Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers, Auction Facility, Geelong

TGM was originally engaged to provide structural and hydraulic design dervices for the Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers (RBA) auction facility in Geelong. In October 2011 RBA decided to restart the project with TGM providing additional services, civil engineering and project management, including tender documentation and evaluation.

Two buildings were constructed, the auction building which contains the administration centre as well as a 600 seat theatre to view equipment as it is driven past on an external raised ramp. Approximate auction building area is 2,490m2. The second building is the check-in building (314m2), used as a control point for inbound and outbound delivery of auction items.

Project Management: As part of the recommencement of Ritchie Bros, TGM took over the full project management of the project. TGM played the lead role procuring the design and construction, reporting directly to Ritchie Bros in Vancouver, Canada.

Civil Engineering: After appointment TGM had approximately 1 month to provide detail designs for the site, these were based on an aerial photograph showing the new locations of the buildings. One of the biggest challenges was sourcing the required pavement material as the civil works makes up approx. $2.5M of the total project cost. During construction the site proved to be challenging as the natural and imported local material had a high california bearing ratio (CBR) when dry, however when wet its strength was minimal. During the course of pavement construction this was an issue with many softs spots which required additional excavation or geotextile.

Due to the tight timelines to complete the project in early December 2012 rain delays and wet ground were an ongoing issue.

To complicate matters, there were underlying rock at approximately 1,200mm below the surface, requiring the sewer and stormwater trenches to be dug using a rock breaker.

Structural Engineering: The auction building required three large column free areas for which TGM designed a series of three bay steel portal frames exceeding 30m clear span. The front wall of the central section of the auction hall has a 30m wide and 7m high glazed sliding door suspended from a clear span steel truss supporting the doors and tracks, sound and visual display equipment providing the gallery audience with live proceedings of the auctions. The check-in building has a steel wall stud and domestic roof truss system providing a simple and economical solution to the structure for this building.

TGM also designed a highly specialised plant wash facility building for the development which provides segregated washing for various pieces of plant. This building is a steel framed structure with in ground concrete channels and pits.

Project Team

Ben Johnson

Project Manager

Lara De Klijn

Civil Engineer

Chris Marshall

Planning Manager, Regional Victoria / Principal

David Rendle

Geospatial Manager Geelong / Licensed Surveyor

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