Innovative engineers and engineering projects that are building Queensland’s future have been recognised at the Engineers Australia Queensland Engineering Excellence Awards. Leading the way in building and construction is Australia’s largest health and infrastructure development completed to date.

The $1.76 billion Gold Coast University Hospital (GCUH) project, entered by the GCUH Engineering Joint Venture (Aurecon and Jacobs), was awarded an Excellence Award in the Building and Structures category. According to Engineers Australia, it is a “vital component in Gold Coast Health’s vision to deliver state-of the-art health facilities designed to cope with the anticipated population growth in South East Queensland”.

The team drew on a breadth of engineering knowledge to complete specialised projects, including the 2.4 m thick concrete radiation bunkers and a helicopter landing pad with a system of channels filled with aluminium filings to prevent spilt fuel from catching fire.

GCUH was also recognised at the Australian Institute of Architects’ Queensland awards, with architects HASSELL, PDT and STH receiving a commendation for Public Architecture.

GCUH. Images: Christopher Frederick Jones. Source: HASSELL

The $360 million Richlands to Springfield project by TrackStar Alliance was this year’s winner of the RW Hawken Award.

Also taking out an Excellence Award in Project Management, the transport infrastructure project required a range of engineering techniques and expertise to deliver a range of amenities.

Image: Thiess

This includes 9.5km of electrified dual-track passenger rail line, two new stations at Springfield and Springfield Central, seven rail bridges, over 1.5km of elevated rail structures including an 815m-long viaduct, and a 5.5km Centenary Highway upgrade.

Dr Burt Look, a geotechnical engineer with over 30 years of professional engineering experience, was named the Queensland Professional Engineer of the Year. He was praised for having introduced many innovative testing procedures and designs to not just Queensland, but Australia.

“It was excellent to see a range of high-calibre projects and individuals recognised in each of the categories,” said jury chair, Stuart Lister.

“With such great engineering minds working on innovative projects, Queensland has a bright future ahead of it.”

Category winners

R W Hawken Award - Overall Project Winner

Richlands to Springfield - TrackStar Alliance

Building and structures

Gold Coast University Hospital - GCUH Engineering JV (Aurecon and Jacobs)


New Parallel Runway: Phase 1 Civil Works Package - BMD Constructions and Brisbane Airport Corporation

Industrial development and manufacturing

AXIS-33 Mobile Elevated Working Platform - Practical Engineering Australia

Project management

Richlands to Springfield - TrackStar Alliance

Project infrastructure under $50 million

Resilient Infrastructure - Don Tallon Bridge Emergency Response - Department of Transport and Main Roads

Project infrastructure over $50 million

Cairns Bruce Highway Upgrade - BMD Constructions

Research, development and innovation

Modular On-Site Cyanide Production Unit for Gold, Silver and Base Metals Industries - Synergen Met Pty Ltd

Individual winners

Queensland Professional Engineer of the Year

Dr Burt Look

Queensland Engineering Technologist of the Year

Errol Milevskiy

Queensland Engineering Associate of the Year

Jarrod Pettigrew

Queensland Young Professional Engineer of the Year

Michael Vollbon

Queensland Young Engineering Technologist of the Year

Andrew Wilson

Queensland Young Engineering Associate of the Year

Luke Chaczko