Pacific Services Group Holdings - Garden Island (East) Critical Infrastructure Recovery Program

1 July 2021

One of the Estate and Infrastructure Group (E&IG) initiatives in engaging Indigenous Businesses, has centred on the Garden Island (East) Critical Infrastructure Recovery Program – Stage One in Sydney. The Commonwealth, through E&IG, appointed Pacific Services Group Holdings (PSGH) as the Managing Contractor under the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (through Exception 17 of Division 2) in early 2015.

PSGH was established in 2011 by Troy Rugless to provide Indigenous construction and project services. Since the introduction of the Indigenous Procurement Policy (IPP), Federal Government Agencies like Defence have embraced the policy, allowing the growth and development of companies like PSGH. Without this engagement, PSGH would not have had the ability to employ and sub-contract to many Indigenous people and businesses. This compliments the vision of both Defence and PSGH in achieving reconciliation through business.

The initial scope of the Garden Island project, identified in early 2014, involved an upgrade of the Cruiser Wharf to address the existing conditions as well as identifying structural and engineering services risks. Following the initial scope development by PSGH and detailed consultation with Navy, it was agreed that the initial scope would not meet the Navy’s long terms needs. The resultant scope of work involved demolishing the existing Cruiser and Oil Wharfs, constructing a new single continuous wharf in their place on a new alignment and extending the adjoining East Dock Wharf to meet the new realigned wharf. PSGH, as the Commonwealth’s Managing Contractor, managed the design, with the projects final cost totalling $263.3 million.

For the Delivery Phase of the project, PSGH recognised the long-term benefits of working with a suitably qualified construction industry partner. After a robust procurement process, PSGH appointed Lendlease in a joint venture arrangement; forming the Garden Island Bayinguwa Delivery Team (GIBDT). Bayinguwa is the indigenous name for Garden Island.

The GIBDT have now achieved a significant milestone, with the first vessel berthing at the new wharf on 01 July 2021. In achieving this new facilities milestone for Defence, the joint venture has provided an ideal opportunity for both PSGH and Lendlease to understand more about each of their respective businesses, including PSGH undertaking several cultural awareness workshops with Lendlease.

Lendlease’s partnership with PSGH represents a significant milestone in Lendlease’s commitment to build respectful relationships and create meaningful  opportunities with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. On this project, Lendlease and PSGH have achieved 4.6 per cent of the workforce comprising First Nations employees and 4.4 per cent of expenditure, or approximately $10 million, with 35 First Nations suppliers contributing to the project.

First Nations engagement and participation was also a key component of the subcontractor on boarding process, providing opportunities for First Nations businesses to partner on some of the largest subcontracting packages including Eather Group, Weilwun and Two-Way Cranes. The Industrial Demolition Services delivered 20 per cent First Nations spend during the demolition of the existing wharves and Cleary Bros spent more than $3 million with ten companies through the installation of the revetment rock and the civils and pavement works at the Project.