Allens has a full-service offering across project development, encompassing origination, planning, documentation, tax and regulatory elements, and disputes. The firm acts on major projects within energy, oil and gas, infrastructure, and mining, with high-profile domestic and international clients. Emma Warren oversees the national projects team, and specialises in public infrastructure and PPP arrangements. David Donnelly advises primarily on transport projects, acting for public and private sector clients, alongside closing several key transactions in multiple infrastructure asset classes. Kate Axup takes the lead on energy projects, most notably renewable energy developments, advising on transactions, development, and regulatory matters. Sydney-based Richard Malcolmson is highly active in the mining sector, while oil and gas lead Igor Bogdanich specialises in large-scale energy and resources projects, acting as key relationship partner for major clients including Exxon and Rio Tino. Also in Sydney, Leighton O’Brien specialises in infrastructure work, encompassing construction advice and dispute resolution. Lawyers are in Melbourne unless otherwise stated.
Project development in Australia
Other key lawyers:
Australian Industrial Energy
- Advised the financiers to the Cross Yarra Partnership on the successful close of the Metro Tunnel Package and related packages of the AU$11bn Melbourne Metro Project.
- Advised the NRT consortium on the financial close of the $3.7bn Public Private Partnership (PPP) for the next stage of Australia’s biggest public transport project, Sydney Metro.
- Advising TransGrid on the procurement and construction of EnergyConnect, a proposed 900km electricity interconnector.
Ashurst is heavily involved in major projects across Australia, advising on large-scale road, rail, aerospace, and social infrastructure developments. The team is integrated nationally, and also regularly advises on projects across the Asia-Pacific, most notably the Honolulu Light Rail development in Hawaii. The team is led by Lee McDonald, who oversees the global projects team and regularly advises on major transport and infrastructure projects nationally and internationally, alongside Angus Foley, a regular adviser to public and private sector clients on transport and energy developments. Alex Guy specialises in infrastructure work and advises prolifically on PPP projects, while Melbourne's David Jardine is noted for his international expertise and role in major project procurements. Krista Payne has a strong record in light rail and other transport sectors, and has advised on projects in Australia and Europe. Lawyers are in Sydney unless otherwise stated.
Transport for NSW
State Solicitor’s Office of Western Australia
Department of Defence
University of Melbourne
Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation
- Acting as PPP adviser to HART in relation to the procurement and development of Hawaii’s first PPP and first rail project, the Honolulu Light Rail Project.
- Advising Transport for NSW on the design, construction, operation and maintenance of a new light rail line, the CBD and South East Light Rail, and the operation and maintenance of the existing Inner West Light Rail (IWLR) line as one integrated system.
- Advising Sydney Metro on all aspects of the City & Southwest project.
Clayton Utz has an extensive projects team that is active in major road, rail, and transport infrastructure projects across Australia, also advising on projects in other jurisdictions such as New Zealand. The firm works with public and private sector clients, including developers, constructors, and delivery organisations, with government advice a major part of the team's offering. Brisbane's Sergio Capelli heads the national infrastructure team, advising public and private sector clients at all stages of developments, with particular expertise in project delivery and contracts. Joanna Pugsley in Melbourne is also highly experienced in major projects, handling social infrastructure and transport developments from inception through to ongoing operation. Also in Melbourne, Steven Murray specialises in road transport work, regularly advising the Victorian Government on major developments. Brisbane's David Lester offers significant in-house expertise on road and rail infrastructure projects in Queensland, while Melbourne-based Andrew Fry is noted for his role in contracting, procurement, and administration for major transportation projects.
State of Victoria – Major Transport Infrastructure Authority
Adigun (JV NZ Government and Auckland Council)
Australian Capital Territory Government
Cross River Rail Delivery Authority
Transport for NSW
Fortescue Metals Group
Tianqi Lithium Corporation
Brisbane City Council
Nippon Steel Australia
NS Resources Australia
Australia Pacific LNG
Major Road Projects Victoria
Kawasaki Heavy Industries
Queensland Government – Treasury Department Commercial Group
Department of Transport and Main Roads
Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners
- Advising MTIA on all aspects of the planning and development for the North East Link project.
