Image – Canva.
  • New skills centre opened in North East Melbourne
  • Includes opportunities for engineering and construction trades, and more
  • Fitzgerald Road level crossing to be removed by 2023

Today, the Victorian government has opened the North East Link Skills and Jobs Centre. Located 20 kilometres away from the CBD, the centre is set out as a ‘one-stop-shop’ to connect locals to the 10,000 jobs that are available on the North East Link project.

The centre invites walk-ins and is able to provide Victorians with opportunities across the fields of engineering and construction trades, traffic management, conservation land management and administration.

Victoria’s government said:

“At least 10 per cent of the construction hours on these projects will be completed by apprentices and trainees,”

Victorian government statement

To date, the state said 64 opportunities have been afforded to apprentices, trainees and cadets, thus far completing more than 70,000 hours of work on the North East Link project.

This comes as the narrative of tradie shortages continues.

HomeBuilder commencement deadlines were extended to ensure Australians wouldn’t have to foot the build (if you’ll excuse the pun) and it seems both state and federal measures to increase tradie numbers have now made some impact.

Nationally, 8.3% more Australians commenced a trade than in 2019, and of that percentage, 11.9% took up a construction trade.

That 11.9% works out to 21,600 joining the construction industry, however, that number is down from 2017 where 22,400 commenced a construction trade.

Fitzgerald Road Level Crossing

A new road bridge to replace the crossing has commenced construction with the digging of foundations.

The level cross removal will be completed by 2023 and is expected to reduce travel times by 45% during the morning peak.

The Mt Derrimut Road level crossing will also be removed, with completion expected by 2024. The move will mean the Geelong and Ballarat lines will be level crossing free between Deer Park and the city.

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