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Peter McBean Partner

Peter’s role as Director allows him to continue his passion for engineering by engaging in and leading many flagship projects across the business. Over his 35 years experience as a consulting structural engineer, Peter has fostered an expert capability in structural dynamics and earthquake engineering. In addition to design activities, Peter is an active Australian Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force Engineer.

Following the devastating Christchurch earthquake of February 2011, Peter spent two weeks within the city, providing structural engineering advice to the Australian USAR response team whilst experiencing over 200 after-shocks. For his work in Christchurch, Peter was awarded the Humanitarian Overseas Service Medal by the Australian Government.

The first-hand experience of witnessing the devastation in Adelaide’s sister city cemented Peter’s purpose in the field of seismic engineering. He has since been instrumental in changing industry focus and reinforcing the critical responsibility and accountability of engineers to deliver built environments that adequately consider the potential impact of earthquakes in their design.

Peter is an advocate for seismic design and promotes best practice seismic principles across public and private sector organisations. This was most evident in his role as Structural Engineering Design Director for the Royal Adelaide Hospital. Completed in 2017, the $2.2b project was the first building in Australia to be fully compliant with the intent of changes made to Australian design standards, that now require buildings with a post disaster role to remain operational following a moderate to severe earthquake.

Holding a number of professional advisory and industry roles, Peter is a Fellow of The Institution of Engineers Australia a Chartered Professional Engineer, was National President for the Australian Earthquake Engineering Society (2016-2019) and is the Seismic expert on the Engineers Australia National Infrastructure Advisory Panel. In addition, Peter is a member of Standards Australia Code Committee BD-006-11, which is responsible for Earthquake Actions in Australia, AS1170.4 and the Code Committee BD-002 responsible for AS3600 “Concrete Structures”. This standard was extensively revised in 2018 to reflect seismic design changes arising from the Canterbury Earthquake Royal Commission in New Zealand. Peter was the co-author of these design changes.

Peter has authored numerous journal articles and conference papers on earthquake engineering and was the joint recipient of Engineers Australia’s RW Chapman Medal in 2019 for his research and contribution to the paper “RC walls in Australia: seismic design detailing to AS1170.4 and AS3600”. Peter also co-authored the Steel Reinforcement Institute of Australia’s new publication “Guide to Seismic Design and Detailing of Reinforced Concrete Buildings in Australia”.

Recognised for his dedication to structural engineering, Peter was awarded the 2020 John Connell Gold Medal, the highest award presented by the Structural College of Engineers Australia, in recognition of his “Outstanding contribution to structural engineering in Australia”.

Contact Peter