Beyond the chaos: Is there light at the end of the tunnel for Ireland's infrastructural challenge?

March 13 & 14, 2007, Croke Park Convention Centre, Dublin

Ireland's rapid economic growth continues, while the infrastructure log jam is starting to cause real problems for business. Unless the problem is addressed, it could threaten future economic growth. To sustain our economic competitiveness and population growth, it is estimated that, between now and 2020, a massive €140 billion[1] public sector investment is needed. In addition, the investment in Northern Ireland is projected to be €24 billion (up to 2015).

The political will to deliver on our needed infrastructure seems to be there. The National Development Plan 2007 - 2013 outlines a commitment to further major enhancement of our economic and social infrastructure - notably in the key areas of transport, health, education, social and affordable housing and energy.

Following the success of the inaugural summit last year - and the extremely positive feedback received from delegates - the Sunday Business Post and iQuest are delighted to hold the 2nd National Infrastructure Summit - where the opportunities and challenges we face in delivering this massive investment will be examined.

Both the Sunday Business Post and iQuest would like to thank the main sponsors - PM Group and Siemens for their support this year.

[1] Ireland's Strategic Infrastructure Investment, A&L; Goodbody Consulting, Sept 2005


Hear the issues that matter to policy and decision-makers discussed and debated -

  • Critical appraisal of the NDP 2007 - 2013
  • Removing key barriers to infrastructure delivery
    o Developments in the planning and legal process
    o Procurement and project delivery
    o Capacity in the construction industry
    o Attracting private sector finance and achieving value for money in PPP deals
  • Examining key sectors for investment - health, education, justice, social and affordable housing and a full afternoon on Transport 21
  • An all-island approach to infrastructure development
  • Case studies of major Irish infrastructure projects.


Speed Networking
Events like this are where long-lasting and profitable business relationships begin. You can take the headache out of networking with the morning Speed Networking session. These brief meetings are the starting point for conversation and networking throughout the summit.

  • Meet...move!
  • Exchange business cards with fellow summit delegates and industry peers
  • The best 50-minute networking session you've ever experienced.
  • Beat the traffic
    We've introduced an 8.30am start time for Infrastructure '07 - and a 4.30pm finish - on both days, so that you can spend less time travelling to and from the event.


John O'Connor, Chairperson, An Bord Pleanála
John O'Connor was appointed chairperson of the board for a seven-year term with effect from May 6, 2000. Prior to his appointment, he held the position of Assistant Secretary in the Department of Environment, Heritage and Local Government, in charge of the Planning and Development Division.

His areas of responsibility covered planning, spatial planning, urban and village development, construction, water services and public private partnerships. Before that, he served as Principal Officer in the Housing Policy and Finance Section of the Department and as the Department's Finance Officer. He obtained a diploma in Public Administration from UCD.

Patricia Leahy, Director of PPP Studies, National Audit Office, UK
Patricia Leahy joined the National Audit Office in 1996 after a career in government, industry and investment banking.
Patricia started her career in the Treasury and, subsequently, worked for the chairman of Glaxo.

She joined Rothschilds to work on British and overseas privatisation and moved to Schroders, where she focused mainly on Italian privatisation and capital markets activity. At the National Audit Office, she has directed a range of privatisation and PPP studies on subjects such as the Wider Markets Initiative, the LIFT initiative for improving primary care services and facilities, the London Underground PPP, Network Rail's new structure, the PPP for the National Air Traffic Service.

Anne Counihan, Chief Executive, National Development Finance Agency
Anne Counihan was appointed chief executive of NDFA in 2003. In addition, Ms Counihan is also a director of the National Treasury Management Agency, where she has responsibility for legal and corporate affairs.
A graduate of UCD, she is admitted as a solicitor both in Ireland and England.

She is also a graduate of the advanced management programme at Harvard Business School. Ms Counihan is a member of the Irish Prisons Authority Interim Board, the Irish Aviation Authority Board and has served as a member of the board of Bord na Móna for five years. She is also president of the Corporate and Public Lawyers Association - the main Irish association of in-house lawyers.

Julie O'Neill, Secretary General, Department of Transport
Julie O'Neill was appointed secretary general at the newly-established Department of Transport in June 2002.
From Wexford town, she was educated in Loreto College, Wexford and joined the civil service in 1972.

She holds an MSc in Public Sector Analysis from Trinity College, Dublin and a BComm. (Honours) from University College Dublin.

