Will skill shortages obstruct a new construction boom in Western Australia?
Western Australia (WA) is a state occupying one-third of the continents total landmass, with an area of over 2.5 million square kilometres. With its colossal dimensions, low population of around 2.6 million and isolated capital city Perth. It is considered Australia's final frontier. WA has an export-oriented economy specialising in minerals, oil and gas, and agriculture. In 2015, it was the nation's largest exporter, accounting for 41 per cent of its merchandise exports.
Major project underway
The WA Government recently announced the completion of the first stage of one its biggest urban regeneration projects, Shoreline. The landmark development will eventually cover 47 hectares in North Coogee and deliver up to 2,500 apartments and townhouses for more than 5,000 new residents.
"Over a two-year period, LandCorp has transformed this underutilised former industrial area through significant site remediation, civil works and landscaping," said Lands Minister Terry Redman. Landcorp is the Western Australian Government's own agency that develops land for living and working to create places to facilitate social and economic prosperity. Shoreline at North Coogee will redefine urban living in Perth by delivering housing in a thoughtfully planned community that takes full advantage of its prime beachside location.
Shoreline is the first precinct of the state government's 15-20 year vision to transform former industrial land in the wider Cockburn coast redevelopment area, which will eventually be home to 12,000 people in 6,000 dwellings.
Ten occupations in demand
It is expected the redevelopment will generate more than 9,000 construction jobs and 3,000 local jobs over the lifetime of the project, but what kind of construction jobs are currently in demand in WA? The list below highlight's the occupations which were assessed in 2015 by the Department of Employment, specifically for WA, for which shortages or some recruitment difficulties are evident.
Due to skill shortages and lack of experience, ten of the most in demand occupations include:
- Plumbers/ gas fitter
- Quantity surveyor
- Construction estimator
- Solid plasterer
- Roof tiler
- Wall and floor tiler
State spending continues with $7.7 billion worth of infrastructure investment over the next four years on transport infrastructure. Including the following ten projects:
- $2 billion investment for the Forrestfield-Airport Link
- $1.5 billion towards the Perth Freight Link
- $427 million for the $1.9 billion Metro Area Express rail project
- $145 million on dual carriageway works
- $49 million for the Ellenbrook Bus Rapid Transit project
$1 billion worth of investment in school infrastructure, including:
- $67 million for the new North Butler senior high school
- $50 million in new expansions at Shenton College
- $32 million for the continued redevelopment of Carnarvon Community College
- $378 million over next four years for construction of a new museum
- $1.2 billion for the Perth Children's Hospital
WA is a fantastic place to live, and if you are looking for a new career challenge in one of the remotest cities in the world, Perth could be just the place for you. With new projects starting every day in WA, it could also be the fresh start your career needs. It is evident that work opportunities will be in abundance for those who possess the right skill set and experience.
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