16 March 2022

Defence opportunities in the Top End

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Construction is ramping up on a range of capital infrastructure works and supporting projects developed under the banner of the United States Forces Posture Initiative (USFPI) in the Top End. 

Project owner, Territory-based construction company Sitzler, is using ICN Gateway to call for registrations on interest in the $711 million project, targeted to be completed mid-2026. 

All Defence projects must have a Local Industry Capability plan to ensure local suppliers can take part in the work packages. 

Sitzler has been engaging with local industry through briefing sessions held in Darwin, Palmerston, Katherine, Timber Creek, Kununurra and Alice Springs.  

According to a Sitzler press release, the company is committed to increasing opportunities for Aboriginal businesses within Defence. They have invited small Aboriginal businesses to register interest in flexible and accessible ways, including one-to-one meetings to showcase capability and interest in the project.  

As a local industry champion, Sitzler is committed to maximising local industry and Indigenous participation and will continue to communicate via the ICN Gateway platform throughout the course of the project.  

A significant joint investment by the Australian Governments, the project includes upgrading and expanding existing facilities at Robertson Barracks Close Training Area, Kangaroo Flats Training Area, Mt Bundey Training Area and Bradshaw Field Training Area. 

This includes: 

  • Aircraft parking aprons; 
  • aircraft maintenance and support facilities; 
  • fuel storage; 
  • accommodation upgrades; 
  • physical fitness facilities; 
  • kitchen and messes and 
  • upgrades to training areas and ranges. 

 The scope of work includes: 

  • decommissioning some facilities and ranges; 
  • upgrading existing training area facilities; 
  • construction of new range controls, firing ranges, obstacle courses, aircraft landing sites, vehicle wash points, camp and medical facilities; 
  • new roads and upgrades to existing roads; 
  • new services infrastructure and upgrades to existing services; 
  • new heavy-duty hardstands. 

As of early 2022, 4,043 registrations of interest have been submitted, with 72% from Northern Territory businesses.   

“This planned investment represents a generational change in the way the ADF and our partners will conduct land combat training,” the Department of Defence’s Colonel Len Rouwhorst said in the Sitzler press release. 

“Delivering these modernised weapon ranges on our key northern training areas will ensure Defence can meet the objectives of the 2020 Force Structure Plan and maintain its competitive advantage with world-class military training and simulation.” 

The project is part of a significant increase in government spend on Defence projects, which according to the Chamber of Commerce NT and Master Builders Association NT, will see $572 billion invested over the next decade.   

Established in Darwin in 1976, Sitzler has grown from a northern Australian construction company to a national construction specialist, delivering largest and complex projects across the country. 

ICN NT encourages local companies with capability across a broad range of products and services, to register their interest on the project’s Gateway Page.  

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