Infracom announces Transmission Gully Interim Review panel

Infracom (New Zealand Infrastructure Commission, Te Waihanga) has today announced the Review Panel who will undertake the Transmission Gully Interim Review.

Infracom Chief Executive Ross Copland has advised that international expert reviewer Steve Richards has been appointed to lead the review on behalf of Infracom and he will be joined by two New Zealand based peer reviewers, Sir Michael Cullen and Lindsay Crossen.

"We are pleased that Steve has agreed to take the role as lead Reviewer for this important work. He brings considerable expertise to the Review, with over 25 years’ experience on major road and rail projects in Australia."

Steve Richards has said: "I am encouraged by the conversations I have held with Infracom so far they have a real desire to promote a learning culture to improve infrastructure outcomes in New Zealand."

Steve Richards will formally start the review on 12 October and the review is expected to conclude in the first quarter of 2021.

Peer Reviewers Sir Michael Cullen and Lindsay Crossen will provide assistance throughout the Review, including giving advice on New Zealand’s contracting practices and construction market.

Sir Michael Cullen said: "Infracom is in a unique position where it can look to provide independent expertise and grow the capability for how government procures and delivers infrastructure projects and I am looking forward to bringing my insights to the table to assist."

Lindsay Crossen said: "I am delighted to be part of the panel as I believe we are well equipped to provide a meaningful and in-depth assessment of the progress of the Transmission Gully project to date."

"Project reviews allow Infracom and our stakeholders to learn from the successes and challenges of real projects, delivered in real-world conditions. Infracom’s purpose is to deliver a step-change in infrastructure planning and delivery - a challenge we don’t take lightly, so we will take a keen interest in the findings of this review" said Copland.

"Projects with the scale and complexity of Transmission Gully generally produce very valuable insights and lessons for future improved project procurement and delivery. The findings are likely to help improve and calibrate risk evaluation models, business cases, procurement and consenting strategies and many other important facets for major project delivery."

The Review follows the announcement last month by Transport Minister Phil Twyford and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones that the Infracom would oversee an interim review into the Transmission Gully Project.

The terms of reference are publicly available and can be viewed here [PDF, 137 KB].

Summary Bios for the Review Panel

Steve Richards - Reviewer

Steve has over 25 years supporting the Australian Government on major road and rail projects. He has worked across both the private and public sectors and is a leading expert in assurance and Gateway reviews, having led and participated in several major reviews for Infrastructure New South Wales, Australia, covering the transport, schools, justice, health, education, water and telecommunications portfolios.

Sir Michael Cullen - Peer Reviewer

Sir Michael John Cullen is a former New Zealand politician. He served as Deputy Prime Minister of New Zealand, also Minister of Finance, Minister of Tertiary Education, and Attorney-General. He was the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party from 1996 until November 2008. He resigned from Parliament in April 2009, to become the deputy chairman of New Zealand Post from 1 November 2009 and chairman from 1 November 2010.

Lindsay Crossen - Peer Reviewer

Lindsay Crossen was CEO of Fulton Hogan for eight years and has extensive experience in governance and local government infrastructure roles, including being a member of the National Infrastructure Board from 2009 - 2016.