- Advising CRRDA on the Preliminary Evaluation, Business Case and Procurement phases of Cross River Rail.
- Advising Fortescue Metals Group on a number of matters, including including the AU$10bn Solomon Mine Project.
King & Wood Mallesons
King & Wood Mallesons advises the public and private sector on projects, acting for governments, contractors, financiers in complex commercial, financial, and regulatory matters relating to road, rail, and energy sector projects. The practice is a repeat advisor to a variety of state and federal government entities, reflecting broad expertise in national infrastructure. Mark Upfold leads the team and reflects the capabilities of the wider practice in acting for private and public sector clients on a variety of major infrastructure developments and transactions. The highly experienced Chris Mitchell specialises in transport infrastructure, PPP projects, and residential developments, as part of a broad practice. In Brisbane, Craig Rogers takes the lead on energy, resources, and commodities projects, while Debra Townsend specialises in environment and planning mandates.
‘KWM has a large and experienced construction team, led by partners who have an in-depth knowledge of the construction industry in Australia and the key players within it.’
Australia Pacific Airports
Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC)
Clean Energy Finance Corporation
Destination Brisbane Consortium
Infrastructure NSW (iNSW)
Lightsource Development Services Australia
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets
Murra Warra II Asset Co as trustee of the Murra Warra II Asset Trust
Port of Melbourne
Suburban Land Agency
Sydney Airport Corporation
Transport for NSW (TfNSW)
University of Canberra
Winning International Group
- Avised Water NSW (a New South Wales state-owned corporation) on its landmark pumped hydro clean energy project. B
- Advising TfNSW in relation to the $955m Central Precinct Renewal Project which involves the large-scale redevelopment of Central Station and surrounding infrastructure.
- Advising Lightsource BP across the whole project lifecycle of the Wellington Solar Farm.
Minter Ellison works with state governments and associated entities, investors, constructors, and infrastructure providers on the life-cycle of projects, encompassing concept development, documentation, contracts, project delivery, and associate disputes. The firm has considerable strength in both contentious and non-contentious matters, and acts on state and national projects of considerable prominence. Stewart Nankervis is an experienced projects lawyer who regularly acts on large-scale PPP projects in road, rail, transport infrastructure, and health care. Peter Wood oversees the national projects and construction team and specialises in construction disputes, including high-profile litigation. Sydney-based Pamela Jack combines extensive expertise in project documentation and delivery with disputes resolution work. Also in Sydney, Nicole Green heads up the infrastructure practice and has strong industry connections. Owen Cooper brings previous in-house engineering experience to his work on procurement, tender, and contracts in the construction and infrastructure sectors. Lawyers are in Melbourne unless otherwise stated.
State Governments and various State government entities
CIMIC (including CPB)
Brookfield / Multiplex
- Advised various private sector clients on every stage of the Sydney Metro City and South West packages, including the augmentation, line wide package and multiple over station developments.
- The lead law firm advising on the multi-billion dollar Melbourne Airport Rail Project and the Sunshine Station Redevelopment. This project has been in planning for over 50 years and represents one of Victoria’s largest rail, property development and rolling stock projects.
- A multi-disciplinary team advising on the combined Cross River Rail and Inner City ETCS Level 2 projects – the delivery of which will ease congestion in South East Queensland. The project was awarded PFI’s Asia Pacific Transport Deal of the Year for 2019.
Forming a key part of an integrated Asia-Pacific projects team, White & Case plays a key role in the life-cycle of major projects across Australia and the wider region. Heavily involved in light rail and other transportation projects, the team also advises sponsors and government clients on energy, utilities, and social infrastructure projects. Andrew Clark heads up the practice alongside Brendan Quinn, and leads on high-value and significant project financing and development matters, with a strong focus on the transport and rail sectors. Alan Rosengarten specialises in construction and transactional work across the infrastructure space. Joanne Draper is recognised for her work on major infrastructure and projects across defence, transport, and healthcare, while Adeline Pang is highly active in the renewable energy space.
