Construction procurement, delivery and disputes

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Successful construction projects require a specialist team. We’ll work alongside your team, providing proactive advice from project inception to completion and beyond.

With the largest dedicated offering in New Zealand, our team of over 30 construction specialists is uniquely placed to provide a continuum of service from project inception to completion and beyond. 

Ranked Tier 1 by independent legal directories Chambers Asia-Pacific and The Legal 500 Asia Pacific and with individual partner rankings, we are trusted advisers to government, principals and private sector developers on the largest works programs, projects and disputes in the country. We also act for tier 1 consultants and contractors, as well as other key industry participants.

Our clients come from a range of sectors including government (central, local government and government agencies), energy, transport, warehousing and logistics, utilities, health and aged care / retirement, retail, and commercial and residential property developments. 

We partner with our clients throughout a project’s lifecycle – from strategic input at the business case and procurement planning stages, through to the preparation and negotiation of the full suite of construction documentation. We regularly advise on all standard form contracts in New Zealand (FIDIC, CCCS, NZS and NEC3) as well as bespoke contracts and have intrinsic knowledge of the Government Procurement Rules including Broader Outcomes.

We advise during project delivery and our specialist construction disputes team assist on strategic project advice and on dispute resolution in all forums (adjudication under the Construction Contracts Act, arbitration and litigation proceedings). Our dispute resolution specialists help navigate and project manage both mid-project issues as well as disputes initiated after project completion, successfully representing clients in all dispute resolution forums including complex product liability cases spanning both domestic and international parties. We understand the importance of developing deep relationships, and work alongside our clients, helping to manage project delivery issues and avoid any potential missteps.

Actively influencing and shaping industry developments from the inside out, our construction specialists are involved in industry organisations and forums. Sarah Sinclair is appointed to Te Waihanga (New Zealand Infrastructure Commission). Janine Stewart served on the Construction Sector Accord Steering Group between 2019 - 2022, and the New Zealand Government’s Building Advisory Panel (as the sole legal appointee) up until 2022. Mark Crosbie has several significant government clients and is influential in shaping their procurement processes and contractual settings.

We are committed to impactful thought leadership. We are heavily involved in construction law education through developing the Universities’ syllabuses and thought leadership conferences and presentations. Clients benefit from our regular industry updates and seminar schedule, ensuring they are at the forefront of what’s going on in the New Zealand construction sector.

When you need a practical approach and value timely and cost-effective solutions, talk to us.

They are very knowledgeable and proactive at foreseeing issues that need to be considered. The team is at the forefront of construction-related issues. The Legal 500 Asia Pacific


Recent highlights
Canterbury Earthquake rebuild ‘Anchor Projects’

Since 2011, advising Rau Paenga (formerly Ōtākaro) on all aspects of the planning, procurement, delivery, completion and ownership transfer of the Anchor Projects, comprising more than $1billion of project work. This has included the $300m Christchurch Justice & Emergency Services Precinct project; the $50m Bus Interchange project; the $475m Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre project; the $300m Parakiore Recreation and Sport Centre; and the Avon River Precinct, South Frame and Accessible City infrastructure and public realm projects. 

Major projects delivery for Kiwi Property Group

Advising Kiwi Property Group in relation to development and construction projects across its NZ$3billion plus property portfolio, including its capital investment programme and major project works at Sylvia Park (New Zealand’s largest shopping centre) – such as the second and third office towers and the Build-to-Rent (BTR) precinct, the multi-use Build-to-Rent development at LynnMall, and new large format retail developments at Sylvia Park, and its new Drury Town Centre development.

Development of the Britomart Heritage Precinct

Acting for the developer, Cooper and Company, in the ongoing development of the Britomart Precinct since inception. This includes most recently the refurbishment and renovation of heritage buildings and the development of an award-wining boutique hotel, The Hotel Britomart. The hotel development included some new (to New Zealand) construction techniques requiring contract documents to align with the assurance processes structured by the team for such construction.

Major works contracts for hospitals

Acting for both Te Whatu Ora - Te Toka Tumai Auckland (formerly Auckland DHB) and Te Whatu Ora - Taranaki (formerly Taranaki DHB) on their respective core development programmes – ‘FIRP’ and ‘Maunga Stage 2’ respectively. This included leading a cross regional group in developing a new format ‘Major Works Contract’ aimed at addressing market issues in construction and in construction contracts. Also advised on procurement and project implementation strategies to progress the programmes through COVID and an industry peak cycle.

Retirement village developments

We act for the largest retirement and aged care developers in New Zealand on their development programs, including Metlifecare, Bupa, Generus Group, Hoppers and Lifecare. 

Ruakura Superhub development

Lead construction adviser to Tainui Group, one of New Zealand’s largest iwi organisations, on its enormous, nationally significant, Ruakura-Superhub development at Hamilton. At 490 hectares, Ruakura Superhub is one of New Zealand’s largest multi-use developments.

Advising PwC as the commercial anchor tenant at Commercial Bay

Acting for PwC on the deal with Precinct Properties that saw PwC become the anchor tenant of the Commercial Bay office tower (now called PwC Tower), the landmark 38-storey office tower in the Auckland CBD. This was one of the highest value and highest profile office leasing transactions in Auckland in recent times.

New Zealand’s largest defective building case

Acting for Auckland Council on a significant part of its overall defective building litigation, including Gore Street (CIV-2014-404-716), NZ’s the largest defective building case in New Zealand to date. This involves multifaceted structural and fire defects, requiring substantial expert analysis and evidence.

Multi-million-dollar product liability action against James Hardie NZ

Acting for Metlifecare in complex proceedings in the High Court against James Hardie entities in New Zealand, Australia, and the Republic of Ireland, for the negligent design, manufacture and supply of products, and breaches of the Fair Trading Act 1986 and Consumer Guarantees Act 1993.

Related expertise

Our lawyers provide clients with clear, strategic and commercial solutions that create lasting impacts to their business