Demolition target for 2016 increases to 350 houses

Released 29 July 2016

The Asbestos Response Taskforce today released an updated Indicative Demolition Schedule revising the targeted number of Mr Fluffy demolitions from 200 to 350 this year.

Head of the Taskforce Mr Andrew Kefford said the target reflected the current efficiency of the demolition program and was good news for former owners seeking to return to communities to rebuild.

"Today’s information release is the third public update of the Indicative Demolition Schedule which shows the spread and extent of our activity as we work to remove the legacy of Mr Fluffy from our community," Mr Kefford said.

"A total of 604 properties are currently scheduled for demolition between now and 2018 and as at today 270 properties have already been safely demolished across 37 suburbs.

"The increase in demolition capacity will be welcome news for many former owners seeking to return to remediated blocks to rebuild as well as neighbours as it enables physical as well as psychological rebuilding to occur in suburbs free of loose fill asbestos."

The schedule shows the number of affected, demolished and scheduled houses by region as well as at a suburb level. A progress map which shows progress of this work has also been published.

Mr Kefford said a key to the progress was the close engagement with industry, as well as the drive for efficiency and innovation as contractors undertake this important work.

"We currently have eight active head contractors working on the program and 10 demolitions are occurring on average each week. At any one time there are 100 or more workers across the sites," Mr Kefford said.

"In addition, innovations and improvements in demolition methods have supported the efficiency of the program as it matures - such as the order and sequencing of works.

"The scheduling work itself also supports efficiency of the program through grouping houses for demolition by suburb which has minimised the disruption to communities and enabled greater coordination of works."

Informing neighbours and the community of activity remains a key focus of the Taskforce.

This includes letter box drops, community information events as well as door knocking in areas with clusters of affected properties.

"Members of the Taskforce are regularly engaging in affected areas ensuring neighbours have information and confidence in the work underway," Mr Kefford said.

"The Taskforce has knocked on more than 700 doors and contractors undertake additional direct engagement with neighbours. The Taskforce also regularly hosts information activities, including one tomorrow (Saturday) for residents in the Charnwood area as our work continues.

"What has been demonstrated to date is that houses are being demolished safely, effectively and efficiently and there is a high level of confidence not only in the demolition work, but in the repurchase of remediated blocks."

The next scheduled indicative demolition update is expected before the end of 2016.

Statement ends