‘Partner representing our upstream negotiations, with a separate partner representing our downstream negotiations worked really well.‘
‘Joanne Draper was always professional no matter the request, and had first-class knowledge to provide a 360-degree analysis of commercial positions.‘
‘Across the detail, know the documents, great industry knowledge, practical, commercial advice, and a pleasure to deal with.‘
Suburban Rail Loop Authority
Rail Projects Victoria
Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners
Fotowatio Renewable Ventures
Malakoff Corporation Berhad
Star of the South Wind Farm
Commonwealth Bank of Australia
Perdaman Chemicals and Fertilisers
Australia and New Zealand Banking Group
National Australia Bank
- Advising the Suburban Rail Loop Authority in relation to the investment case and procurement of the AUD$50bn Suburban Rail Loop.
- Acting for the ViaNova Consortium in relation to all aspects of its bid to the Victorian Government to deliver the North East Link PPP project.
- Advising Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners as sponsor, on the development and project financing of the 589 MW Changfang and Xidao offshore wind projects off the coast of Changhua County in Taiwan.
Corrs Chambers Westgarth has broad capabilities across oil and gas, energy, transport, and social infrastructure, advising contractors, government bodies, construction companies, and investors. The team works on contract negotiation, development and construction issues, disputes, and regulatory compliance, collaborating closely with the firm's highly-regarded construction practice on sector-critical projects of significant value. The practice is led by Melbourne's Andrew Stephenson, who acts on contentious and non-contentious elements of major projects, alongside Brisbane's Matthew Muir. Sydney-based Airlie Fox specialises in major infrastructure projects and PPP arrangements in a range of sectors, with expertise on the investor, contractor, and developer side of projects. John Walter is a highly experienced infrastructure lawyer. Brisbane's Peter Schenk combines construction expertise with disputes resolution, including Supreme Court litigation, insurance claims, and arbitration. Anthony Arrow joined the Melbourne office in mid-2020 from Pinsent Masons LLP, offering extensive experience in infrastructure, energy, and construction on behalf of domestic and international developers. The promotions of Carla Mills, Paul Brickley, and Chris Campbell to partner have bolstered the practice's senior ranks.
Other key lawyers:
‘Exceptional team who drive innovative and out of the box solutions to legal problems.‘
‘David Warren is an outstanding lawyer who thinks deeply about issues and finds practical solutions that can be implemented.’
DIF Capital Partners
Bouygues Construction Australia
St George Community Housing
- Representing multiple leading Australian construction contractors on major project packages for the Cross River Rail project.
- Advising Woodside Energy on four significant construction packages related to the Browse LNG Project.
- Advising Metro North Hospital and Health Service (as the owner of the site) on all legal aspects of the planned AU$1.1bn redevelopment of Herston Quarter.
With bench strength across Western and Eastern Australia, DLA Piper is active in road and rail, transport, and mining projects nationally and internationally. The firm has notable expertise in cross-border work, advising both domestic developers and foreign investors, and is also increasing its share of innovative collaborative contracting work, a particular focus area for Melbourne-based John Gallagher. The team is overseen by Sydney's Owen Hayford, an infrastructure specialist with expertise in public and private sector developments, alongside Perth's Alex Jones, who focuses on the energy and natural resources sectors, and Brisbane's Stephen Webb, a government-focused advisor involved in high-profile international work across Asia and Oceania. Also in Brisbane, Kate Muller (previously Papailiou) is highly involved in energy and utilities projects for both public and private sector clients.
‘Jack Brumpton is a very knowledgeable lawyer, and reliable in terms of quality of his advice and responsiveness. Jack works with the other team members who are all top quality and provide a seamless service across all the aspects of project development and operations, especially for cross-border matters.’
