Planning expertise gave the two firms the advantage
The firms edged other rivals because of their planning law expertise, a report from Legal Week said. The formalisation of their mandates come as BLP and Pinsent Masons have already been working with Heathrow’s legal team on earlier stages of the project.
BLP planning partners Tim Smith and James Good, as well as Pinsents infrastructure planning head Robbie Owen and planning partner Francis Tyrell, are said to be part of the firms’ teams.
Last year, the hot-button project was given the green light by the government, prompting Heathrow to initiate a competitive tender process for spots on the project’s advisory panel.
In addition to appointing BLP and Pinsents, Heathrow has also hired a head of legal planning, Legal Week said. This official, who will be named shortly, will supervise the project panel’s 11 sub-panels. Pinsents is said to have been appointed to nine while BLP was appointed to two.
Earlier this year, it was revealed that DLA Piper and Allen & Overy have pocketed substantial fees from the project, with the former paid $1.89m for advice between August 2015 and October 2016 and the latter paid $261,000.
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