John Holland: Biggest Construction Companies in Australia


CareerSeekers, john holland, Melbourne Airport, metro tunnel,


The company John Holland was founded in 1949 by Sir John Holland under the name John Holland & Co. As an engineering and construction company, it won its first major civil engineering project in 1950, the construction of a water treatment and power station plant at Australian Paper Manufacturers at Fairfield, Victoria. Over the next thirty years, the company delivered the new Parliament House in Canberra and the Sydney Entertainment Centre. The company operates in Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia.

John Holland partners with CareerSeekers, a non-profit social enterprise that works with leading employers to create paid professional internship opportunities for young refugees or asylum seekers. The CareerSeekers program breaks down barriers to employment for mid-career professionals seeking to reignite their careers in Australia, and provides employment pathways for refugee university students.

John Holland is active in infrastructure, property development, rail and building and delivered the following projects:

Melbourne Airport Main Runway Widening


The works included widening the main 3.7-kilometre long runway by 15 metres (7.5 metres either side), upgrading the entire runway lighting and guiding system, replacing 60 runway slabs, and installing a series of stormwater and drainage systems. As a result, in May 2005 Melbourne became the first airport in Australia with the facilities to land an A380 Airbus. The project cost $27 million.


2004 -2008

This $2.5 billion project was Australia’s largest road infrastructure project delivered in a joint venture with Thiess.

John Holland constructed:

  • 88 bridges
  • 45 kilometres of new free-way
  • twin 1.6-kilometre tunnels
  • 17 interchanges
  • over 35 kilometres of continuous bicycle and pedestrian paths
  • two major bypasses (the Ringwood Bypass and the Dandenong Southern Bypass) which eliminated 45 sets of traffic lights and reduced traffic congestion on local roads in the Melbourne metro region.

This project won multiple awards including the 2008 Project of the Year –  National Infrastructure Awards, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia.

Airport Link M7 & Northern Busway


The Airportlink M7 is a 6.7km twin tunnel in the northern suburbs of Brisbane connecting the Clem7 and Legacy Way tunnels (via Inner City Bypass) to the Brisbane Airport and Australia TradeCoast precinct.

Delivered in a joint venture with Thiess, the $4.8 billion Airport Link Project comprised the concurrent construction of three major infrastructure projects in Brisbane’s north:

  • the Airport Roundabout Upgrade – the  replacement of the old signalised roundabout with a 750-metre Airport Flyover, linking the East West Arterial with Airport Drive, and a high capacity “fast diamond” intersection
  • Northern Busway  – the three-kilometre Northern Busway featuring eight new bus stops, two busway stations, and 1.5 kilometres of busway tunnel between the suburbs of Windsor and Kedron
  • the Airport Link M7 motorway

This project won multiple awards owing to its innovative approach becoming the largest road tunnel cavern in the southern hemisphere.

Melbourne Level Crossing Removal

2015 – 2016

As part of an Alliance (John Holland, KBR, VicRoads, Public Transport Victoria, Metro Trains Melbourne and the Level Crossing Removal Authority), the company undertook the work for the Burke Road, North Road, Mckinnon Road and Centre Road Level Crossing Removal Project.

The works included:

  • removing the level crossings by lowering the rail lines
  • reconstruction of local stations
  • improvements to the road and public transport connections

Metro Tunnel Early Works

2016 – 2018

The Metro Tunnel Early Works package included:

  • The relocation of power, drainage, gas, water, sewer and telecommunications services to clear the alignment prior to the Main Works commencing in 2018.
  • The construction of two access shafts in Franklin Street and A’Beckett Street to enable future construction of the stations.
  • Major site preparation works including land clearing, property demolition, temporary relocation of monuments and tree protection and removal across all precincts.

About Metro Tunnel

The $11 billion Metro Tunnel will create a new end-to-end rail line from Sunbury in the west to Cranbourne/Pakenham in the south-east, with high capacity trains and five new underground stations.

The Metro Tunnel will comprise:

  • Twin nine-kilometre rail tunnels from the west of the city to the south-east as part of a new Sunbury to Cranbourne/Pakenham line
  • New underground stations at Arden, Parkville, Domain and two new CBD stations directly connected to the City Loop at Flinders Street and Melbourne Central stations
  • Train/tram interchange at Domain
  • High capacity signalling to maximise the efficiency of the new fleet of High Capacity Metro Trains.

The Metro Tunnel is on track to be completed by 2025.

West Gate Tunnel

The project is a partnership between the Victorian Government and Transurban and will be built by construction contractors CPB Contractors and John Holland (CPBJH JV).

The tunnelling works will include:

  • Twin tunnels under Yarraville between the West Gate Freeway and the Maribyrnong River
  • Entry and exit portals where the tunnels connect with surface roads
  • Ventilation structures at each tunnel exit to remove air from inside the tunnels
  • Walking and cycling paths on Hyde Street, Harris Street, Maribyrnong Street and a bridge over Whitehall Street
  • New landscaped open space in Altona North and Footscray
  • Freeway Management System to support good traffic flow and safety
  • Tunnel safety features for smooth operation of the tunnel, including automatic detection for over-height trucks, fire systems and emergency access and exits.

West Gate Freeway works will include:

  • Extra lanes on the freeway between the M80 Ring Road and Williamstown Road
  • Entry and exit portals where the tunnels connect with the West Gate Freeway
  • Ventilation structure at the tunnel exit to remove air from inside the outbound tunnel
  • Interchange upgrades at the M80 Ring Road, Millers Road, Grieve Parade and Williamstown Road
  • Ramps to Hyde Street to connect trucks directly with local industry
  • Noise walls to reduce traffic noise for residents and open spaces
  • Walking and cycling paths to complete missing links in the Federation and Kororoit Creek trails and better connect communities, including new overpasses over Williamstown Road and Stony Creek
  • Pedestrian bridges replacing the existing overpasses
  • Freeway Management System to support good traffic flow and safety
  • New open spaces and planting thousands of trees and other plants in the freeway area.

Port to City works will include:

  • A bridge over the Maribyrnong River to connect the tunnels with an elevated road above Footscray Road
  • Ramps to the port at MacKenzie Road and Appleton Dock Road for direct freeway access
  • Elevated roadway connecting to CityLink, Dynon Road and Footscray Road, running above the centre of Footscray Road
  • Walking and cycling paths for quicker and safer cycling to the city with a new veloway and bridges over Footscray Road and Moonee Ponds Creek
  • Wurundjeri Way extension and widening – an extra lane in each direction and extending Wurundjeri Way north to Dynon Road to create a city bypass
  • Freeway Management System to improve traffic flow and safety
  • New open spaces and planting thousands of trees and other plants in the freeway area.


January 2021

John Holland will remove five dangerous level crossings in Melbourne’s north and deliver three new stations as part of the Victorian Government’s Level Crossing Removal program.

July 2021

John Holland is set to commence early works for Stage 3 of the Gold Coast’s largest ever infrastructure project, Gold Coast Light Rail.


John Holland and CPB Contractors will design and construct part of the Western Harbour Tunnel (WHT) project in parallel with the existing Rozelle Interchange works.

John Holland Graduate Program

Source: John Holland

Source: Rail Projects Victoria

Source: Level Crossing Removal Project

Source: West Gate Tunnel Project

Source: Metro Tunnel

The John Holland story – celebrating 70 years – feature-length film

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