‘The DLA Project Team was able to bring significant relevant previous experience to the table which added value to the commercial outcomes we achieved. We felt confident at all times they were not learning on the job as the team displayed a depth of knowledge on all the moving parts involved in our transaction and were able to recommend options at various stages which delivered a successful commercial outcome.‘
‘The team works as a seamless, cohesive unit that is clearly well led by Rhys Davies. The team has responded to every challenge over the past 12 months with inexhaustible hard work; good humour and expertise. The advice we have received has been timely, commercial, and always correct. We have been dealing with very complex issues that require lateral thinking and creative solutions. The DLA team has always risen to the challenge.‘
‘The stand-out Partner is Rhys Davies. Rhys is dynamic; responsive; commercial and a creative thinker. Given the amount of time I have spent with his team, Rhys is also clearly a great leader. No matter how hard we’re working, Rhys and his team are always in good humour and happy to help.‘
SUEZ Recycling and Recovery
Design & Construction JV
Auckland City Council
Downer EDI Rail
Veolia Water Australia
Australian Football League
TTCL Public Company and Sojitz Corporation
Resolute Mining Limited
The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan – Ministry of Mines and Petroleum
The Government of Timor-Leste
Destination Brisbane Consortium
Atlas Personnel Services
Salt Lake Potash
- Advising the Design & Construction JV to the Spark Consortium on its bid for the PPP Package of the $16.5bn North East Link project.
- Advising Thales Australia on its bids to Transport for NSW for delivery of both the Digital Systems Trackside Package and the TMS Package.
- Advising on the development of the Eramurra Industrial Salt Project in Western Australia.
Herbert Smith Freehills
Herbert Smith Freehills has a broad offering, with specialists in PPP social infrastructure developments, as well as a strong record in construction, road, rail, and mining projects. Key names include Toby Anderson, who oversees the Asia-Pacific team and specialises in off-shore developments, infrastructure and transport lead David Ryan, highly-regarded disputes partner Geoff Hansen, and the finance-focused Erin Wakelin.
Norton Rose Fulbright has expanded its national projects team extensively, with standout additions including the transfer to Sydney of experienced projects leader Joanne Emerson Taqi from Bahrain, and Laura Walton's move to the Brisbane office from Clayton Utz. The firm acts throughout the life cycle of large-scale construction and infrastructure projects in the transport, energy, and mining sectors, with capabilities across bid tenders, contract agreements, transactions, disputes, and financing. Melbourne-based co-head Jo Crew advises on sponsor-side infrastructure development across transport and social infrastructure, with experience in complex PPP agreements. Sydney's Emanuel Confos oversees the construction team, working on industry standards, project documentation, and disputes. Luke van Grieken made partner in 2019 and has taken the lead on a number of major renewable energy projects.
John Holland Group
Brookfield / Multiplex
National Australia Bank
Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation
Bright Energy Investments
City of Sydney
Department of Defence
University of Wollongong (UOW)
Northern Territory Airports
Australia and New Zealand Banking Group
China Construction Bank Corporation
Signal Energy Australia
Calvary Health Care
- Advised sponsors CWP Renewables and Partners Group on all aspects of the development, construction and debt financing of the 244MW Bango Wind Farm in the southern tablelands.
- Advised a consortium of banks on the financing of East Rockingham Resource Recovery Facility.
- Advising Acciona Infrastructure Australia on the delivery of the Sydney Light Rail PPP.
Gilbert + Tobin
Gilbert + Tobin bolstered its projects offering with the arrival of projects and infrastructure finance specialist Peter Doyle as co-practice head in mid-2019, and the early 2020 hire of construction-focused partner Kon Nakousis from Clyde & Co LLP. The firm increased its share of road and rail transport work with Doyle's arrival, while continuing to work regularly on complex projects in areas such as energy transmission and renewable energy generation, gold and minerals mining, and social infrastructure, particularly health and water. Alexander Danne co-leads the team in Melbourne and has a broad practice acting for sponsors and financiers on a wide range of projects. Christopher Flynn leads on large-scale energy and resources projects for public and private clients and is regularly involved in cross-border operations.