In her current position Ms O'Neill is administrative head of the Department of Transport with responsibility for policy in relation to roads, aviation, maritime transport and public transport. She has responsibility for a budget of nearly €3 billion per annum - including the largest spend ever in this country on new transport infrastructure through the government's ten-year transport investment programme - Transport 21. Responsibility for oversight of road, rail, aviation and maritime safety falls within the Department.


This summit has been researched and designed for decision-makers in the planning, delivery and financing of public infrastructure such as -

  • Planners and strategists
  • Policy and decision-makers
  • CEOs / MDs
  • Finance Directors
  • Project Developers
  • Economists/Investment Analysts
  • Bankers/Financiers
  • Public Sector Managers
  • Private sector Contractors/Service providers
  • Financial/Legal Advisers
  • Regulatory Bodies
  • Elected representatives.




DAY 1 - Tuesday March 13 2007

7.45 Coffee, light breakfast and registration

8.30 Chairman's opening address

APPRAISAL OF NDP 2006 - 2013

8.55 The challenges to be faced - the equipment to be packed for the NDP expedition
Richard Bruton TD
Deputy Leader & spokesman on finance, Fine Gael

9.15 Appraisal from ESRI
Dr Edgar Morgenroth, Senior Research Officer, ESRI
Last year, the ESRI published its ex-ante evaluation of the new NDP. Their independent advice on the priorities for public investment recommended a significant increase compared to the last NDP, while cautioning on ramping up the level of expenditure excessively.
The report highlighted the need to achieve better value for money through proper planning, evaluation and project management.
Now that the NDP has been published, our speaker gives the ESRI view of the plan.

9.45 Is the NDP ambitious enough?
Peter Brennan, Managing Director, EPS Consulting
Considering the cautionary advice given by the ESRI to Government about the setting of national infrastructure priorities, our speaker will address the following issues -

  • What is the NDP's contribution in addressing this infrastructural deficit?
  • Can we accelerate the delivery of priority national projects?
  • Does the public sector have the manpower and skills to deliver such an investment programme?
  • The role of private finance and expertise.


10.15 Morning Break


10.35 Speed networking

  • Meet...move!
  • Exchange business cards with fellow summit delegates and industry peers
  • The best 50-minute networking session you've ever experienced.


11.25 MORNING KEYNOTE ADDRESS: PPP - The planning of Infrastructure projects
Including the implementation of the Planning and Development (Strategic Infrastructure) Act 2006
John O'Connor
An Bord Pleanála

11.55 Project delivery by the National Development Finance Agency
Aaron Boyle, Senior Associate, Projects Section, Arthur Cox
Legislative changes have been introduced to expand the role and functions of the NDMA as a specialist procurement delivery agency.
Our speaker will give a brief overview of the NDFA Template Project Agreement - focusing on the role of standardisation in project delivery.

12.25 The emergence of a new wave in Irish infrastructure delivery
Colm Moran, Director of Infrastructure, PM Group
Ireland's requirements for and capacity to deliver infrastructure have accelerated with increasing prosperity. The development background has, in parallel, changed beyond recognition - across planning, procurement and environmental considerations.
Comparing past with recent emerging trends provides insight into future approaches to increasingly effective delivery of major infrastructure developments.


12.30 LUNCH
sponsored by


2.10 Welcome back from afternoon chair


2.15 Can the construction industry deliver our needed infrastructure?
Liam Kelleher, Director General, Construction Industry Federation

  • What caused project delays and cost over-runs in NDP 2000-2006?
  • Six constraints identified by CIF in 2000 and what happened to them?
  • The CIF view of ESRI's ex-ante evaluation of new NDP
  • Current industry capacity and constraints/uncertainties extraneous to the industry - but impacting on it
  • Constraints/uncertainties indigenous to the industry.

2.45 International Case studies: Lessons we can learn from key mass transit infrastructure projects
Dr Werner Kruckow, Managing Director, Siemens Ltd
What can we learn from international experience in order to guarantee fit for purpose, on time and on budget delivery of key mass transit projects? Dr Werner Kruckow argues that we should think big in terms of mass transit planning and draws on recent experiences from other cities around the world.


3.10 Afternoon Break


3.30 AFTERNOON KEYNOTE ADDRESS: PPP - achieving and maintaining value for money
Patricia Leahy, Director of PPP Studies, National Audit Office, UK

Our speaker will illustrate with case studies and tangible examples -

  • New approaches to assessing value for money (VFM)
  • The drivers of VFM
  • Achieving a good deal
  • Maintaining VFM over the lifecycle of a development.

