Alumni news

Securing the missing benefits of Australia's infrastructure boom

Our infrastructure specialists, led by David Donnelly, have been busy exploring the barriers to delivering Australia's project pipeline. A recent survey conducted by Allens shows the industry has clear concerns about the unprecedented infrastructure boom.

77% of senior industry leaders say they are more concerned now about the risks facing the sector than they were five years ago. 43% of senior industry leaders say their ability to deliver the project pipeline is their biggest concern in the next three to five years. They also say transport projects involving tunnels are nine times more likely than social infrastructure to cause delays or cost blowouts.

Kelvin Yu, Associate at Plenary Group and Allens Alumnus said: 'At the moment there is a great focus in Australia on the mega transport infrastructure projects. These are incredible, transformative and important projects, however it's important the Government's focus isn't taken away from other important areas. There are many less sizeable social infrastructure projects which are equally valuable, so it's important we continue to keep the infrastructure pipeline full with a diverse range of projects in terms of size, type and benefit'.

Matt Thomas, Senior Legal Council, LendLease and Allens Alumnus said: 'The way infrastructure has been historically planned and delivered is no longer workable to achieve the government’s objectives. The NSW Government’s 10-point plan is clear recognition of the need for government procurement to evolve in partnership with industry. However, effecting the necessary changes will require robust leadership, a transparent and coordinated approach across all levels of government and genuine engagement with the private sector on a collaborative basis. There is arguably some evidence of the first steps towards a shift in approach, but not yet on a consistent or meaningful scale'.

A detailed review of the research and our recommendations for short-to-medium opportunities are available in our report: 'Securing the missing benefits of Australia's infrastructure boom', along with a video of David Donnelly interviewing partner Nikki O'Leary on the findings of that report.