News bulletin 9 -->
News bulletin 9 --> 9 Mar 2021

A new recycling technology that is turning plastic bags into a sustainable alternative to aggregate for  concrete has been developed by RMIT University, RED Group and Replas and is being used in a supermarket development in Melbourne (pictured).

A developer in New Zealand's healthcare sector says construction costs have risen so high that one company is considering contracting services to Australia. According to Vital Healthcare, one hospital's construction cost blowout totalled NZ$16 million, with costs are going up much faster than Australia.

Also in NZ, house builds are reaching levels that "are continuing to defy gravity", according to one economist, with 11,291 new dwellings approved in the December quarter, exceeding a 1973-set record. Meanwhile in Australia, the Ai Group and HIA PCI eased by 0.2 points in February 2021, showing construction is continuing.

An ageing timber bridge at Awaba will be replaced as one of 400 earmarked for replacement under the NSW Government’s $500 million Fixing Country Bridges program. Round 2 applications will be offered later this year.

Infrastructure is widely anticipated to lead the global post-pandemic recovery and the sector can expect "serious competition on access to skills, assets and the supply chain", according to infrastructure consultants Pinsent Masons.

The first graphene-enhanced concrete will be launched into the US market in April 2021. The material is the result of collaboration between UK-based Advanced Division of Thomas Swan and Concrene.