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Building a
connected and

Year in Review 2022-23


This year, NSW Public Works (NSWPW) supported nearly 2,000 projects in every corner of our state for more than 300 government agencies and councils. Across almost every asset class imaginable, we helped rural, regional and metropolitan communities realise the benefit from the state and federal governments' colossal wave of investment. We also supported them to recover and get back on their feet following horrible natural disasters. 

Our evolving whole-of-asset lifecycle services and early strategic planning advice assisted clients to get things done, and build and manage more sustainable portfolios. The mix of these capabilities, combined with our strengthened digital team, and our core procurement and project management groups, unlocked incredible outcomes for our clients and helped progress a number of critical governmental and departmental priorities.

Drew Varnum signature

Drew Varnum, Executive Director NSW Public Works

Portrait of Drew Varnum

Our impact

Building a better way of life for the communities we live and work in.

projects in 2022-23

asset classes

social procurement spend in whole of government contracts (July 2018–June 2023)

of regional grants assured

worth of infrastructure

customer satisfaction achieved

Note: figures on this page may have been rounded off.

Projects across NSW

NSW Public Works is NSW’s central infrastructure advisory and delivery agency. In 2022-23, we worked across approximately 125 local government areas (LGAs).

NSW Public Works projects per LGA

Thinking differently

Bringing deep design, engineering, procurement and project management know-how to complex community problems and projects, wherever in NSW our help is needed.

Case study
Rapid delivery of health housing exceeds expectations

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Location: Hunter New England and Riverina Western regions

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Client: Hunter New England and Western NSW Local Health Districts

housing units

sites in regional NSW

NSW Public Works used agile and flexible procurement, together with local contractors and offsite manufacturers, to quickly deliver quality housing for health workers as part of the NSW Government’s Regional Housing Package. 

In the Hunter New England region, NSWPW delivered 44 accommodation units across 12 health sites within 18 months (from design to install). The architecturally designed modular units were built off-site—at the same time as the sites were prepared—then transported to the sites, providing an efficient construction method.

In the Riverina Western region, NSWPW will deliver 20 units across eight sites, focusing on cost-effective construction to maximise the available budget. 

The two approaches have exceeded client expectations by providing comfortable and well-equipped accommodations, attracting skilled staff and enabling longer stays.

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The project has been an enormous success. We surpassed our expectations.”


Connie Matthews, Facility Planner, Hunter New England Local Health District

Related content

Wide shot of a pod village

11 housing villages built in Northern Rivers 

NSW Public Works and partners constructed 11 temporary housing villages with 546 dwellings in less than 12 months, leveraging our experience in delivery and procurement. 

Electrical team working on powerline

Smart management of electrical designs saves $26 million in Cooler Classrooms rollout

As part of managing the $500 million Cooler Classrooms Program, NSWPW led the electrical design works, saving millions by optimising high voltage designs and negotiating reduced scopes.

Water security

Partnering with more than 30 councils and local water utilities to develop long-term water security solutions, and provide regional communities with secure and drought resilient water supplies.

Case study
Restoring flood-damaged water and wastewater systems

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Location: Northern Rivers

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Client: Reconstruction Authority/Northern Rivers Reconstruction Corporation, Water Infrastructure NSW

projects in stage 1

projects in stage 2

After the devastating floods in the Northern Rivers area in early 2022, a preliminary assessment revealed significant damage to water and wastewater infrastructure on the NSW North Coast. 

To aid recovery and enhance flood resilience, a program was initiated, led by NSWPW in partnership with the NSW Reconstruction Authority/Northern Rivers Reconstruction Corporation, Water Infrastructure NSW, and local water authorities. 

Working closely with local water authorities, NSWPW undertook preliminary inspections and assessments of damaged infrastructure and conducted emergency repairs during Phase 1 of the program.

Phase 2 focuses on recovery and long-term flood resilience, with an expected completion date of 2026, subject to funding. It encompasses projects nominated by eight councils, aiming to repair, replace, and improve critical infrastructure affected by the floods and safeguard against future flood events.


It’s been a collaborative effort to deliver these projects, which will provide real resilience to Northern Rivers communities into the future.” 


Aidan Macqueen, Senior Program Manager, NSWPW

Related content

Malpas Dam view from hill

Securing Armidale’s future water supply 

NSW Public Works is undertaking the investigation, concept, and detailed design for a major augmentation of the Armidale water supply scheme, which will secure a better water supply for the Armidale region for decades.

