Independent Transportation, Traffic and Planning Advisors


News (22)

 MRCagney is pleased to be sponsoring two Tactical Urbanism Masterclasses in Australia. 

Is your city or town:

  • Trying to create vibrant, active public spaces?
  • Seeking new tools for more effective community engagement?
  • Looking for ways to gather better evidence so you can plan with greater certainty?
  • Trying to deliver more with less?
  • Tactical Urbanism can help. This internationally proven approach to neighbourhood building can help you transform places and build stronger communities through low-cost, short-term improvements to streets and public spaces. 

What topics will the forum cover?

We will challenge everyday thinking about the way we create places, spaces, and neighbourhoods through:•Low-cost strategies for bringing underused local spaces to life.

  • Community placemaking.
  • Engaging local communities and building support for projects.
  • Evaluating projects, so you can plan with greater certainty.
  • Tactical urbanism for local government - how to manage risk and expectations.
  • Rapid community building strategies for urban infill and greenfield developments.

Why attend?

  • Be inspired by global case studies and international experts in tactical urbanism.
  • Learn practical tools to implement fast changes in your local area through a practical exercise.
  • Hear from local and global experts on how to make things happen, navigating risk and permits.
  • Gain useful insights on how a tactical approach might help generate creative solutions for your problem space.
  • Networking opportunities with like minded practitioners.

Sydney: June 18, featuring Mike Lydon author ot Tactical Urbanism. Register here.

Melbourne: June 24, featuring Stephen Yarwood former Lord Mayor of the City of Adelaide. Register here.


We are looking for an economist to join either our Brisbane or Auckland offices. The successful applicant is likely to be involved in the following types of projects:

  • Business cases for major transport investments;
  • Economic analysis of transport and land use policies;
  • Innovative models for delivering transport infrastructure & services;
  • Benchmarking of transport and land use outcomes;
  • Transportation pricing and policy reforms; and
  • Management consulting, especially strategic policy advice.

More details can be found here.

Auckland Transport has recently awarded the MRCagney Auckland office a commute award for Embedding Sustainable Transport into Company Practice

MRCagney has a goal of 100 per cent non-car journey to work mode share. Of our 15 full time staff, 14 people use public transport, walk, or cycle to get to work. This high non-car mode share has been achieved through a variety of management policies and company practices, many of which were set in place through a workplace travel plan first developed in 2009. 



1 July 2014.

Today we are proud to celebrate the 14th anniversary of the formation of MRCagney (formerly McCormick Rankin Cagney).

As of today, company founder Neil Cagney will be transitioning to a new role as Chairman of the Board, focussing on the broader strategic aspects of our growth strategy.

Les Carter has been appointed as our new Managing Director, taking over from the role that Neil has held since the company's inception. To support Les, we are also pleased to announce that Paul Matthews has been appointed Chief Operating Officer.

Al Ain street sceneMRCagney are embarking on our first project in the Middle East, helping to prepare a plan for the development of public transport in the city of Al Ain in the Abu Dhabi emirate. The fourth largest city in the United Arab Emirates, Al Ain is located 120km inland and is home to 600,000 people.

As part of a consortium led by Transpo Group, MRCagney are partnering with the renowned UK consultancy, Integrated Transport Planning, to develop a staged twenty year plan for the city's bus-based public transport system. Considering all aspects of the city's bus needs, the plan will provide recommendations for the incremental improvement of their current system, enabling them to achieve their vision of a network of BRT corridors connecting key centres.

MRCagney are also providing best practice advice on the Complete Streets principles that encompass the integrated multi-modal planning required to shape the city's CBD into an attractive, connected and pedestrian friendly environment.

Steven Burgess has recently relocated from the Sunshine Coast to Melbourne, as our new Regional Manager (Victoria). One of his first tasks has been to move our Melbourne office to its new home in Elsternwick.

