Latest Rail News

26.01.17

CH2M European MD appointed new HS2 chief executive

Mark Thurston, European managing director for the global engineering company CH2M, has been appointed as the new chief executive of HS2.

The post has been filled in by the former HS2 development director Roy Hill for almost three months since Simon Kirby left HS2 to become Rolls Royce’s chief operating officer last November.

Thurston is due to take up the position in the spring of 2017 once he has completed his current responsibilities to CH2M.

HS2 chairman Sir David Higgins said: “Mark not only knows the UK rail industry from the bottom up, but has worked for organisations operating at the highest level globally.

“His grasp of how to manage the transition from page to reality makes him not only the right person to take over at HS2 as we are on the verge of Royal Assent, but also to see it through the years leading up to the first train being commissioned.”

Since joining rail as an apprentice for TfL over three decades ago, Thurston has held various roles with Metronet and the Nichols group.

Thurston joined CH2M nine years ago, working on the 2012 Olympic Games and Crossrail projects before assuming his current role of regional managing director for the company.

Thurston commented on his appointment: “HS2 is arguably the most important investment in infrastructure in the UK for a generation, which will serve businesses and communities across much of the country.

“I am looking forward to leading the HS2 team and its partners to deliver a railway that will transform connectivity between our major cities and regions.”

Thurston was seen as the best candidate by the HS2 board to deliver the project within time and budget while balancing its responsibility between Parliament and the communities affected by the high-speed rail project.

Last week the government agreed to give “fair, reasonable and proportionate” compensation to households which will be affected by noise pollution surrounding the construction of HS2.

(Image c. HS2 Ltd)

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