East Gippsland Shire Council: Operations Depot

Mar 10, 2013 by     Comments Off    Posted under: Capital Projects Over $1M

Following a review of how East Gippsland Shire Council delivers its physical services to its rate payers and visitors Council resolved to move from external contracted service providers to in-house works teams in the areas of Parks and Gardens, Tree Maintenance and Waste Transfer operations.  This resulted in an additional 30 outdoor staff together with 45 existing Operations staff plus the necessary plant and equipment having to be accommodated in a new purpose built depot.  As a result, a modern, energy efficient and sustainable facility has been constructed at Bruces Road, Kalimna which is the subject of this IPWEA Awards nomination.

Project Description

The move to in-house works teams was undertaken to improve the quality and responsiveness of the nominated physical services provided to the community.   A recent review indicates that this has been achieved to a high degree.  As part of this process it was also decided to combine all infrastructure management and maintenance staff of Council’s Operations Department into a single location to maximise efficiencies of service delivery across all areas of Council’s infrastructure. Therefore, the depot had to accommodate the needs of indoor and outdoor staff as well as plant and equipment.
The mix of outdoor staff covered existing signs and structures crew, concrete crew and carpenters plus the new parks & gardens, tree maintenance and waste operations staff.
To achieve this required an extensive and modern new depot built to a sustainable, leading edge standard on a “green fields’ site.
The concept plans (see Appendix A) and subsequent detailed construction plans were prepared in-house and approved for the construction of an office building, amenities building, workshops building and covered truck bays. This was achieved together with the construction of access roads, staff and plant parking areas, refuelling facility and the provision of service utilities at a cost of $2.235 million (excluding land purchase of 2.5
The project was managed by Council’s Senior Works Coordinator, Mick Veldhuizen, and consisted of the use of sub-contractors for earthworks and road pavement construction, pavement asphalting, steel work, tilt slabs, plumbing, electrical and heating / air conditioning services.
The extensive concreting and carpentry works were undertaken by Council’s (existing) inhouse crews (see Appendix B for under construction photographs) Works commenced in July 2011 and the depot became operational at the beginning of June 2012.

The initial earthworks were impacted by ongoing heavy rain events the results of which were managed by temporary sediment fences and traps. Once these passed and the project was “out of the ground” works progressed relatively smoothly.
To ensure the desired environmental and sustainable credentials of the project were met the following features have been included in the project: -
• Water harvesting of rainwater from the various roofs for use in toilets, gardens and the truck wash bay;
• The use of LED lighting in the workshops;
• The use of motion sensor lighting in the other buildings;
• The use of bio-diesel as the only fuel of choice provided by the refuelling facility;
• Solar hot water service to the amenities building;
• Double glazing to the office building resulting (in part) in the building’s energy efficiency meeting the requirements of Part J. of the Building Code of Australia;
• Sewerage is treated to a Class C standard via two septic tanks and a sand filter prior to spray irrigating on to pasture by East Gippsland Water.
• The site’s stormwater from hard paved areas discharges onto grassed pasture before finding its way into nearby water courses resulting in the removal of anypollutants before doing so; and
• Three Geothermal Heat Pumps (provided by Ausgeothermal) are used at the office building to provide heating / air-conditioning and hot water. This system utilises the heat from the earth, via a total of 12 earth bores to 30 metres depth, where the temperature is a constant 15 degrees and uses that energy to provide heating and cooling.


This nomination is more one of a corporate / team nature with the construction of the depot reflecting the efforts of many individuals and departments within East Gippsland Shire Council.
However, special mention must be made of the project manager, Mick Veldhuizen, who not only supervised but coordinated and managed the sub-contractors and Council staff who worked on the depot’s construction.
Mick also investigated and implemented many of the environmental and sustainable initiatives referred to in this nomination.


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About the Awards

Welcome to our website profiling the top submissions in this year's IPWEA Victoria Awards for Excellence. The award categories are: Capital Project Awards, Innovative Practice/Service Delivery Award, and Asset Management Award.