Australia’s Federal Government establishes the WSA Co to manage Western Sydney Airport

In May-2017, Australia’s Federal Government committed AUD5.3 billion over the next 10 years towards the development of the Western Sydney Airport. It was announced that the government planned to establish a government-owned company to manage the development process and ensure the airport was operational by 2026. Yesterday, Australia’s Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development announced the establishment of the WSA Co.

To coincide the company launch, has also been released which includes information on the company’s new board of directors, objectives and activities.

Board of Directors:

The first four directors have been appointed to the company’s Board, with future appointments expected soon.

Chair: Paul O’Sullivan

Mr O’Sullivan has been the Chairman of Optus since October 2014. Mr O’Sullivan was previously CEO of Singtel Group Consumer from 2012–2014 where he was responsible for operations in both Singapore and Australia, as well as Singtel investments.

Mr O’Sullivan previously served as CEO of Optus from September 2004 to March 2012 and prior to this held a range of senior positions within Optus. Mr O’Sullivan currently serves as a Director on several Boards including Coca-Cola Amatil, Healthscope, the NDIA and HOOQ.

Director: Fiona Balfour

Mrs Balfour is on the Board of Airservices Australia, and is a member of the Audit and Risk, Technology and Investment, and Remuneration and Human Resources committees.

Mrs Balfour has over 35 years’ experience across aviation, information and telecommunication services, distribution and logistics and corporate governance. She spent 14 years with Qantas Airways Limited, and served six years on the Executive Committee whilst in the role of Chief Information Officer. Mrs Balfour currently sits on numerous boards including Metcash, Salmat and Australian Red Cross Blood Service. She is a former director of Société Internationale de Télécommunications Aéronautiques (‘SITA-SC’) Geneva, TAL (Dai-ichi Life) Australia and a number of not for profits.

Director: Tim Eddy

Mr Eddy has over 30 years of experience leading and managing in a professional services environment, including most recently as Managing Partner Operations, Oceania at Ernst & Young.

Throughout his career he has developed specific expertise in a range of areas including: global/national transformation and change; developing new service offerings; growth strategies for business operations; and driving sound financial outcomes.

Mr Eddy is a Fellow of the Chartered Accountants Australia & New Zealand and a graduate of Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Director: Christine Spring

Ms Spring is an expert in aviation infrastructure development and airport operations, as well as a civil engineer with approximately 20 years’ experience. She has international experience in aviation infrastructure delivery, including in New Zealand, Australia, the United Arab Emirates, Asia and the Pacific Islands.

Ms Spring is currently on the board of Auckland Airport, where her experience in aviation infrastructure and executive management is contributing to implementing its 30-year vision for the airport of the future. Ms Spring is also a Director of structural engineering firm Holmes GP Structures Ltd and Unison Networks Ltd.


Enabling activities

The physical activities for the site have been determined. Known as enabling activities these are conducted before the main airport works construction program begins. These include:

  • Geotechnical investigations and bedrock analysis including over 100 additional boreholes in the runway and taxiway areas.
  • Land survey (including cadastral surveying to map the site and feature surveys), services locations and aerial photography.
  • A 12-month program of air and noise monitoring both before and during construction works.
  • Site decontamination work to identify, and correctly manage any contaminated materials before major works begin.
  • Relocation of a 330-kilovolt high-voltage TransGrid transmission line from overhead to an underground cable route.
  • Initial bulk earthworks to move approximately 1 million cubic metres of soil, and potential stockpiling for on-site fill materials.

Source: Objectives and biographies sourced from