its refurbished houses were quickly snapped up over the weekend.

The group’s residential builder and development arm, Jaxon, announced that it had secured preferred tender status for a major contract to build the first stage of a residential program for Woodside Petroleum Ltd’s Pluto gas project.

The $30 million first stage is to be built within Karratha and will include 29 houses with the aim of hosting permanent Pilbara residents such as families, while fly-in, fly-out workers could stay in units that Jaxon is looking at tendering for.

A spokesperson for Jaxon said the company had been locked in negotiations with Woodside for a long time and was hoping discussions were now on the home stretch.

No deadline has been set for the finalisation of negotiations.

The $12 billion Pluto LNG project is expected to create up to 3,000 direct jobs during construction and 300 jobs during the project’s operation from 2010.

A further 3,000 indirect jobs, mostly in Western Australia, will also be created.

The influx of workers stemming from Pluto and other resource projects due to come online in the Pilbara, such as Fortescue Metal Group Ltd’s iron ore mine and expansion projects by BHP Billiton Ltd and Rio Tinto Ltd, have boosted the region’s population and lifted demand for land.

Last weekend, the Department of Housing and Works, in conjunction with project manager Jaxon, released more refurbished units as part of the South Hedland Urban Renewal Project.

A spokesperson for the department said the price range for the six properties was between $350,000 and $415,000, with five going to first homebuyers.

Jaxon is managing the development of 700 services lots for the project over a three to four year period, as well as the refurbishment of 500 houses.

Late last year, 35 lots were released by public ballot and the government plans to develop around 455 lots spread over various divisions during the year, subject to ongoing demand.

The release of land is a bid by the government to make accessible affordable housing in the area, with first homebuyers given preference.

With an ever-increasing population comes a higher demand for health services in the region, and DORIC’s other potential contract could be the $114 million second stage of the Port Hedland Health Campus.

DORIC announced it is currently in final negotiations with the Department of Housing and Works for the contract, which is expected to be wrapped up in the near term.

The second stage will be connected to the existing stage one aged care building and will include ambulatory care, diagnostics, an in-patient unit and a support services building.

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