Workers pouring concrete into excavated area

Nyngan water storage to minimise drought impacts

Two water storages with a combined capacity of 1400ML were delivered by NSWPW and partners, exemplifying our technical expertise and experience.

Workers working on dam

Dam upgrade secures water for Bathurst region

To meet growing water demands and enhance resilience, NSWPW delivered the complex and challenging Winburndale Dam upgrade, bolstering its capacity and safety.


Using advanced tools to enhance collaboration and project efficiency, supporting progress on the NSW State Infrastructure Strategy and its associated Infrastructure Digitisation Roadmap.

Case study
3D model transforms design process for Tomakin Sewage Treatment Plant

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Location: Tomakin, NSW south coast

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Client: Eurobodalla Shire Council

NSW Public Works (NSWPW) is managing the upgrade of the Tomakin Sewage Treatment Plant project in collaboration with Eurobodalla Shire Council. 

A key element of the project is the development of a comprehensive 3D model that encompasses the existing features of the site and the proposed underground infrastructures and underground utilities such as stormwater drainage, water, and electrical systems.

Implementing 3D engineering design helps identify site constraints, minimises variation orders, and increases the likelihood of completing projects within the allocated budget and schedule. NSWPW is now applying this digital methodology to similar projects, improving outcomes and efficiencies.

Related content

Man using VR headset

Using cutting-edge digital methods to enhance project outcomes

By continuing to invest in advanced technology, people and processes, NSWPW is leveraging digital engineering to enhance design precision, collaboration, and project delivery.

3D model of sphinx

3D tech vital to manage ageing assets 

NSW Public Works took detailed 3D captures of Wollongong Cenotaph and Sphinx Memorial in Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park, supporting efforts to fully restore the ageing assets.

Man using surveying equipment in police station

Digital mapping enables design process for heritage restoration 

NSW Public Works undertook a 3D laser scan survey of the former Darlinghurst Police Station, supporting the design process for its future restoration and conversion into a museum.  

Lifecycle management

Assisting clients to plan, maintain, renew and optimise assets to ensure they can continue serving the evolving needs of the community.

Case study
Protecting life and property from flooding in the Hunter Valley

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Location: Hunter Valley

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Client: Department of Planning and Environment (DPE)

people benefitted

NSW Public Works has collaborated with DPE to plan and manage construction repairs to the Hunter Valley Flood Mitigation Scheme, an infrastructure project to bolster flood resilience in the region. 

During a major flood event in 2022, NSWPW collaborated with partners to quickly repair a catastrophic levee failure by developing an innovative de-watering system. The emergency response teams worked tirelessly to restore the damaged levee, preventing further damage and safeguarding local communities. 

NSW Public Works has been instrumental in the ongoing maintenance and improvement of flood mitigation infrastructure, ensuring the Hunter Valley is better equipped to withstand severe weather events and protect its 250,000 residents and assets.

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NSW Public Works added value by introducing innovative design solutions, including a dewatering methodology based on past project experience. This provided a rapid response to start reinstating the levee.” 


Dino Baita, Regional Programs Manager,

NSW Public Works

Related content

3D model of heritage building

Assessing buildings to guide future repairs and use

NSW Public Works has evaluated the condition of more than 500 buildings at more than 90 sites owned by Crown Lands, providing updated asset data to support future maintenance. 

Photo of the front of teacher housing

Filling a housing gap for teachers and police in regional NSW

Since 2018, NSWPW has been constructing, acquiring, and refurbishing teacher and police housing, with a commitment to use local suppliers to benefit communities.

Activating regions

Building a better way of life for the regional and rural communities where we live and work.

Case study
“It’s magnificent”: Tweed community embraces Northern Rivers Rail Trail

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Award winning project
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Location: Murwillumbah

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Client: Tweed Shire Council

shared pathway

users in first four months

The Tweed section of the Northern Rivers Rail Trail is a 24 km shared pathway from Murwillumbah to Crabbes Creek, offering a scenic route with 26 bridges and two tunnels. 

The project, funded by the NSW and Australian Governments, was successfully delivered by NSWPW in cooperation with Tweed Shire Council, Hazell Bros, and stakeholders. Collaboration was key to overcoming project challenges, including major flooding events, and engaging with local landholders.