ENGIE Services Australia & New Zealand Holdings
GE Renewable Energy
HRL Morrison & Co
- Acted for Veolia on a project for a new $450m waste-to-energy facility in WA.
- Advising owners, Brookfield Asset Management, in relation to the operation of the Northern Beaches Hospital project.
- Advising PNG on negotiations with ExxonMobil in respect of the proposed development of the P’nyang gas field, including construction of a third LNG train alongside the $19bn PNG LNG project.
K&L Gates focuses on projects in the renewable energy sector, greenfields developments, transport, and social infrastructure work. Matters include infrastructure transactions, construction and operations contracts, and distribution agreements, on behalf of constructors, public and private transport companies, and subcontractors. The practice is led from Melbourne by Zac Kerr, who focuses on transport and social infrastructure, with particular expertise in roads, rail, aviation, and public-private-partnership (PPP) agreements, alongside Luke Westmore, a regular advisor on renewable energy projects, including wind and hydro generation and distribution projects. The arrival of Simon Ashworth has bolstered the team's range of expertise and client base.
Other key lawyers:
‘Simon Ashworth is a consummate professional; always attuned to client needs, very responsive and provides sound commercial advice.‘
‘Simon Ashworth is an exceptional lawyer with a deep understanding of the Australian projects market, deal norms, and market participants. More importantly, Simon has taken the time to understand my business, its needs, and its complexities. As such, Simon delivers expert, relevant and practical advice.‘
- Advised Acciona on the development of the AU$511m East Rockingham Resource Recovery Facility.
- Advised RATCH-Australia Corporation (as the project sponsor) on the full suite of project documents and project finance documentation to the Collector Wind Farm located in Collector, NSW.
- Advising Canadian Solar on all aspects of the 150 MW Gunnedah and 189 MW Suntop Solar projects.
McCullough Robertson advises on a range of construction and infrastructure projects across Australia, on behalf of energy and resources houses, constructors, government bodies, and international infrastructure firms. Matters include large-scale and critical transport infrastructure projects, solar and wind farms, and hydroelectric dams. Alongside front-end contracts and regulatory work, the practice also acts in disputes, including litigation and alternative dispute resolution forums. In Brisbane, practice head Michael Rochester advises domestic and overseas investors and local councils on project delivery, while Matt Bradbury focuses on large-scale construction disputes. Evan Economo joined the Sydney team from an in-house position in late 2019, bringing significant experience in transactions, contract agreements, and disputes.
Sandvik Mining and Construction Australia
Queensland Government Bulk Water Supply Authority
- Representing the Downer Group in disputes arising in its engagement as the head contractor for Dundonnell Wind Farm.
- Advising Seqwater in relation to the approvals and project delivery for the upgrade of Lake MacDonald Dam.
- Acting for eight Councils in relation to their stakeholding in the Inland Rail Project, a $10bn ‘nation building’ project being delivered by the Australian Rail Track Corporation.
Allen & Overy LLP
Allen & Overy LLP advises constructors and developers on all aspects of a project's life cycle, encompassing land permissions and contracts, procurement and other transactions, regulatory issues, and operations. The team works on projects in the energy, road and rail, infrastructure, and power sectors, and regularly forms part of cross-border teams acting on developments across the Asia-Pacific. Sydney's Simon Huxley now leads the team, specialising in commercial contracts and construction issues in a wide range of infrastructure and PPP projects. Perth's Goran Galic is another key name, primarily focusing on onshore and offshore energy and resources projects, particularly LNG.
‘High quality and efficient legal advice, very knowledgeable in the sector and respected in the industry.‘
‘Goran Galic is a very commercial, deal-savvy energy and resources lawyer who provides top-shelf advice and support in all aspects of the sector including project development, overseas mining joint ventures, and M&A deals in the space.‘
‘A&O was able to provide advice across multiple products (bank loans and capital markets) from within the firm and within the Sydney office.’
