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Roadside converts vacant land to COVID testing site in a week

Roadside converts vacant land to COVID testing site in a week
Yolanda Torrisi
Yolanda Torrisi
Executive Manager Corporate Affairs
August 23, 2021
minute read

The recently opened COVID-19 testing site at a vacant land site at Bedford Park in South Australia..

..brought together the best of Roadside’s leadership and team work coordinating trades, services and skills to set up this site within a week.

Roadside South Australia and Northern Territory Director Craig Woods said he was recently approached by Spotless, which holds the maintenance contract with South Australia Health, advising Southern Adelaide Local Health Network Incorporated (SALHN) wanted a drive through COVID-19 testing site set up.

“It was one of those jobs while we were in lockdown where we had to turn on all levers and make it happen. It had to start by getting work exemptions,” Craig Woods said.

“We had a rough layout of what was needed but we needed to engineer this into a solid plan. Structures, buildings, asphalt, toilet facilities including those for the disabled, starting blocks, lunch rooms, asphalting and line marking were all needed.

“It was one of those reactive jobs where we just had to think on our feet and we were basically working off a mud map and working through the solution to get the site operational.

“Getting the plumbing organised was a challenge as we had to jet line the main drains from all the dirt clogging them and which was creating flooding on the site.

“Then there was the project management of the electrics to power the site for power and data.

“The site had to have 30 tonnes of asphalt laid and also line marking needed to be applied.

“… And all of this was delivered in a week with Roadside project managing and coordinating the trades needed,” Craig Woods says.

Executive Lead Covid-19 Programs at SALHN Catherine Hughes who headed the new COVID-19 drive through testing location implementation said with the delta variant of COVID-19 being more infectious than the previous strain, they did not want to have the walk-in testing clinic within the same vicinity of a tertiary hospital.

“Setting up a drive through clinic will ensure greater uptake of people getting tested. It’s safer for us to run this stand-alone facility and not expose immunocompromised patients to people coming through for testing and who may have Covid,” Catherin Hughes said.

“We prepared a design of what we wanted. We found Craig and the Roadside team extremely responsive in what we needed and provided us the solution we were looking for. 

“The drive through testing model is a very effective use of government and taxpayers’ funds as we can see more consumers faster at a drive through. It’s produced excellent outcomes,” Catherine Hughes said.

Spotless South Australia Agency Corporate Operations Manager Robert Trimboli in a letter to Roadside said: “Not often do we get the opportunity to praise the incredible efforts our contractors put in for us on a continual basis, however I need to highlight the efforts all contractors that were involved with the construction of the SALHN Covid-19 testing drive-through.

“The brief from Southern Adelaide Local Health Network continually evolved throughout the project without flexibility on end dates but the ability for our trades to adapt and deliver was exceptional.”

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