Wednesday, November 16, 2011

BDAQ membership fees made easy for 2012

The BDAQ management council has considered the current economic times and the state of the building industry in Queensland when setting the membership fees for 2012. 

The decision has been made to reduce the fee for the full member category and to hold the student, associate and corporate fees at the 2011 level.  There is also a range of easy instalments plans for members to make it as easy as possible for those members doing it tough to retain their membership. 

BDAQ is only asking that some commitment is made before the due date of 1 January 2012. 

All the details are on your membership subscription invoice. If you haven’t received yours by November 30 please contact the office on 07 3889 9119.


The 2012 Queensland Building Design Awards are officially underway with the launch of the Regional Awards Entry Form. 

If you have designed a project that you are proud of, don’t keep it to yourself. This is your chance to share it with the rest of the world. 

In 2011, BDAQ ramped up its media release program and achieved some excellent coverage for the design awards right across Queensland. You can become part of that and get promotion worth thousands of dollars for nothing more than the entry fee. When you make it through to the state awards, you are guaranteed to get at least a photo of your project and your contact details into the glossy magazine sold in newsagencies all over Queensland. 

We have made some changes to the awards procedures this year to simplify the process. The key points to note are as follows.
1.      There will be no branch design awards coordinators in 2012. The Design Awards Coordinator for all regions is Russell Brandon (contact details see p5 of the Entry Form).
2.     All submissions regardless of the branch of origin will be submitted to the BDAQ office. Should branches wish to conduct their own judging, they will need to coordinate their judging with the awards coordinator.
3.      We are now requiring one set of photographs only but have clarified the required resolution and file size range.
4.     Winning entries will automatically proceed to the state awards judging. The original presentation submitted to the regional awards will be used in the state judging. There will be no separate state awards entry form and no opportunity to change entry submissions between regionals and state awards. The awards coordinator may choose to judge the state awards at the same time as the regionals are judged. Regional award winners will be automatically invoiced for the state fees.
5.     You will notice that the Environmental categories and Product categories are no longer listed on the entry form. All entries submitted are eligible for these categories and the judging will be based on points awarded during the category judging. 
 6.     We have clarified the rule about re-entering projects that have previously won an award to permit projects which have previously won a category to be entered into a different category in subsequent years. For example if you have previously won a residential category, you can now enter the same project in the residential interiors category. Also we have removed the restriction on projects which have been awarded a commendation to be re-entered in any category. 

You’ve got to be in it to win it. Why not give it a go this year but don’t put it off, start planning now. If you have any queries, please contact the office on 07 3889 9119 OR DOWNLOAD THE FORM HERE


1 January 2012 is fast approaching and as well as ushering in a brand new year, this 1 January sees the commencement of the new harmonised Workplace Health and Safety legislation in Queensland. The Act will require building designers to consider the health and safety of people who work in, on or around the buildings they are designing. 

The major difference in this legislation with regard to the existing Queensland legislation is that there is no exemption of any class of building. 

In regard to designers of buildings the current Act states;
structure does not include a structure that is a class 1a building or an associated class 10a building.”

The new legislation contains no such exemption and also makes it clear that the designer’s obligations for health and safety of people apply to a building, part of a building or change to the design of a building.

That means that houses are now included as are extensions, renovations and refurbishments of any building. A workplace is defined as anywhere where someone is employed to do any type of work. So the designer’s responsibility extends to persons employed to construct, maintain, extend or refurbish and/or demolish the building as well as those who work in the building, in the gardens or even on the footpath outside the building. 

The responsibility of the designer is to;
1.       identify the hazards related to working on or in the building;
2.       assess the risk posed by the hazard;
3.       eliminate or minimise the risk
4.       communicate any residual risks.

According to the Draft Code of Practice for Safe Design of Buildings and Structures;
“The WHS Regulations require a designer to provide a written report to the person commissioning the design on the health and safety aspects of the design. This report must specify the hazards relating to the design of the structure that, so far as the designer is reasonably aware:
      create a risk to persons who are to carry out the construction work, and
      are associated only with the particular design and not with other designs of the same type of structure.

The information should include:
      any hazardous materials or structural features and the designer’s assessment of the risk of injury or harm resulting from those hazards;
      the action the designer has taken to reduce those risks, for example changes to the design; or changes to construction methods; and
      any parts of the design where hazards have been identified but not resolved.”
At the BDAQ RoadShow in March 2012 we will be workshopping these requirements and providing templates and checklists to assist members to comply with the Act. We will start to roll out the material as it becomes available between now and the RoadShow to ensure that members are as prepared as possible before 1 January. 

The Code of Practice will be clear about what is expected of designers and the draft gives some clues as to the extent of consultation required.  
“While designers may not have management and control over the actual construction work they can discharge their duty by consulting, co-operating and co-ordinating activities, where reasonably practicable, with those who do have management or control of the construction work, for example by:
         providing guidance on how a structure might be constructed safely
        applying risk management processes to more traditional designs and considering whether new or innovative approaches to design will eliminate or minimise risk and result in an intrinsically safer building or structure
        providing information of any identified hazards arising from an unconventional design to those who will construct or use the building, and
        carrying out the above in association with those who have expertise in construction safety.”
This will be an important change to how building designers carry out their work and the March RoadShow will be important training for every member. You should program it into your 2012 diary now to ensure you don’t miss out. 

In the meantime building designers should be including time for research, consultation and reporting in every quote prepared for work to be completed after 1 January 2012.

Below are the RoadShow dates:
GLADSTONE   Mon 12 March      BOONDALL              Wed 21 March
MACKAY          Tue 13 March       SPRINGWOOD         Thu 22 March
TOWNSVILLE  Wed 14 March      TOOWOOMBA          Fri 23 March
CAIRNS             Thu 15 March       HERVEY BAY           Wed 28 March
DARWIN           Sat 17 March        SUNSHINE COAST   Thu 29 March

Put yours in your 2012 Diary NOW. We look forward to seeing you there.