PICS SHOW DANGER: Builder suspended over units’ deep cracks

WORK has halted at a Gold Coast apartment building site after the state's construction watchdog stepped in over concerns about its impacts on a neighbouring unit block.

The Queensland Building and Construction Commission has suspended the licence of Arundel-based builder Groupline Constructions over building work on the Coolangatta project.

It came after engineers inspected the nearby Kirra Vista apartment block on Musgrave Rd at Coolangatta, warning three units were so badly damaged they must be immediately evacuated.

Damage to the unit block includes load bearing walls developing deep cracks of about 10mm wide.

The QBCC has suspended the licence of Gold Coast builder Groupline Constructions over building work which caused cracks in the neighbouring apartment block. Photo: Supplied
The QBCC has suspended the licence of Gold Coast builder Groupline Constructions over building work which caused cracks in the neighbouring apartment block. Photo: Supplied

In one of the damaged units, cracks have developed in a rendered brick wall behind a fridge, in the bedroom, beneath a window sill and cornices have separated from the walls.

The outer veneer of a wall has also moved about 30mm.

Engineers have found that while there had been some earlier damage to the building, it had worsened since building started on the neighbouring site and there was little doubt the recent distress had been caused by the neighbouring construction work.

Groupline was contracted earlier this year to build the neighbouring Maya development at 1 Coyne St, Coolangatta overlooking Kirra Beach.

The Maya development at Coolangatta. Photo: Groupline Constructions
The Maya development at Coolangatta. Photo: Groupline Constructions

The $10 million development will be eight levels high with two levels of basement carparking, according to its website.

A QBCC licence search shows the company's builders licence was suspended on Wednesday.

It has a licence to work on major projects of up to $30 million in cost.

A QBCC spokesman said the suspension was due to safety concerns at a Gold Coast construction site.

One of the cracks in the neighbouring building.
One of the cracks in the neighbouring building.

"A unit block adjacent to the construction site has been determined by an engineer to be unsafe due to movement of the building," the spokesman said.

"On 13 November 2019, the QBCC received a report from an independent engineer commissioned by the QBCC, that included recommendations that work on the site should stop due to concerns with the integrity of one of the external walls of the unit block.

The cracks extend right down the wall.
The cracks extend right down the wall.

"The engineer recommended a number of mitigation steps, including that construction at the adjacent building site should cease, and that other rectification should occur."

It has proposed conditions that would force the company to engage an independent engineer to investigate what corrective action needs to be undertaken.

The residents have been forced to evacuate.
The residents have been forced to evacuate.

If the QBCC accepted the plan, the builder would then need to engage contractors to complete the rectification work at its cost, before work could resume on the project.

Groupline Constructions could not be reached for comment by The Sunday Mail, with its business line not in operation.

The cracks were on load-bearing walls.
The cracks were on load-bearing walls.

The Gold Coast City Council, meanwhile, has issued two compliance notices to the body corporate of Kirra Vista in relation to the structural damage.

A council spokesman said it was contacted by the QBCC yesterday "in relation to further matters at this property and the neighbouring site and the city is investigating."

Work on the Maya development has halted. Photo: Groupline Constructions
Work on the Maya development has halted. Photo: Groupline Constructions