The award-winning rail trail has been well received by the community. In the first four months after its opening on 1 March 2023, more than 70,000 people used the rail trail, far exceeding expectations.

Related content

Ariel view of Parkes SAP

Enabling the development of business hubs across NSW

Skilled and experienced acquisition managers oversee land and easement acquisition negotiations for the Regional Growth NSW Development Corporation, supporting progress on the Parkes Special Activation Precinct.

Exterior photo of Bay Pavilions

Award-winning Bay Pavilions marks a new model for sustainable community facilities

NSW Public Works and partners delivered an aquatic, arts and leisure centre in Eurobodalla, using an innovative design to reduce construction costs and drive visitor spend.

People watching the Zig Zag Railway

“It’s magic”: Restored workshop sparks Zig Zag Railway revival

NSW Public Works project managed the refurbishment of the Zig Zag Railway workshop, providing a secure space for staff and enabling the iconic railway to operate at full capacity.


Fostering the growth of our 500+ staff across 20 offices and actively sharing knowledge within the industry, cultivating a culture of continuous learning and innovation.

Case study
Challenging and rewarding career options attract and retain talent

In 2022-23, NSW Public Works supported more than 175 internal advancements and new starters this year, including a significant inflow of junior staff with new skills and enthusiasm. The business is providing purposeful work, professional pathways, and work/life balance.

NSW Public Works delivered a progressive environment for staff, who benefitted from exposure to emerging digital engineering and construction practices, smart infrastructure, and large-scale sustainability initiatives. 

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For me, it’s about leaving a legacy for the future generations to enjoy a more sustainable, adaptable, regional NSW. Doing this, while still building up my career and professional reputation in the industry, is a great feeling.” 


Adam Monaghan, Senior Project Manager,

Coffs Harbour

Related content

People in stadium, smiling

Building networks, sharing knowledge

NSW Public Works sponsored and participated in key industry events and conferences, facilitating the exchange of expertise and nurturing valuable collaborations.

Female staff member taking selfie in front of building work

Meet our women engineers, architects, and scientists

Women’s achievements are recognised and supported at NSWPW, contributing to a diverse workforce, and enabling women to grow their careers.


Supporting clients to deliver on and stretch their sustainability ambitions and targets.

Case study
Schools benefit from renewable energy in pilot program

Smart Energy classroom edits
A 45Kw PV array installed at Killara High School (Sydney) as a part of tranche 2 of the Smart Energy Schools Pilot Program.
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Location: Selected schools across NSW

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Client: School Infrastructure NSW

schools with solar and battery storage systems

of schools' energy needs met

Solar arrays and battery storage systems have been installed on 61 NSW schools (over two tranches) through the Smart Energy Schools Pilot Project, supplying up to 50 percent of the schools’ energy needs. NSW Public Works leads the work as part of the Cooler Classrooms Program funded by School Infrastructure NSW.

In the next phase, the project will install the systems on 18 more and test two energy management devices to find the best technology to turn a selection of schools into virtual power plants (VPP). The VPP will allow the schools to use the solar for their energy needs, to charge the battery and to export and import energy to the grid. This enables schools to buy low and sell high, creating advantages for NSW schools and beyond. 

Related content

Aerial photo of rooftop solar at Tamworth Hospital

Greening healthcare: Partnering for sustainability in the Hunter region

NSW Public Works is the sustainability infrastructure delivery partner for the Hunter New England Local Health District, delivering 2,900kW of rooftop solar across 22 sites since August 2022.

Exterior of Western Sydney Startup Hub

Revitalising spaces in a cultural precinct: Western Sydney Startup Hub

NSW Public Works managed the procurement and delivery of a 5-star Green Star refurbishment to a collection of 1800s buildings, creating a reimagined space.

Harvesting sandstone from Sydney CDB

Harvesting sandstone from Sydney CBD to repair historic buildings

The Minister’s Stonework Program uses sandstone sourced locally, from dug-out carparks in Sydney CBD, reducing transport costs and minimising environmental impact.


Blending traditional artisanship with modern digital techniques to safeguard our cultural assets.

Case study
Minister’s Stonework Program enters its 4th decade

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Location: Across NSW

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Client: Government Architect NSW

properties restored

30 yrs
of Minister's Stonework Program

The NSW Government looks after more than 800 heritage sandstone buildings and structures. Through the Minister’s Stonework Program (MSP), NSWPW helps government agencies to repair and enhance the state’s valuable stone heritage assets. 

