Giant shed opens doors
A BIG truck and trailer repairer needs a big shed, and they don’t come much bigger in Townsville than Recar’s refurbished premises at the Bohle.
Recar’s 6500sq m shed on a 3.2ha property at 646 Ingham Rd, acquired last year for $ 3.5 million, was officially opened last week by Townsville councillor and transport industry identity Pat Ernst.
While the refurbishment is largely complete, more works are planned in a $ 1 million remake of the property, where around half of the area is available for lease.
The premises previously were a factory for steel reinforcing and fencing manufacturer ARC.
Recar’s owners, managing director Bob Jones and his son, general manager Cameron Jones, were in the city to see progress on the workshop and attend the Townsville V8 supercars event.
Recar is Australia’s largest privately owned network of vehicle repair centres, acquired by Melbourne- based panel beater and one- time supercar driver Bob Jones in 2005.
The Jones family has also developed the former Recar emergency response service into a separate company called ISS First Response, providing emergency response services and response plans to the heavy vehicle and transport industry around Australia.
Cameron Jones, an accountant, said the company had undertaken much of the work to revamp the Townsville premises themselves, removing dividing walls to open up the shed and cutting and relocating some of the structures to erect a truck washbay.
A large spray painting booth has been relocated from Recar’s former Townsville premises and three overhead cranes have also been installed.
A specially designed truck crush pit, used to straighten damaged and twisted chassis, has been installed deep into the warehouse floor and is believed to be the biggest of its kind in North Queensland.
Bob Jones, who formed panelbeating business CarTrek in the 1970s just two weeks out of completing his apprenticeship, said they had spent a lot of time acquiring the skills to run both businesses.
They were now an industry leader with their own TAFEapproved heavy vehicle trades course. He said they had invested about $ 15 million over the past five years, mostly in acquiring property for the business.
The Townsville acquisition completed plans to own all of their Australian workshops and would be the best heavy vehicle repair centre in Australia, serving most of regional Queensland.
“Our philosophy has been to buy our own property so we can control our destiny,” Mr Jones said.
With the Townsville premises he said they were raising the bar further, lifting their efficiency and levels of equipment.
Nationally, across both businesses, they employ about 300 people.
ROOM TO MOVE: Recar managing director Bob Jones and general manager Cameron Jones in their new workshop at 646 Ingham Road, Bohle.