Building the new wave of great places

How do we build the best places? Innovative designs, smarter technologies and quality finishes are all part of the package – but cultural change is central, agreed a panel of experts building great places.

Matt Billingham, head of real estate at Turner & Townsend, set the scene with an overview of cost escalation forecast for Australia. “Despite increased uncertainty and volatility, we’ve seen growth in construction activity and increase in prices,” he said.

Josephine Sukkar AM, Buildcorp Group’s principal agreed that “subbies are less prepared to take on unsustainable risk profiles”.

Simonne Bailey, JAHAMA Group’s managing director in Australia, pointed to the building quality issue capturing media attention, in which “cladding was lumped in with cracking”. She said there was an opportunity for those delivering quality product to help the entire supply chain to “rise above it”.

“Quality cannot be controlled if it isn’t designed,” added WoodSolution’s program development manager, Paolo Lavisci. Sukkar said her company had developed an app to enhance quality, but argued that the “biggest changes” occur “when your people embrace change”.