ES firm to build Muchea saleyards

31 May, 2006 08:45 PM
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THE WA Meat Industry Authority (WAMIA) has appointed Dubbo-based Atlex Stockyard designers to build the Muchea saleyards.

The stockyard design company confirmed this week that they had been appointed to design the yards. Completion date is June 2007.

WAMIA expects a design to be available for industry consultation within two months.

Atlex was responsible for designing the $3.9m Horsham Regional Livestock Exchange in 1998 that has a capacity of 2000 sheep and 600 cattle.

It was built the Horsham yards and has managed and operated the facility in two separate contracts since, with an average turnover increase of 60pc a year.

The company's website says that Atlex is the market leader and arguably the most advanced designer, innovator and manufacturer of sheepyards in the world.

The company has also been responsible for upgrading the Armidale saleyards (NSW), Bairnsdale regional saleyards (Victoria) and Dubbo regional livestock centre (NSW).

A spokesman for Adelaide-based saleyard designer Huefner and Associates said its design firm had been responsible for the preliminary work and concept design for the Muchea yards, but was notified on Monday that it had not won the bid for the final design.

WAMIA acting chief executive officer David Saunders said he hoped the design would be completed within two months, and site work should start in October.

Mr Saunders said the authority wanted to incorporate ideas from yards in the east into the Muchea design.

He said Muchea would not be just a saleyard but a comprehensive livestock-selling centre.

Options for the facility include a stud stock selling centre and a venue for the Magic Millions thoroughbred sale.

Mr Saunders said important aspects of the design were a good stock flow, ability to work stock easily, sufficient space to hold stock before and after the sale and Occupational Health and Safety requirements.

The land for the Muchea site was expected to be bought outright by next month. Mr Saunders said WAMIA had the option on the block so they could not lose it.

Mr Saunders said the June 2007 completion date was a realistic one because the project was getting to the point where concrete plans were being implemented.

But there were always external factors that could delay the process.

While some people expressed concerns about the Muchea site becoming surrounded by housing - as did the Midland site - Mr Saunders said it was unlikely.

The Muchea site was allocated by the Department of Planning and Infrastructure for industrial use.

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