The Suburban Roads Upgrade Program (SRUP), currently being delivered by Major Roads Project Victoria (MRPV), comprises several priority road upgrade projects across Melbourne.

Upgrades totalling $3B will significantly improve Melbourne’s South East and Northern Suburbs’ road operability and safety. The SRUP will improve traffic flow and travel times, reducing growing traffic pressure on the South Gippsland Highway and Abbotts Road, improving access around the Dandenong South employment hub. The project interfaces with the Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) Cranbourne Line rail corridor and several licensed services.

July -September 2019

$2.3B

Melbourne,

VIC

Agonis Resources: Lucas Barton, Daniel Harrison.

Agonis Services: Constructability, Construction and Delivery Advisory, Program, Staging Advisory, Subject Matter Expert Technical Advice.

Relevant Experience & Key Value-add Areas of Expertise:

Cut and cover tunnelling was proposed as a suitable method of construction for several road bridges on the SRUP. Agonis provided construction staging advice for cut and cover works, CFA and sheet piling, and shotcrete for retaining walls. Construction advice included complex traffic staging to allow the works to occur. This experience is relevant to the NELP where cut and cover may be a viable option for construction.

Constructability Advisory Services: We provided constructability and estimating advice services for the SRUP before going to market, during tender evaluations, and before contract award. In particular, our ability to verify the proponents’ productivity rates for asphalt laying, rock excavation, bridge beam placement, and bulk excavation per shift was valuable to assessing price, program, and delivery methods. We have the experience to verify productivity rates for the NELP accurately.

Utilities and Rail Interface management experience: The SRUP interfaces with the Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) rail corridor, Eastlink, and several licensed services. The relocation of utilities can significantly impact the program as it can take 18 months to two years to organise. Agonis liaised with service authorities to quantify the likely impact utilities would have on the program and cost. This experience applies to the NELP due to the urban construction footprint.

Agonis Group’s Role

Major Roads Projects Victoria (MRPV) engaged Agonis Group to provide constructability and estimating advice services for the south-eastern and northern packages. The scope of works for the packages consisted of several major road improvement projects from Pakenham to Craigieburn. The scope includes greenfield and brownfield road construction, bridge construction, extensive stakeholder engagement, and traffic management. The SRU planned to improve motorist and cyclist safety, local industry accessibility, and business growth. Each project was between $50M and $200M in value, with a total program value of approximately $3B. The SRU is a major Victorian infrastructure program of a similar type, scale, and nature to the North East Link Project (NELP).

Working in a client-side role, Agonis provided constructability and estimating advice services to MRPV during the following procurement phases:

  • Before going to market;
  • During tender evaluations; and
  • Prior to Contract Award, Agonis also assessed the Lathams Road Detailed Bridge Design constructability and assisted MRPV in forecasting cash flows.

Before going to market, MRPV engaged Agonis to review budget estimates and program to finalise the budget for Treasury approval. As part of these works, Agonis assessed various risks. We identified traffic management, utilities, the potential for rock in the northern suburbs, and boggy soils in Pakenham as crucial project risks. By assessing the rock analysis provided in the geotechnical report, Agonis assisted MPRV in making practical allowances for trenching. Additional cost and time due to decreased productivity rates in the budget for rock factors were allowed for in the estimates. Similarly, Agonis assisted MRPV in risk profiling boggy soils in Pakenham and making allowances for this in the budget.

The project interfaces with the Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) Cranbourne Line rail corridor and several licensed services. The relocation of utilities can significantly impact the program as it can take 18 months to two years to organise. Agonis liaised with service authorities, including South East Water, Telstra, United Energy, and Multinet, to quantify the likely impact utilities would have on the program and cost.

Aside from services related to the rail, the rail interface also impacted the program and cost. An allowance for night works was required as occupations generally occur at night to avoid disrupting train operations. Agonis also provided construction staging advice for cut and cover works, CFA and sheet piling, and shotcrete for retaining walls. Agonis also completed a high-level assessment of the traffic management required for the various construction stages.

Through this assessment, we were able to identify that MRPV would need to increase the budget estimate or reduce the scope from 14 to 12 projects to meet the budget constraints.

Agonis provided insight and critique of the RFP road works construction methodologies, traffic management, delivery model, and program during tender evaluations. We were able to inform scoring of the constructability aspect of proponent proposals against defined assessment criteria. In particular, our ability to verify the proponents’ productivity rates for asphalt laying, rock excavation, bridge beam placement, bulk excavation per shift was valuable to assessing price, program, and delivery methods. Our assessment was undertaken collaboratively with MRPV staff in a shared office space that ensured a proactive, team-first approach. Key findings were discussed regularly with MRPV during the assessment period to provide context to evaluations and identify areas where further clarification was required from proponents.

Agonis was also engaged in providing specific constructability advice for the Lathams Road Bridge Detailed Design. We identified that the Lathams Road bridge duplication over Eastlink would impact a major gas main located adjacent to the freeway. We assessed various options and provided an alternative solution to constructing a reinforced earth wall. The solution we proposed was to build another bridge span. The original detailed design would require cranes to sit on top of the gas main to work on the retaining wall. Although more expensive to construct, our solution would be safer to build as constructing another bridge span would avoid the gas main. The contractor went with this option. Before Contract Award, Agonis reviewed the program and forecasted cashflows for MRPV.

Relevant Experience

Cut and cover was proposed as a suitable method of construction for several road bridges on the SRUP. Agonis provided construction staging advice for cut and cover works, CFA and sheet piling, and shotcrete for retaining walls. Construction staging included advice around traffic management to allow the works to occur. Through this assessment, Agonis was able to identify that MRPV would need to increase the budget estimate or reduce the scope from 14 to 12 projects to meet the budget constraints.

This experience is relevant to the NELP, where cut and cover may be a viable construction methodology. As demonstrated with the SRU, Agonis can assess construction risks, including utilities, rock, and poor soil conditions. By identifying key construction risks with cut and cover works early, Agonis can ensure they are accounted for in NELP’s design, scope for packages, program, and cost estimates.

Constructability Advisory Services. Working in a client-side role, we provided constructability and estimating advice services for the SRUP before going to market, during tender evaluations, and before contract award. During tender evaluations, Agonis provided insight and critique of the RFP road works construction methodologies, traffic management, delivery model, and program to inform scoring of the constructability aspect of proponent proposals against defined assessment criteria. In particular, our ability to verify the proponents’ productivity rates for asphalt laying, rock excavation, bridge beam placement, bulk excavation per shift was valuable to assessing price, program, and delivery methods.

Our SRU experience combined with our personnel’s tier-1 contractor experience gives us the ability to verify productivity rates for NELP accurately.

Utilities and Rail Interface management experience. The SRUP interfaces with the Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) Cranbourne Line rail corridor and several licensed services. The relocation of utilities can significantly impact the program as it can take 18 months to two years to organise. Agonis liaised with service authorities, including South East Water, Telstra, United Energy, and Multinet, to quantify the likely impact utilities would have on the program and cost.

Aside from the rail services, the rail interface also had other impacts on the program and cost. An allowance for night works was required as occupations generally occur at night to avoid impacting train operations. This experience applies to the NELP due to the urban construction footprint. Agonis can provide utility service relocation and interface management advice.

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