4.00 LOCKNOTE ADDRESS: Bidding for Irish public contracts - an outsider's perspective
Liam Connellan, Chairman, Veolia Environment
One company which is attracted to winning public contracts in Ireland is Veolia Environment - the French environmental services and infrastructure giant. Veolia runs the Luas tramway in Dublin and has numerous waste, energy and water interests.
Chairman Liam Connellan gives the company's perspective on operating in the Irish infrastructure landscape.


4.30 Day 1 Close


DAY 2- Wednesday March 14 2007

7.45 Coffee and registration

8.30 Opening remarks from the morning Chair
Pat McGrath, CEO, PM Group

8.35 North/South Infrastructure - An all-island approach
David Gavaghan, Chief Executive, Strategic Investment Board (SIB), Northern Ireland
Our speaker will discuss the 'big picture' view for Northern Ireland and how opportunities are being exploited to dovetail the NDP with the Investment Strategy for Northern Ireland - benefiting all the people of Ireland, particularly people living in border areas.

9.05 CASE STUDY: Strategic Development Framework for the Midlands Gateway of Athlone, Tullamore and Mullingar
Dr. William Hynes, Programme Director of Professional Planning Master's Degrees, School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Policy, UCD
Keith Simpson, Managing Director, Keith Simpson & Associates

The National Spatial Strategy (2002) designated the towns of Athlone, Tullamore and Mullingar as a linked gateway. This study details an effective strategic development framework for the Midlands gateway in order to achieve the region's growth potential.


9.35 MORNING KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Maximising value in Infrastructure investment With a focus on investment in health, justice and education.
Anne Counihan
Chief Executive
National Development Finance Agency


10.05 Morning Break


10.35 Healthcare Investment: Challenges and Opportunities
Deirdre Foley-Woods, Executive Director, The Health Partnership
The challenges facing developers and promoters in understanding how the public and private sectors can work together to deliver an enhanced healthcare infrastructure on the island of Ireland.
Our speaker also outlines and quantifies the opportunities.

11..05 Making social and affordable housing happen
Cathal Conaty, Chief Executive, International Housing Solutions Ltd
From the US and South Africa, to Britain and Jordan, the private sector has teamed up with governments to make affordable housing happen.
Our speaker presents best practice in these countries and identifies opportunities for developers, financial institutions and government to combine to greatly improve delivery in Ireland.


11.35 Dublin Airport
Declan Collier, Chief Executive, Dublin Airport Authority
In response to the huge growth in passenger numbers and freight at Dublin Airport, a massive €2 billion investment is planned.
Hear how the construction programme will transform Dublin Airport over the next decade.

12.00 Grangegorman Campus development
John Fitzgerald, Chairman, Grangegorman Development Agency
A 70-acre site in the heart of Dublin is poised to make a significant contribution to urban regeneration in the inner city. The site will be the home of the new DIT campus and a range of healthcare facilities.
This development is hailed as a unique opportunity to help regenerate the city and to improve the quality of life for the local community.


12..25 LUNCH


1.35 Welcome back from the afternoon chair
Dr Sean Barrett, Lecturer in Economics, Trinity College Dublin


1.45 AFTERNOON KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Transport 21 - Transforming Ireland's transport system Progress to date on the delivery of key elements of Ireland's largest ever transport investment programme.
Julie O'Neill
Secretary General
Department of Transport

2.15 Realising Transport 21 - a consultant's perspective
Kerry O'Sullivan, Director and Chairman, RPS Consulting Engineers

  • Achievements to date on road transport infrastructure
  • Impact of continuing infrastructural development
  • Ability of design professional bodies to deliver
  • Flagging potential difficulties in the industry
  • Environmental protection and stakeholder issues.

2.40 PANEL DISCUSSION - Dublin Metro - making tracks
The government's flagship project has come in for harsh criticism from opposition parties and economists. Is the criticism justified?
Frank Allen, Chief Executive, Railway Procurement Agency
Cormac Rabbitt, Transport Consultant
Michele Connolly, Partner, KPMG Corporate Finance
Colm McCarthy, School of Economics, UCD


3.10 Afternoon break


3.35 The vital role of rail in 21st century Ireland
Dr John J Lynch, Chairman, CIE
The railway has a vital role to play in addressing the bottlenecks in our transport infrastructure. Significant service improvements have been delivered in recent years and Iarnród Eiréann is now the fastest growing railway in the EU.
However, exploiting the full potential of the railway has a long way to go. Achieving this is vital to the long-term development of the Irish economy.

