One of the most challenging aspects of our recent work on the APA Gas Mains Renewal Program in Adelaide has been the variety of stakeholders we have had to work with.
The project on Area N in and around Rundle Street required insertion work and a pressure upgrade to 7 kpa, along with replacing the low pressure cast iron and steel gas mains in order to secure the gas network. This was made more challenging by the fact that we had to work in conjunction with a wide variety of stakeholders, in addition to a busy Adelaide CBD location and traffic management demands.
The work also had to be carried out during the height of the Covid-19 lockdown, with some of it located around the Pullman Hotel, a primary quarantine site. In addition, Rundle Street is one of Adelaide’s busiest shopping and dining precincts, and so we needed to work in collaboration with large scale property owners the Maras Group, individual restaurant and bar owners, Adelaide City Council, as well as other stakeholders.
One of the reasons we were so successfully able to negotiate this complex work environment, with only limited excavation being required and therefore minimal disruption to traffic and business, was through using an intrinsically safe live gas mains inspection camera. This is not a commonly used piece of equipment in Adelaide, and so exemplifies our approach to modern methodologies and providing innovative solutions.
We also employed a large diameter pipe handler attached to an excavator, which is designed to grip a pipe, position it and then insert it without the need for manual handling. This equipment improves safety and efficiency, and significantly contributed to there being zero incidents for the duration of the project.
Overall, despite the many challenges posed by this project, our collaborative approach with Downer, APA and all stakeholders involved, as well as our proven project management skills and expertise in a wide range of gas infrastructure upgrade work enabled us to complete the work on budget and ahead of schedule. Since the completion of the project, we have received hugely positive feedback from the many stakeholders involved.
In a relatively short time, Metro Utility Excavations has established itself as a trusted partner in the delivery of gas infrastructure upgrade projects in Adelaide, and as a result we are now further expanding our operating capacities.
Key to this is our newly instituted collaboration with Downer as its preferred sub-contractor. Initially, we were contracted by Downer to undertake critical works on the Semaphore Augmentation project, where we were required to replace 2 km of low pressure cast irons mains with new 90mm polyethylene high pressure pipeline, and install a large district pressure regulator.
The success of delivering the Semaphore Augmentation project then rolled into the successful delivery of the challenging Adelaide CBD Area N Mains Replacement project.
In addition, we are now in the position of being able to contract directly to APA for projects awarded via the Minor Works Panel in our own right, while continuing to operate as a sub contractor to leading service providers on the Major Works Panel.
To better enable us to meet this constant and growing demand for our services, we have now mobilised additional crews and resources, which has further enhanced our skills base and our ability to deliver innovative infrastructure upgrade solutions.
An important factor in our growth has been the hugely positive feedback we have received from a variety of stakeholders with regard to our delivery on a number of major projects in the Adelaide CBD and across the metropolitan area. Our project management skills, experienced workforce and collaborative approach to working have all contributed to our growing reputation, and are key factors in our positive partnership with Downer and the continued expansion of our operations.
Metro Utility Excavations is delighted to have been awarded a significant amount of work as part of the APA 2020/21 HDPE Gas Mains Renewal Program in Adelaide.
The projects involve approximately 24 km of HDPE gas mains renewal in Belair, Hawthorndene and Coromandel Valley, replacing yellow plastic gas mains originally installed in the 1980s and 90s. These were three packages that we targeted in the tender process, and so the company is naturally extremely pleased that our work and reputation continues to be viewed so favourably by APA.
Metro Utility Excavations will be undertaking the work in collaboration with Downer as the principal contractor. This continues our burgeoning relationship as Downer’s preferred sub-contractor, and is a testament to our recent success in completing a range of projects in complex environments.
The work is expected to be completed by the end of June 2021, and gives Metro Utility Excavations growing confidence in our potential to expand further in the near future.