The SWQ Branch kicked off the 2017 IPWEAQ conference program with ‘crossroads to resources’ held in the country town of Dalby, 2-3 March 2017. Thank you to our host council, Western Downs Regional Council (WDRC).
The conference was opened by Mayor Paul McVeigh who welcomed 127 delegates and exhibitors and it was pleasing to see a high number of our younger upcoming engineers and Technical Officers in attendance and presenting papers. Our branch conferences play a vital role in their professional and career development.
Papers were presented on regional projects, and potential excellence award winners including the Toowoomba City Hall Auditorium and Annex project (Ashlee Adams, YIPWEAQ Deputy Chair) and the Kingaroy Wastewater Treatment Upgrade (Nerida Airs).
Aaron Meehan delivered a pivotal paper on change management and how to ‘future fit’ an organisation. At some stage, all councils, corporations and associations like IPWEAQ, come to a critical crossroad when widespread change is essential in order to secure a sustainable future.
Digital disruption is dramatically changing the organisational landscape at an ever accelerating pace and we learned from Randall Makin of RedEye WFM that companies that are able to capitalise on disruptive technologies and digital transformation are extracting value while others fall behind.
The team from McCullough Robertson delivered papers on innovation in contract tendering (Ren Nieman) and proposed changes to how projects are administered (Matt Bradbury).
Geoff Bartholomew of Lions Systems provided delegates with a history of IPWEAQ’s ADAC (Asset Design As Constructed) schemer and its application and benefits to councils. Councils across Australia are able to join the ADAC consortium to participate in the future development of the schemer. Please contact Ross Guppy, IPWEAQ’s Director, Technical Products to learn more about ADAC and how to become involved.
Another speaker from the host council, Leigh Cook presented a paper on managing infrastructure needs during rapid economic change with particular emphasis on resource sector impacts.
IPWEAQ has recently developed a working relationship with a cooperative agreement pending with the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator (NHVR). The NHVR is responsible for the administration of Performance Based Standards (PBS) with Kerry Plater delivering a presentation on these Standards at the Dalby conference.
Product updates were presented by IPWEAQ Partners: Wagners (Joe Ash) on innovative fibre composite solutions for pedestrian bridges and EME2 pavement and mix design (Dr Laszlo Petho, Fulton Hogan).
The conference dinner was another highlight for delegates with renowned Queensland magician, Matt Hollywood Holland, unwillingly assisted by Graham Cook followed by local musicians. A number of delegates braved the heat for a traditional round of IPWEAQ golf Friday lunchtime following the conference close.
Branch President's Report continued ...
A huge thank you as always to IPWEAQ’s valued corporate Partners who made the journey with us to Dalby and a thank you also to our conference sponsors: Brandon & Associates, GenEng Solutions Pty Ltd, McCullough Robertson Lawyers, Shepherd Services, King & Company Solicitors, PBS and Instrada. Our Partners and sponsors bring an immeasurable value to our events showcasing the latest products, knowledge and technology which helps our members deliver best practice projects for our communities.
Thank you to all who attended and a special thank you to our entertaining hosts from Western Downs, Graham Cook, Aaron Meehan and Tobias Burwood, as you can see from the photos, they put on a good show.
SWQ Branch President