8 August 2019
Supporting the delivery of the Prison Bed Capacity Program
We love to create places and leave a legacy which helps shape communities. While our projects in sectors such as education, rail and road, aged care and retail visibly contribute to the world around us, there is a sector which isn’t often discussed in our line of work.
Our people do a lot of work to support the NSW Government, and recently we just completed projects for the Department of Communities and Justice, delivering projects within the Prison Bed Capacity Program. The NSW Government, through its commitment to improve standards and increase prison bed capacity, developed the Prison Bed Capacity Program to transform and progress the NSW correctional system by investing $3.8 billion to create more beds and expand, building new innovative facilities. Three of our Sydney-based team members have been supporting the delivery of multiple projects across this program. Danielle Gardner, one of our project managers shares her project with us.
South Coast Correctional Centre Upgrade
The greatest challenge of this project was working within a live, maximum-security facility where security considerations are paramount, according to TSA project manager, Danielle Gardner. The works included integrating a new security system into the existing system, which also required upgrades. Danielle is an integral member of the Justice Infrastructure & Assets team, seconded to their office for the life of the project under a GC21 contract. “Working from the client’s office is the best way to deliver outcomes for a project like this,” says Danielle. “A collaborative environment is essential for a smooth line of communication with the on-site team, especially regarding the sequencing of logistical movements and works inside the existing facility.” The project includes a 360-bed expansion, new audio visual link (AVL) suites, recreation oval and health clinic.
Danielle’s background in complex, multi-million dollar projects ensured the $170 million expansion project was a success. This is one of the first upgrades within the Prison Bed Capacity Program, and the success of this project helps set the standard for other projects within the program moving forward.
The construction of the cells utilised an innovative pre-fabricated modular design which were manufactured through Corrective Services Industries by inmates as part of Corrective Services upskill program. 160 of the new beds are pre-fabricated modular designs. The facility also includes new state-of-the-art AVL capabilities, meaning that logistical pressures on the Department of Communities and Justice are alleviated, as inmates will be able to attend court hearings remotely.
The prison will create 120 new jobs for the Nowra region and will hold just over 1,000 inmates, almost doubling its original size.
Completion was achieved in July 2019, and Danielle has moved on to the Cessnock 240 Minimum Security prison works. The works for this project includes five new 48-bed minimum security accommodation blocks, a new gatehouse, reception area, visitor’s area, programs building and health facility.
The South Coast Correctional Centre Upgrade is one of the largest projects Danielle has worked on, although definitely not the shortest. “I renovated two homes in the UK and moved to Australia in a matter of months,” she says. “I’m quite pleased with how far I’ve come. I moved to Australia three years ago, and I’ve achieved so much with TSA, and I’m excited to be working with Justice Infrastructure & Assets on such a large and complex program of works.”