Hansen Yuncken completes construction on Mer Island school
Australia’s largest private commercial building company, Hansen Yuncken has completed construction of the newest campus of the Tagai State College on Mer Island in the eastern Torres Strait.
The new $33 million school campus will enhance educational opportunities for young people on Mer Island allowing them to complete their schooling on the remote island.
With capacity for up to 175 students, the school features a multi-purpose activities centre, culture centre, canteen, covered basketball court, principal’s residence and teacher accommodation units.
Hansen Yuncken Site Manager Steve Hay said that the project demonstrated Hansen Yuncken’s ability to overcome the logistical challenges of building a state-of-the-art project in a very remote location.
“The Tagai State College project was a significant undertaking for Hansen Yuncken with most of the materials for the project having to be barged in from Cairns,” Mr Hay said.
Mr Hay said that significant engagement with the local community on the project, including providing training and up-skilling opportunities to 55 Indigenous employees, had been a particular highlight of the project for Hansen Yuncken.
“We’re very pleased to have been able to work in partnership with the local community on this project by providing hands-on experience and training opportunities to islanders in skills ranging from kitchen hand to construction work. These trainees logged over 18,000 hours throughout the duration of the project,” Mr Hay said.
“Many of the employees who worked with us on the construction of Tagai State College have now been engaged by some of our sub-contractors in Cairns. Five are now working in maintenance roles at the school, with two expected to obtain full-time roles with Education Queensland.
“Given the isolation of Mer Island and the attached logistic challenges, we’re proud to have completed the Tagai State College redevelopment within a nine-month period and ahead of the contract completion date.”
Hansen Yuncken, established in 1918, is Australia’s largest private commercial construction contractor. The company employs 700 people around Australia with offices in Brisbane, Cairns, Townsville, Rockhampton, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Hobart, Canberra, Newcastle, Orange, Shepparton and Albury/Wodonga.
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