You are here

Nicholas Carney

Nicholas Carney


Nicholas advises governments and private sector clients on major infrastructure transactions and complex procurements.



Nicholas advises governments and private sector clients in Australia on all aspects of major infrastructure, construction and technology projects, including public private partnerships, divestments and privatisations.

He has experience across the following sectors: transport (rail and wharves), roads, defence, hospitals, social and affordable housing, telecommunications and waste.

He also advises clients on complex and innovative procurements, including those that involve payment for outcomes and social impact investments.

Nicholas has a deep understanding of government processes and policy development which he developed through a secondment in the New South Wales Department of Premier and Cabinet in 2012.

He uses this understanding to assist public and private clients alike.

Nicholas is listed in the 2020 Best Lawyers List for Construction and Infrastructure and  was nominated for New Partner of the Year by Lawyers Weekly in 2019.

Nicholas is the Deputy Chair of Infrastructure Partnerships Australia’s ‘Infrastructure Technology (Infratech) Taskforce’ and he leads the HSF’s Australian focus on Connected and Autonomous Vehicles.

Nicholas’ recent experience includes advising:

  • the Western City and Aerotropolis Authority on all aspects of the masterplanning and development (including in relation to smart infrastructure) for the new Western Parkland City and Western Sydney Aerotropolis
  • Transport for New South Wales on the Circular Quay Precinct Renewal, which involves the use of an innovative strategic market engagement (SME) procurement model to redevelop of the wharves, public realm and station box
  • Rothesay Life in relation to the acquisition of the base rental stream on the Westlink M7 toll road. The transaction was the first of its kind in Australia, effected through a structured assignment of the Base Rent, involving a SPV master trust structure
  • the New South Wales Department of Family and Community Services and New South Wales Treasury on the establishment and first two phases of procurement of the Social and Affordable Housing Fund, which will increase the supply of social and affordable housing dwellings by 3,400 using an innovative contract structure
  • Transurban, QIC and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board in relation to the unsolicited proposal for the design, construction, operation and maintenance of the NorthConnex Toll Road in Sydney



Nicholas holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) from the University of New South Wales. He has also completed the Australian Institute of Company Director’s ‘Company Directors Course’.

Nicholas is admitted as a Solicitor in the Supreme Court of New South Wales.  

Related news and deals

13 January 2023

Herbert Smith Freehills advises the NSW Government on partnership with Techstars

07 December 2022

Herbert Smith Freehills advises Transport for NSW on its partnership with Capella Capital-led consortium to undertake planning and development for Circular Quay renewal

18 November 2022

Herbert Smith Freehills advises Lighthouse Infrastructure on A$61m key worker housing acquisition and financing