Four months on, Opal Tower faults remain unresolved

MacroBusiness 12:30 pm on April 15, 2019

Leith van Onselen

 

Four months after cracks in Sydney’s Opal apartment tower led to residents being evacuated on Christmas Eve, around half of the complex remains unoccupied. From The ABC:

Almost half of the apartments in Sydney’s troubled Opal Tower are still vacant, nearly four months after the building was first evacuated on Christmas Eve…

A spokesperson for the tower’s builder Icon Co told the ABC it was recently given permission from the owner’s corporation — a collective body comprised of the tower’s residents — to proceed with rectification works to common areas of the tower.

The tower’s Owners Corporation said it had taken so long because it was waiting on engineering advice before giving Icon the go ahead…

Occupants were stranded in temporary accommodation after they were evacuated…

Back in February, Bronwyn Weir – the construction lawyer who last year co-authored a key industry report – said “Opal is the manifestation of a system in trouble” and “the tip of the iceberg of what’s potentially going on in buildings”, with more building failures similar to the cracks that impacted Sydney’s Opal Tower inevitable.

Around the same time, Michael Lambert – the former secretary of NSW Treasury who also reviewed building regulation for the New South Wales government – similarly warned that the defects in the Opal Tower “are likely just the tip of the iceberg”.

So, we have a systemic problem effecting possibly thousands of apartments built during the boom: