The announcement by the NSW Government of the contract for the Berry to Bomaderry Highway Upgrade has been welcomed by the Illawarra Business Chamber as not only good news for the local economy, but a great opportunity for local jobseekers.
The contract for the $450 million project has been awarded to a joint venture between Downer and Seymour Whyte, which will begin construction on the 10.5 km road upgrade in mid-2018. The project is planned to be completed in 2021.
The further upgrade of the Princes Highway between Wollongong and Nowra will be welcomed by local businesses and motorists alike, and importantly, it will see local jobseekers given preferential access to traineeships and apprenticeships on the project under the NSW Government’s Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program.
The Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program is designed to leverage the state’s infrastructure investment to offer opportunities for local workers through specific training and employment targets. Currently, the program is operating at the Sydney Metro project, the Lismore Base Hospital Stage 3B redevelopment and the WestConnex new M4 project.
Illawarra Business Chamber Executive Director Adam Zarth said that he had received confirmation from the NSW Government this morning that the Berry to Bomaderry Upgrade would qualify for the program, and that a training hub would be up and running from this July.
“This is great news for Illawarra jobseekers as the Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program will ensure workers from the surrounding area are targeted for training and employment on the Berry to Bomaderry Upgrade project,” said Mr Zarth.
“This program is being piloted on other major infrastructure projects in NSW and aims to ensure 20 per cent of trades positions are made up of apprentices and 20 per cent of the total workforce is made up of trainees and workers needing to update their qualifications. It also provides set targets for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, women and young people under 25 years.”
“In addition to this, we want to see Illawarra construction and logistics companies first through the door to subcontract to the successful joint venture contractor on this project,” he said.
More information about the Infrastructure Skills Legacy Program: https://www.industry.nsw.gov.au/business-and-industry-in-nsw/assistance-and-support/infrastructure-skills-legacy-program