The new address and contact details for our Melbourne office are as follows:

Over the last two years, MRCagney has been assisting Auckland Transport to develop their plan for a new public transport network.
Based around our core principals of providing frequent, connected services supported by further tiers of service including secondary local routes, peak-hour expresses and school routes, the proposed network will radically increase the number and usefulness of services available to Auckland's populace.
AT have now released an excellent video explaining the proposed new network and how it will be implemented over the coming years. Full credit to them, as this is one of the best examples we have seen of how to explain complex network changes to the public.
or here:
MRCagney is now offering our clients in NSW locally based expertise in traffic engineering, development impact assessment and local area transport planning.
MRCagney are celebrating the opening of our new Sydney office, in an appropriately transit oriented location in Surry Hills, overlooking Central Station. Building on the success of recent projects in Sydney and regional NSW, Barry Watkins has been appointed as Regional Manager (NSW/ACT) to guide our growth in these markets.
Through developing a permanent presence in Australia's largest city, we are committed to better serving our clients' needs throughout New South Wales and the ACT. Drawing on the specialist skills of the entire MRCagney team, we offer a comprehensive and unique suite of independent advisory services across the transit, transport, traffic and planning fields.
Details of our new Sydney office are contained in our Contacts page.
and changes are on their way for our Melbourne office too... stay tuned for news!

MRCagney is preparing to mobilise for consulting work relating to the enhancement of the performance of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, TransJakarta, in Jakarta Indonesia. This follows a successful proposal developed in response to a Request for Tender issued in July 2012. The work is funded by AusAID, the Australian Agency for International Development and forms part of AusAID’s Indonesia Infrastructure Initiative (IndII) Facility, managed by SMEC International on behalf of AusAID. IndII’s goal is to promote economic growth by working with the Government of Indonesia to enhance infrastructure policy, planning and investment.

The main objective of the consultancy is to provide technical assistance to the TransJakarta office, to enhance the performance of the BRT system with respect to the following:

  • Increase the ridership on the system, in particular commuters who make use of private transport;
  • Enhancing the efficiency of the BRT system’s operations, and improving TransJakarta’s profitability (cost and revenues structure); and
  • Ensure the strategic sustainability of the BRT system with enhanced planning and management methods, and staff capability development

This includes assisting Transjakarta complete its transformation to a government business enterprise. The assignment is of 16 Months duration and will include a number of MRCagney’s principal consultants in full and part-time roles.  Assistance will be provided to the core MRCagney team by a number of local and international sub-consultant partners.

Jabodetabek, the metropolitan area encompassing Jakarta and the surrounding local governments and provinces is home to some 25 million inhabitants.  Over the past 10 years, the car population in the Jabodetabek metropolitan area  has more than doubled while the motorcycle population has more than tripled. As a result, travel speeds are decreasing from some 25 km/hr to about 10 km/hr on key southern corridors.

The Government of Indonesia has been responding to these trends, with a comprehensive set of plans and measures to develop transport services and infrastructure, so as to alleviate the congestion and provide alternative public transport services.

The BRT system today operates along 11 corridors, carrying some 360,000 passengers daily. The operation is carried out under the TransJakarta brand name but is fully under the control of DKI Transport Agency (Dishub). 4 more BRT lines are being planned.

The operation is considered moderately successful but estimations are that it is operating much below design capacity, and a number of development and external factors are hampering its optimal performance. At the same time, the city’s other 4,000 busses operate alongside the BRT. While these buses are also under the authority of the Dishub, the bus routes are not fully coordinated and do not provide adequate feeding functions to the BRT.

Despite growing ridership, the cost recovery ratio for TransJakarta is dropping, from 89% in 2004 to 62% today. Dishub thus has to provide ever larger subsidies, and therefore enhancing efficiency, improving load factors and revenue collection to reduce costs is clearly a DKI priority.

To achieve more professional management, TransJakarta is in the process of being transformed from a Public Service Body under DKI Transportation Agency to become a Local-owned enterprise (BUMD). The management structure and skills will need to be enhanced and made more professional, with support in fleet management, tracking systems and ticketing.

