The company has been working on the detailed design elements of the facility with the local branch of the global engineering firm GHD Engineering to ensure the facilities have the best technology and to achieve the best, most efficient, project outcomes.
The facility will be Australia's largest undercover shipbuilding facility and will be 29,000 square metres and 18-storey high.
Civmec executive chairman James Fitzgerald said, "This is an exciting day as we look forward to further growth in our business with the announcement by the Commonwealth government that Henderson has been identified as one of two suitable locations for the continuous build of naval ships and for vessel maintenance. This is cause for great optimism and reflects highly on Western Australia’s industrial capability and capacity, to which this facility will be a significant addition. The facility will allow us to increase our Henderson workforce by an extra 1,000 people, including at least 100 apprentices."
Civmec chief executive Pat Tallon said, "This diversification is a natural extension of our core capabilities. The new shipbuilding and maintenance facility at Henderson will be a significant piece of industrial infrastructure, adding a new resource to the Australian maritime landscape whilst allowing Civmec to continue to service its clients in the other sectors in which it operates."
Managing director of Forgacs Mike Deeks added, "We are excited to commence construction of our state-of-the-art shipbuilding and maintenance facility which will be large enough to house complete Air Warfare Destroyers or Frigates as well as Offshore Patrol Vessels for construction or maintenance. The building has a gross floor area of 53,470 square metres. This facility will be a huge addition to the Australian Marine Complex and is designed to be the most efficient in the world."
Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne was at the event to mark the start of construction and said there are positive signs within the industry.
"This will transform the waterfront, create jobs and help bring investment to Henderson," said Minister Pyne.
"Civmec believes the construction will create approximately 150 new jobs, which is a great sign of the confidence business has in our defence industry.
"The company says once completed the facility will house up to 1,000 workers with 100 apprentices."