Featured in The Fifth Estate: Hickory puts up six-storey prefab apartment block in record time

Hickory Group has put up an prefabricated 77-unit, six-storey apartment complex in South Hedland, Western Australia, in just eight-and-a-half days.

Using 108 prefabricated modules built in Hickory’s Melbourne factory and transferred to the WA site by road and sea, the $26 million Concorde South development has slashed typical construction time.

“Our integrated structural building system accelerates onsite and offsite construction programs by up to 50 per cent, and provides a real solution to the issues of quality, affordability, materials and skills shortages that often prevent regional development projects getting off the ground,” Hickory managing director Michael Argyrou said.

The company said it was committed to providing quality, sustainable developments for regional Australia, and also providing manufacturing jobs. Hickory has more than 450 staff, with many of the prefabrication personnel coming from the depressed Victorian manufacturing sector.

“Unlike imported modular construction products, the Hickory System is an Australian made construction system that does not have set sizes, building heights or layouts,” Mr Argyrou said.

“We can adapt to complex architectural designs that make a positive contribution to the skyline while having a minimal impact on the environment.

“The Pilbara region has been very supportive of our technology, which uses a unique delivery system that creates construction opportunities in the Pilbara as well as manufacturing jobs for displaced auto-workers in our Melbourne factory.”

Port Hedland Mayor Kelly Howlett said the apartment was a welcome addition.

“The town is excited to see another transformation happening in South Hedland and the construction of the new apartments will only add to the amenity and vibrancy of the South Hedland Town Centre, helping us to achieve our vision of becoming a regional city,” Ms Howlett said.

The Concorde South project is being delivered in partnership with developers AcierMaximus Australasia and Gold Star Consulting.

Agents Hedland First National have been appointed to sell the apartments, which offer a mix of one, two and three bedroom layouts.

By Cameron Jewell, The Fifth Estate, 18 June 2014 

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