The former boss of Costain, Network Rail and more recently the Olympic Delivery Authority has evidently become the nation’s go-to engineer for any national problems. He also takes over this month as chairman of City & Guilds and is in line to become president of the Institution of Civil Engineers in 2015. He is alos on the board of Transport for London and the advisory board of Siemens.
Labour leader Ed Miliband and his shadow chancellor Ed Balls have persuaded him “to draw up plans for a commission or process, independent of government, that can assess and make proposals on the long term infrastructure needs of our country over the coming decades”.
Mr Balls revealed the appointment of Sir John Armitt in his speech to the Labour party conference today.“Successive governments – including our own – have ducked or delayed vital decisions on our national infrastructure, allowing short-term politics to come first,” he said. “We need a comprehensive long-term plan to rebuild Britain’s infrastructure for the 21st century, and a cross-party consensus to deliver it.”