Information on Infrastructure Projects
Governments seek to keep the community informed of proposed new infrastructure projects, often from the time of inception. There is public interest in community impacts, benefits, costs and delivery timetables. An early announcement of intent naturally creates questions, and, in the case of small and simple projects, those questions can often be answered from the beginning. However, in the case of larger and more complex projects, the level of reliable detail about community impacts, costs, benefits and delivery program increases over time and as the project progresses. Confidence in project details grows as options are considered, concepts are refined, site conditions are investigated, designs are progressed, environmental approvals are obtained and construction contractors are engaged in the process.
The Information On Infrastructure Projects Guide explains the stages of project development and the level of detail that may be confidently provided to the public at each stage.
The Guide is a Premier’s Memorandum (M2022-06) and applies to ministers, agencies and State Owned Corporations.
The guiding principles for providing reliable project information are as follows:
- Confidence in cost and delivery timeframe increases as project progresses.
- Where specific detail is not yet available, there is still useful information that can be provided to the public.
- In early stages, Government can clearly communicate its intent to address a need and the steps it proposes to take to provide a solution.
- Premature provision of detail on solutions, scope, costs and timeframes may lead to disappointment in the community and counterproductive pressure on project delivery teams. Early detail on project scope can undermine project teams’ assessment of alternative investment options which curtails long-term value creation.
- By contrast, effective communication as stages proceed provides confidence that decision making is sound, that public funds are being well managed and that project benefits will be delivered.
The Guide and Premier’s Memorandum M2022-06 replaces the DPC Circular ‘C2020-22 Timely information on infrastructure projects and transactions with the non-government sector’.