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Westfield Chermside Shopping Centre
North Australian Contracting
25,000m2 USG Boral 13mm plasterboard and compounds
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Westfield Chermside is a large shopping centre complex ideally located for around a third of Brisbane’s population, just 10 kilometres north of the CBD. With some of Australia’s top retailers as tenants – David Jones, Myer, Harris Scarfe, Big W, Kmart, Target, Coles, Woolworths and Apple – it also includes a cinema complex.
In mid-2017 the opening of a $355 million redevelopment saw Chermside become the largest centre in the Scentre Group’s portfolio, with the addition of 33,000 square metres of retail space. The 95 new retail stores it now houses include Brisbane’s first Sephora – plus H&M, Zara and other local and international brands. The extension also includes a resort-style landscaped leisure and dining area featuring boutique cafes and al fresco restaurants.
Scentre Group contracted with North Australian Contracting (NAC) to construct the ceilings and partitions in the redevelopment. Much of the extension is located on a new floor above the existing retail area – and one of its outstanding features is a ‘curved’ ceiling.
NAC director Danny Simpson said the curved effect was a challenge to overcome. “We used small segments of plasterboard and the effect of glancing light creates the illusion of a continuous curve. Certainly an interesting way to achieve the effect! It involved a high level of detail and lots of joins, but the end result speaks for itself.”
“Getting finished on deadline was going to be tight, and we were working double shifts towards the end. But we got there in time.” - Danny Simpson, Director, North Australian Contracting
A typical requirement of shopping centre redevelopment projects is that construction work must not interrupt the day-to-day operation of the existing retailers. Access for deliveries and material storage are often very limited – with contractors struggling to keep supplies up so their teams can keep working on schedule.
The large increase in retail and dining space for Westfield Chermside meant that massive amounts of plasterboard and compounds of various types were required. Fortunately, NAC was able to accept large deliveries as materials were able to be stored in the new upper storey. “One of the challenges of this project was the sheer volume of the board we needed. USG Boral’s delivery was good – they kept up with the quantity we needed. And the quality of their products was just as you’d expect.”
Another challenge on projects like Westfield Chermside is hard deadlines for completion – with retailers and shoppers keenly anticipating the gala launch of exciting new stores. Danny Simpson said, “Getting finished on deadline was going to be tight, and we were working double shifts towards the end. But we got there in time.”
“One of the challenges of this project was the sheer volume of the board we needed. USG Boral’s delivery was good – they kept up with the quantity we needed. And the quality of their products was just what you’d expect.” - Danny Simpson, Director, North Australian Contracting