Redfern Terrace


Redfern Terrace, 36 Caroline Street, Redfern NSW – Make Safe and Building Repairs – City of Sydney Council, Project Delivery Service Brookfield GIS

36 Caroline Street is a former terraced house maintained by the City of Sydney Council in The Block area of Redfern. The house is on the corner of Caroline and Hugo Streets and is the only house remaining from a row of terraces that has been demolished. Currently, the house has community murals on its walls and the work Murphy’s is carrying out is part of a longer-term plan to convert the use of the building to a community art space.

Due to its age and condition, the building needed remedial works and Murphy’s were contracted to complete these for the Council. The scope of works included removal and replacement of the metal roof, replacing the roof and ceiling timbers, re-pointing the brick work, re-toothing the corners of the brickwork and rendering the exterior wall.

Before the work began, it was confirmed through an independent occupational hygienist and NATA laboratory testing that the interior of the building was contaminated with dust containing high -levels of lead. One of the first work tasks was to decontaminate the inside of the building. Murphy’s issued a Lead Risk Work notification to SafeWork NSW and made sure the work was carried out hygienically, using a HEPA filter vacuum and wet-wiping to remove the lead dust while workers wore type 5 disposable coveralls, disposable gloves and respirator masks.

Across the varied work to be completed, one of the chief hazards was working at heights. Murphy’s used a scissor lift and mobile scaffolding to control the risks of falling and worked with the project delivery service BGIS to implement a permit to work system.

On the first floor of the building, an existing ceiling was beneath the roof timbers being replaced. On further testing by the hygienist it was confirmed this ceiling consisted of asbestos containing cement. Following a notification to SafeWork NSW Murphy’s removed this under licenced and controlled conditions, with workers wearing disposable asbestos removal PPE and the removed materials being disposed of at an officially licenced facility for the disposal of asbestos waste.

The existing roof timbers had a scant framework and were in poor condition. Murphy’s own trade qualified carpenters and roofers removed the structural members progressively and replaced them with new treated pine. This was high risk construction work as the work was at heights of above 2m. Murphy’s controlled this risk through the use of mobile scaffolding and temporary work platforms. The roofing timber frame work was completed to the design of the client’s structural engineers who then inspected and certified the construction on completion.