The 10-member group includes landscape architects, architects, engineers and others and will champion design excellence in all new national infrastructure, lobby to ensure design is considered at the beginning and at all stages of major projects.
Grant will promote the importance of landscape and environmental design as integral parts of major infrastructure schemes and highlight the importance of biodiversity and addressing the challenges of climate change, drawing on his and Grant Associates’ experience. The practice’s current projects include Curzon Street railway station for HS2 and a masterplan for Castellana Norte - a new district in northern Madrid.
National Infrastructure Commissioner chaiprofessor Sadie Morgan said the Design Group’s formation hailed a "pivotal moment" for the future of UK infrastructure.
Grant said: "In the context of global actions on climate change, biodiversity loss, human migration and massive urbanisation then I believe landscape planning and design is fundamental to creating a sustainable and resilient built environment, helping to minimise the environmental impact of major projects and delivering a better quality of life for all.
"In my mind our national infrastructure is akin to our life support system and embraces our natural green and blue infrastructure as well as the traditional elements of energy, transport etc.
"It follows that I’m delighted to be appointed to the NIC’s Design Group and will be looking to ensure landscape and ecological design excellence is embedded within the design principles and procurement strategies for future infrastructure projects."
The new group is expected to meet at least four times a year. The other members are:
• Professor Sadie Morgan (Chair) – Architectural Designer – National Infrastructure Commissioner and Founding Partner of dRMM Architects
• Isabel Dedring – Lawyer and Management Consultant – Global Transport Leader at Arup
• Anthony Dewar – Civil Engineer – Professional Head, Buildings and Architecture at Network Rail
• Clare Donnelly – Architect – Director at Fereday Pollard Architects
• Professor Hanif Kara – Structural Engineer – Co-founder and Design Director of AKT II
• Madeleine Kessler – Architect – Haptic Architects
• Lucy Musgrave – Urban Designer – Founding Director of Publica
• Judith Sykes – Civil Engineer – Director at Expedition Engineering
• Louise Wyman – Chartered Surveyor and Landscape Architect – Design Lead for the West Midlands Combined Authority
The first National Infrastructure Assessment, published by the Commission last year, set out the benefits of effective design and how it can help with UK development and its challenges. Three members of the design group informed the design recommendations in the assessment. One of the places on the group is reserved for a representative from the Commission’s Young Professionals Panel.