Peter Burnton

Australasia Bridges and Civil Structures Skills Leader

Your best solution to date?
A challenging question with no simple answer because "best" can mean many things and most solutions are found through collaboration. Satisfaction from remote bridges and wharves in PNG that deliver immediate and direct benefit to the local community. Pride in my contribution to many large complex road, rail, maritime, water and industrial projects. Enjoyment from the team wide collaboration and innovation for the Gabba floodlight towers and Go Between Bridge. The confidence gained through developing the construction methodology for the transition structure for the Kimberly microwave tower as a graduate. To pick one then it may be the approach roads to the Brisbane International Terminal.

Why is it significant?
The elevated roads project was a significant D&B project win when the civil structures and bridges teams in Australia comprised probably less than five people. It became the launch pad for what is now a significant business across the region. It stamped the Arup name in this market through several innovations from the approach to vehicle loading on the twin level viaduct, pile design that was 25% less than other bids, hollow core continuous deck solution rather than bridge girders, elimination of movement joints, post tensioned pier frames, steel tubular bracing frames and courageous approach to waterproofing.

Your particular skill?
Concrete structures are my trade but having moved to a relatively small city I have had to diversify finding satisfaction in the interaction between structures and soil, water and wind. I think that my key skill is to identify the critical issues in a project.


Relatively few people are lucky enough to enjoy the work they do. It is then easy to be enthusiastic. I also enjoy guiding and supporting others, watching them grow in ability and confidence.

Why Arup?
I enjoy creating things, finding solutions, being useful in my community and working with collaborative clever people. Arup allows me to do all of these.

Anything else?

I have contributed to the Australian Bridge Design Code for more than a decade and served on an Industry Advisory Board to the School of Civil Engineering at the University of Queensland for approx. 5 years. Each provides different forms of satisfaction. I have a very supportive and understanding wife, my career and Arup owe Hazel heaps!