4.05 LOCKNOTE ADDRESS: Creating Quality Roads
Gerry Murphy, Head of PPP & Tolling, National Roads Authority
As a high quality national road network takes shape, it is worth reviewing the challenges met and overcome to date, the ambitious future of Transport 21 and what may emerge beyond Transport 21.

4.30 Chairman's closing remarks and conference close


Raise your profile, network with decision-makers attending this event and generate new business leads by exhibiting at The National Infrastructure Summit.

For details, call Marion Wallace on 087-2461662 or email: [email protected]



Siemens - Global network of innovation
Siemens, headquartered in Berlin and Munich, is one of the world's largest electrical engineering and electronics companies.

Our company businesses are focused on six key areas - Information and Communications, Automation and Control, Power, Transportation, Healthcare and Consumer Appliances.

In Ireland, Siemens Limited was formed as a registered company in 1925 and has been involved in many key infrastructural projects - commencing with the Shannon hydro-electric power scheme in 1926. Major projects have included the construction of many of Ireland's power plants, large scale transportation solutions, the introduction of the most up-to-date Medical Imaging systems to Ireland's hospitals and the installation of state-of-the-art communications and transmission networks to both fixed and mobile operators. The company employs over 1000 highly skilled people in Ireland.

The Ireland of tomorrow will be shaped, in large measure, by the Megatrends of urbanisation and demographic change and by ensuring adequate supplies of energy, water and other everyday necessities. Guaranteeing mobility, security, communications, healthcare, industrial production and environmental protection will be a major challenge.

Siemens - with its cross-sector portfolio, technological leadership and strong local presence - is better positioned than any other company to provide the solutions needed to meet the requirements of tomorrow's Ireland. The company's innovative and future-proof solutions generate competitive advantages for its customers and lay the basis for profitable growth.

For more information on Siemens - Click Here

PM Group
PM Group is Ireland's largest full-service engineering and project management firm.

Established in 1973, PM's team of 1,600 people provides professional services in project and construction management, architectural and engineering design and technical consultancy, to clients in Ireland and overseas. PM's clients come from the Bio-Pharma, Medical and Advanced Technologies, Food, Energy and Infrastructure sectors. Multi-national clients include Amgen, Abbott, Pfizer, Centocor, Janssen, Glaxo Smithkline, Novartis, Elan, Boston Scientific, Genzyme, Intel, Xerox and IBM.

In the public sector, PM Group has carried out work for Dublin Airport, Dublin Bus, NUIG, UCC, Cork City Council, OPW, Bord Gais, Irish Rail and the Department of Education - amongst others.

PM Group has grown steadily with its client base - and, since 1995, the company has doubled in size and increased fee income to over €120 million in 2005. PM Group continues to grow in the overseas market. The company has worked in most central and eastern European countries and in a number of other global locations in recent years. In addition to its bases in Dublin and Cork, PM Group has significant offices in Britain and Poland where it has developed strong multinational client bases. In eastern Europe, PM is currently supervising infrastructure projects valued in excess of €400 million - with another €250 million of industrial projects across Europe.

The company is also continuing to develop its business in Ireland. Involvement in projects - such as the Dublin Airport Pier D, Lansdowne Road Stadium redevelopment, Amgen and Centocor - underline the level of project management expertise the company has developed.

For more information - Click Here

RPS Group is Ireland's largest all-island multi-disciplinary consultancy.

We provide services in planning, transportation, energy, civil, structural, environment, mechanical and electrical engineering.

In Ireland, RPS employs about 950 professional and technical support personnel based at a dozen offices at various locations in Dublin, Cork, Belfast, Galway, Limerick, Waterford and Letterkenny.

RPS have planned, designed and supervised the construction of some of Ireland's largest infrastructural projects in roads and transportation, water services, energy and waste management, building development and environmental management. We are also the leading consultant in the implementation of public private partnerships and have a unique knowledge and understanding of the development, contract management and financial control of PPP-type contracts in the Irish public and private sectors.

With more than 40 years experience, we work in partnership with stakeholders to ensure a sustainable solution on behalf of our clients.

For more information - Click Here


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For further details - including On-line Booking - Click Here

Conference Brochure - Click Here


Contact information

Pamela Vymazal / Miriam McEvitt
Tel: 01-6026043 / 01-6026000
Fax: 01-4786198
Email: [email protected]
Address: The Sunday Business Post, 80 Harcourt Street, Dublin 2



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