Since its inception in 1993, the program’s annual expenditure has grown from $4 million to around $30 million. The program has restored around 200 properties, including libraries, galleries, bridges, seawalls, forts, fountains, and sculptures. NSW Public Works manages the program, while construction services are delivered by the Heritage Stoneworks team operating from the Government Architect NSW’s office within the Department of Planning and Environment. 

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Now in its fourth decade, the Minister’s Stonework Program has cared for metropolitan and regional assets, enabling continuing service to communities state-wide."


Abbie Galvin, NSW Government Architect

Related content

Callan Park gates reopen after award winning restoration

Callan Park gates reopen after award-winning restoration 

NSW Public Works led the revitalisation of the historic Callan Park gates constructed in 1878, bringing back the gates’ landmark qualities to the delight of park users.

Ultimo Tafe building undergoing repairs

Ultimo TAFE building repaired to protect its rich heritage

The 1893 building was beautifully restored to its former condition, prolonging the life of its external façade.

National Art School wall brought back to life

National Art School wall brought back to life

NSW Public Works meticulously restored the Forbes St Wall at the National Art School, preserving its historical significance while ensuring its structural integrity.


Harnessing the power of government contracts and construction projects to deliver industry diversity, and local contractor outcomes.

Case study
Reducing blood lead levels in Broken Hill children

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Location: Broken Hill

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Client: NSW Environment Protection Authority

houses completed during the 10-year program

Over the past decade, NSWPW and partners have successfully managed the Lead Abatement Program in Broken Hill, reducing blood lead levels in children under five. 

Broken Hill’s mining history spans over a century, with the adverse consequences being the deposition of lead in local soils and residential areas. Increased exposure to lead is linked to various health issues, particularly learning difficulties in young children.

Working with the NSW Environmental Protection Authority and the Broken Hill Environmental Lead Program, NSWPW’s involvement in the program includes replacing or capping contaminated soils, encapsulating lead-based paint in residential properties, and sealing internal ceiling joints to prevent lead-contaminated dust build-up. 

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NSW Public Works is improving the health of our community by drawing on local knowledge and past experience managing lead abatement programs."

Paul Theoharidis, Project Manager,
NSW Public Works

Related content

Award winning staff

$243 million spend on social procurement in whole of government contracts 

NSW Public Works achieved a $243 million social procurement spend from July 2018 to June 2023, including $197 million in Aboriginal participation and $46 million in disability participation.

Pods constructed by inmates

Inmates fit out 165 units for Northern Rivers temporary housing

Following the 2022 floods in the Northern Rivers, NSWPW partnered with Corrective Services Industries, the commercial arm of Corrective Services NSW, to solve an urgent need for temporary housing for flood-affected residents. 

Response and recovery

Leveraging our agility and deep technical expertise to restore critical infrastructure, ensuring safety in crises and supporting communities to recover and rebuild with resilience.

Case study
From disaster to hope: Rapid housing efforts support Eugowra’s recovery

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Location: Eugowra

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Client: NSW Reconstruction Authority

pods installed since early 2023

properties demolished since early 2023

NSW Public Works worked with local councils and partners in Eugowra to provide temporary housing for residents affected by the devastating November 2022 flood.

The NSW Reconstruction Authority initiated the Pods on Private Property Program, which involved placing pods and caravans on private properties to provide temporary accommodation. NSW Public Works led the project, leveraging resources and expertise from the Northern Rivers flood recovery efforts. 

The collaboration resulted in a quick rollout, with more than 80 pods installed and 17 houses demolished in the first seven months. The program offers residents a chance to rebuild and regain normalcy, with overwhelmingly positive feedback from the community.

Related content

Staff on the ground after an earthquake

Supporting Türkiye earthquake search efforts

Two NSWPW employees joined Australia’s Disaster Assistance Response Team as specialist engineers, providing structural advice for the Türkiye earthquake response.

Disposing of beehives as part of Varroa mite outbreak response

Disposing of beehives as part of Varroa mite outbreak response

NSW Public Works collected and disposed of more than 12,500 honeybee hives, supporting the state-wide response to eradicate the Varroa mite disease.

Image of part of the Greens Road reconstructed

Greens Road restored in complex engineering feat

In partnership with Hawkesbury City Council, NSWPW led a challenging engineering project to reconstruct 715 metres of flood-damaged road in Lower Portland. 

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