News from SA - August

John Held , 21 August 2017

30 years of ACA – SA. John Held outlines current work, and reviews the last year of advocacy and action.

Welcome to new members

We are pleased to welcome new members to ACA and report both an increase in member numbers and the total number of staff employed in those offices – we hope this reflects slightly better business conditions in South Australia!

Happy Birthday ACA!

Last week marked the 30th anniversary of ACA in South Australia. It is over 50 years since its predecessor, the SA Practicing Architects Association, was formed, and it’s interesting that many of its founding members are still active in ACA – SA.

A number of our committee joined the National  Executive Committee for dinner last weekend as part of the NEC’s two-day meeting in Adelaide, at which we welcomed new National President Kieran Wong and farewelled outgoing President Steve Kennedy.

STEM Works Program – Novation Deeds

The ACA is pleased to advise that, in conjunction with the Australian Institute of Architects, we have successfully negotiated with DPTI to leave the Novation Deed for Design and Construct STEM projects in its original format.

The revised Deed issued recently, in our opinion, sought to remove DPTI from sharing responsibility for the design information transferred to the Contractor at novation, with the LPSC (subcontractor) solely responsible (and providing a warranty) for the design carried out to that point. In the context of the STEM process, this would have left the LPSC in a vulnerable and isolated position should there be any dispute as to the appropriateness of the finished project. Given the speed of the STEM rollout, the lack of development of STEM Pedagogy with educators (School Principals, Senior Teachers), the significant direction and design input from DPTI (Initial briefings, design reviews, standards etc.) and the complexities around the procurement methodology, the potential for this outcome represented a significant risk to our members. In our opinion, the inclusion of DPTI as a contributing partner to the design outcome significantly mitigates this risk.

This outcome is testament to what we can achieve when we work together as a profession, and we thank the members who have contacted us for advice and stood firm in their insistence that the contract conditions should not be changed.

Tendering Guidelines

The MBA/ACA/Institute liaison group has recently completed a thorough revision of the Tendering Guidelines, which will be released shortly. We have found much common ground in working towards an orderly approach to procurement and contracting.

Other issues being discussed include

  • STEM Works Procurement
  • discussions on defects and completion
  • discussion on ethics in tendering and particularly behavior of architects
  • recognition of relationship between fees and quality of documentation

Keith Neighbour Study Group

There are currently 17 study group members sitting for their written exams this week – we wish them all the best, and thank Chris Tan Consulting for their continued support.

The year in review

2016-2017 has been another busy year.  We thank the committee, and in particular our Executive Officer, Sascha Byrne, who has enthusiastically risen to every challenge. This year she has also gained a national role as National Projects and Membership Coordinator. Thanks, Sascha!

Other highlights include

  • Working with the Institute and Consult Australia on submissions for DPTI prequalification and contract changes for AS4122-2010
  • Implementing a new type of Learning Environment Opportunity Study for DECD
  • Meeting with AIA on future collaboration
  •  Providing Input into DECD STEM program including
    – Survey
    – Legal advice on novation deeds
  • Coordinating the Practice Administrator’s group which met regularly during the year
  • Jointly hosting a seminar with Institute by James Legge on Melbourne’s Nightingale housing projects
  • Roundtable with Ian Nightingale on Local Content
  • Roundtable with ESD consultants
  • Lunch with Michael Corrigan
  • Discussions with Minister for Small Businesses and departments re red tape, etc
  • Issuing of guidelines for roof access
  • Financial training for ACA committee members (to comply with Registered Organisations legislation)
  • Offering White Card training courses

John Held is ACA – SA President, and a Director of Russell & Yelland.