Construction is under way of a new two-storey building at Eimeo Road State School.
Construction is under way of a new two-storey building at Eimeo Road State School. Emma Murray

New school building threatened by builder's collapse

A MACKAY state school is among those to feel the pain of construction company JM Kelly Builders' collapse, with its $7.15 million project affected.

JM Kelly Builders had been hired to build a new building at Eimeo Road State School and construction began earlier this year, with the school celebrating a slab-pour in June.

But in October the central Queensland business was placed in administration, and eight of its sub companies liquidated.

Questions were raised on Monday by Shadow Minister for Housing and Public Works Michael Hart, who claimed the State Government had "gone to ground" on the issue while the Liberal-National Party was "digging for answers".

"We have no certainty around what projects will be saved and who will be responsible for fixing defects on JM Kelly buildings if they emerge," Mr Hart said.

But the building is going ahead, with the State Government now undertaking construction itself.

The Department of Education has engaged the Department of Housing and Public Works Building and Asset Services (BAS) to finish the job JM Kelly had begun.

A spokesperson for the Department of Education confirmed BAS had been appointed as replacement builder for the project.

"The Department has engaged Building and Asset Services (BAS) through DHPW to manage the completion of the project at Eimeo Road State School," the spokesperson said.

"This is in aim of supporting local contractors previously employed on the project by JM Kelly Builders to have the opportunity to continue with the work at Eimeo Road State School, should they wish to do so."

A hopeful school newsletter on November 2 outlined the process to parents:

"BAS will now work through how much work has been completed, employ contractors etc and we believe we should see workers back on site by late November. I will keep parents updated when we hear more," the newsletter says.

The school building is one of four unfinished builds at the time of JM Kelly Builders' collapse.

Ongoing projects

  • Rockhampton Base Hospital stage 1B - No contract value provided
  • Bowen Hospital and Proserpine Hospital upgrades - $5.19m contract
  • Eimeo Road State School, Mackay - $7.15m contract
  • Road works at Rockhampton Aldi site - $0.54m contract

Completed projects under defect period

  • Stanthorpe Hospital - No contract value provided
  • Mount Morgan State High School (manual arts building) - $0.6m contract
  • Rockhampton Callaghan Park, boat ramp, floating walkway and car trailer park construction - $3m contract
  • Rockhampton State High School, administration and Indigenous Centre refurbishment - No contract value provided
  • Biloela State High School, science and gym buildings - No contract value provided