Navigating the complexities in major  infrastructure project planning and environmental approval processes

Navigating the planning and approval processes on major infrastructure projects in Victoria can prove to be quite complex. Join us at the next PEWA event where a panel of experienced professionals will provide insights from a legal, government and consultants' perspective.     

Gabrielle Guthrie -  Principal of Guthrie Legal, will compare and contrast the different planning processes and provide commentary on pinch points within the various approval processes for legal risk.

Cathy Philo - Manager Planning and Approvals, Level Crossing Removal Authority (LXRA), will provide a perspective from the LXRA project,  focussing on the challenge of simultaneously managing multiple planning approvals and insights from the public sector point of view.

Rachel Harding – Associate Director Environment, AECOM, will provide a perspective from a consultants’ point of view on the challenges faced by clients to navigate the planning and environmental assessment processes.

Hosted by AECOM, the seminar is complimentary and will be accompanied by breakfast and an opportunity for networking.



Gabrielle Guthrie
Gabrielle is Principal of Guthrie Legal, a specialist environment and planning legal practice. She is passionate about transport development and has advised on numerous transport cases including major infrastructure projects, for both proponents and objectors.  Gabrielle has also advised in relation to large infrastructure development projects requiring numerous planning permits and other state and federal approvals, such as EPBC approvals.  Some highlights of her experience include advising on recent Supreme Court and VCAT litigation in relation to the East West Link; on the proposed development of the Port of Hastings (Victoria); the development of the Port of Felixstowe and related branch line (UK).  She has also advised both asset managers and operators in relation to environment and planning aspects of infrastructure construction and operation. 

Cathy Philo
Cathy has been working in the planning and environment field for over 25 years, most of which has been spent in the public sector in the UK and Victoria, Australia.  She has undertaken diverse roles including botanical conservation, community development, environmental education, heritage conservation and urban and environmental planning.  Driven by a desire to deliver positive change, Cathy is currently managing the planning and environment function for the Level Crossing Removals Program. 
The Level Crossing Removals Program includes removing 50 of Melbourne’s most dangerous and congested level crossings, the Hurstbridge Rail Line Upgrade, the Cranbourne Pakenham Rail Upgrade, and the Mernda Rail Extension.  This is a fast-paced program with multiple projects running concurrently, touching almost every municipality in Metropolitan Melbourne.  A true city-shaping project, it provides a breadth of challenges and opportunities to ensure Melbourne’s liveability for current and future generations.

Rachel Harding
Rachel Harding is an Associate Director in the AECOM Melbourne office with more than fifteen years of experience in the areas of oil and gas, and industrial facilities. She has successfully managed complex multi-million dollar projects and large, multi-disciplinary teams.  Demonstrating unwavering commitment and professionalism, her methods in project delivery and facilitation centre on technically sound advice and reporting, robust procedures for quality control and risk management while ensuring a strong client focus based on relationship building.
Her key areas of expertise are environment approvals and assessment, risk assessment and options analysis, air emissions and wastewater, benchmarking and modelling, compliance and management systems.  As a qualified environmental compliance auditor, Rachel has exceptional understanding of environmental legislation and applies a rigorous approach to environmental assessment. 


Thursday 27 April, 2017



(Light breakfast provided)


AECOM, Collins Square
Level 10, Tower Two,
727 Collins Street

Melbourne, VIC 3000


Thursday 20 April, 2017