Aged Care

Carmelite Construction Complete – Leading The Way In Retirement Living

Carmelite Retirement Living Complete External Entry

with Senior Project Manager, Robert Maiolo

Southern Cross Care are leading the way for retirement living in South Australia with Sarah Constructions recently completing their new Carmelite development. Located in Myrtle Bank, the 5 level, architecturally-designed facility includes a mix of premium retirement apartments on the top levels, moving down to residential care suites plus a range of facilities and services on the lower levels. This integrated style of aged care accommodation, combined with a state of the art facilities, will set the new benchmark for retirement living in Adelaide.

The project, at over $50 million is a flagship facility for Southern Cross Care. The last time we reported on progress from Carmelite, the building was nearing the Top Out stage. To understand the steps involved to bring this new development to life, we sat down with Sarah’s Senior Project Manager, Robert Maiolo, to gain his insights from the last 12 months of construction.

“After Top Out was completed, the next major phase involved works being carried out across the external facades. In order to access the multi-levels of the main tower, we erected significant perimeter scaffolding. The scaffolding presented a major programming consideration, as it blocked access to a large degree of outside areas; we addressed this from the outset through detailed scheduling and logistics management.

External Scaffolding at Carmelite


As we were cladding the facades, we were also working on completing the balconies, this included waterproofing, floor tiling, cladding and soffit. Balcony design and construction was a key client focus, so the project team spent a lot of time, making sure that the detailing was robust.

Internally the focus shifted to first fix services works and the partition contractor (ceiling and linings) taking a lead role in shaping the internal fit out. The high level of coordination required for this process was established through BIM modelling undertaken at the front-end of the job. This paved the way for limiting potential issues on site with any clashes between services and made for a smoother construction process. The priority for the role-out of first fix services was within the tower working from bottom up, in sequential order.

With the completion of first fix services, we then moved through with the final finishing trades which included tiling, joinery, second fix, carpentry, carpet, vinyl, painting and hardware. To set the benchmark for quality and ensure premium finishes throughout all of the rooms, we established prototype rooms for both the apartments and aged care suites. This enabled us, the design team and the client to visually review the set-out, final selections and level of finish. We worked really hard as team, to ensure a superior level of detailing and high quality finish throughout.

Finished Apartments At Carmelite

The final stage of the project, once the scaffolding was removed was to move through external landscaping and civil trades. This process required tight coordination and sequencing of external works to ensure the completion of works within a compressed time frame. To achieve this, we identified the key trades involved, then through regular liaison and working collectively together we were able to deliver to schedule.

New Benchmark In Retirement Living

External Landscape Area at Carmelite


Completing a large project of this scale requires a cohesive team effort. At anyone time there was up to 195 people working on site, to make it successful, we all needed to focus on delivering results for the client. From my personal perspective, I was really proud of how the team came together, pitched in and supported each other to get the job done to a high standard. It was a significant and complex project to manage, for me there was a strong focus to manage relationships and overall project delivery.

It was with pride, that we delivered Southern Cross Care, 8 weeks ahead of schedule a new premium building featuring residential apartments and aged care suites, plus state of the art facilities to support the health and well-being of residents” said Robert.

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