‘Adam Stapledon, Mark Leemen and Simon Huxley are a strong, well-co-ordinated team. Adam Stapledon as lender counsel (finance) worked to build consensus across a disparate bank group and isolate and resolve the key commercial issues. When faced with highly unique structuring aspects in changing market conditions, Adam worked extensively and constructively with sponsor counsel to facilitate mutually agreeable outcomes.’
Palisade Investment Partners
- Advised Palisade Investment Partners on its acquisition and subsequent refinancing of the Snowtown 2 Wind Farm from vendor Tilt Renewables for a reported total enterprise value of AU$1.07bn.
- Advised John Laing Group on its AU$51.5m investment in the East Rockingham Resource Recovery Facility in Perth, Australia.
- Advising the financiers to a shortlisted confidential bidder in relation to its bid for the Suburban Roads Upgrade PPP in Victoria.
Baker McKenzie oversees projects across a wide range of sectors, with niche expertise in transport infrastructure, renewable energy, disputes, and university residential developments, to name a few. The firm advises on complex disputes, contractual arrangements, and land tenders, with clients including construction companies, inbound investors and sponsors, and government vendors. Melbourne's Anthony Whelan now co-heads the team, and focuses on construction issues, advising developers, construction companies, and subcontractors on the life-cycle of projects. Sydney-based co-head Sean Duffy concentrates on infrastructure and financing matters.
Other key lawyers:
‘The team works really well together and has a great mix of talent across the team. I would rate them as one of the best major projects team in the market. They are very responsive and know the market so can zero in on the key issues in major projects.‘
‘Michael Kunstler is an exceptional lawyer and leader within the Firm’s team. He is one of the most influential and market-leading individuals in the legal market. His ability to formulate a strategy on a deal is second to none.’
‘Sean Duffy has fantastic market knowledge and is the person you want advising you on a complex deal. He is very responsive and leads a great team.‘
‘Their advice is concise, efficient, targeted, and high level – it always hits the mark with the audience. Nothing is too much trouble and offers for additional help are genuinely in the business interest rather than a fee grab/ scope creep.‘
Lendlease (Building, Engineering and Services divisions)
University of Technology Sydney
McConnell Dowell/ Built Environs
V601 Developments Pty Ltd
- Advising Acciona on its bid for the operation and maintenance of the Sydney Desalination Plant (SDP); and the design and construction of the expansion of the Sydney Desalination Plant.
- Advising Lendlease in relation to the delivery phase of the Martin Place Metro Station PPP and the proposed redevelopment of Fort Street High School.
- Advising WaterNSW regarding procurement strategy, tendering and contract drafting in relation to the Warragamba Dam Wall Raising project.
Pinsent Masons LLP
Pinsent Masons LLP is involved in large-scale transport infrastructure projects across Australia, and regularly contributes to multi-jurisdictional teams acting on projects across the Asia-Pacific region. The firm also advises on a range of energy generation, transmission, and storage projects, particularly within the renewables sector. The team was boosted by the dual arrival from Norton Rose Fulbright of Sydney-based Mark Waddell, a construction-focused lawyer with a strong record in PPP projects, alongside Melbourne's James Morgan-Payler, who specialises in complex procurement processes. Jeremy King oversees the national projects team from Melbourne, supported by Sydney's Fraser McMillan, who heads up the firm's construction advisory and disputes practice.
Other key lawyers:
‘Pro-active and responsive to client concerns.‘
‘Honesty and integrity. Will give the correct answer and not necessarily the answer I want to hear.‘
Qube RE Services
Hitachi Zosen Inova
Laing O’Rourke Australia
Korean Water Corporation
Vestas Australian Wind Technology
- Advised Goldwind on the delivery of the Stockyard Hill Wind Farm Project in Victoria.
- Advising the Elecnor-Clough JV as Principal Contractor on its bid to deliver Project EnergyConnect, the construction of a A$1.5bn energy interconnector between the power grids of South Australia and New South wales, with an added connection to Victoria.
- Advised the joint venture between Comdain Infrastructure, Lendlease Services, John Holland and WSP on its successful bid for the Sydney Water “Partnering for Success” Project.