MRCagney has been engaged to provide guidance and assistance with this very important transformation.  This assignment follows the successful completion of an assignment by MRCagney for IndII in the Indonesian City of Palembang during 2011.

The NSW Government recently announced the award of four new Sydney metropolitan bus service contracts, following a competitive tendering process. The new contracts are expected to deliver $18M a year in savings. The full media release can be viewed here

MRCagney has been assisting Transport for NSW with the review of tenders and selection of  succesful tenderers, calling on the more than 100 years of combined experience that our Transit practice offers in public transport operations, management and procurement.




MRCagney worked with Auckland Transport on a “clean-slate” redesign of Auckland’s bus, rail and ferry system. The goal was to develop a simple legible and frequent network while working with existing service budgets. Our design approach focussed first on developing a network of high-frequency routes that operated at 15 minute frequencies or better all-day and all-week. 

The primary network was then supplemented by more targeted services, such as peak and school service, where required. This hierarchical approach enabled us to assign resources efficiently, while maintaining a base level of coverage across the wider Auckland region.

Core planning workshops and subsequent revisions were undertaken with Auckland Transport operations staff and key stakeholders (including operators and local government), ensuring that the proposed routings were practical and deliverable. Patronage data was compiled from across Auckland’s service operators and combined with population and employment statistics to shed light on current and future demand patterns. Best-practice public transport network design theory was then applied within the opportunities and constraints of the Auckland context, taking into account strategic land use and transport objectives.

Before-and-after analysis revealed that the proposed network delivers a threefold increase in the proportion of residents living within 500m of frequent, all-day service. The network also involves a 10% reduction in peak fleet requirements, which will reduce the impact of buses on sensitive pedestrian environments.  Finally, the new network has two-thirds fewer individual bus routes (down from 360 to 118), which results in a much more legible network.

Stakeholder and public feedback has been universally positive, with the new network described by many as “transformational.”   Further information is available from the Auckland Transport website -

MRCagney, in association with O'Brien Traffic, will be hosting our next one-day workshop in Melbourne on Thursday, March 8.

Steven Burgess will present the event, following on from his successful series of workshops in Queensland, South Australia and New Zealand over the past year. The course brochure can be downloaded here which includes information on payment methods.

Online registration and credit card payment is also available at

Following from the successful launch of his book 'Human Transit', our Associate Transit Consultant, Dr Jarrett Walker, was recently interviewed on Sydney radio station, 2GB. During the interview, he discusses the challenges of bus network planning in Sydney, and highlights comparisons to other world cities. You can listen to the MP3 of the interview here.

Following on from his successful series of workshops throughout parts of Australia and New Zealand over the past year, Steven Burgess is planning to present in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane in 2012.

The outline of his one-day workshop "The Lost Art of Street Design" can be downloaded here.

Further details will be made available soon.

We're pleased to announce that MRCagney's Associate Transit Specialist and regular blogger, Jarrett Walker, has released his first book. 

Human Transit: How Clearer Thinking about Public Transit Can Enrich Our Communities and Our Lives is a culmination of Jarrett's experiences and approaches to transit planning from his 20 years in the industry. Published by Island Press and available through many great online booksellers including Amazon, the book is available now. Jarrett's regular blog can be viewed at



Public transit is a powerful tool for addressing a huge range of urban problems, including traffic congestion and economic development as well as climate change. But while many people support transit in the abstract, it's often hard to channel that support into good transit investments.; Part of the problem is that transit debates attract many kinds of experts, who often talk past each other.; Ordinary people listen to a little of this and decide that transit is impossible to figure out.

Jarrett Walker believes that transit can be simple, if we focus first on the underlying geometry that all transit technologies share. In Human Transit, Walker supplies the basic tools, the critical questions, and the means to make smarter decisions about designing and implementing transit services.

Human Transit explains the fundamental geometry of transit that shapes successful systems; the process for fitting technology to a particular community; and the local choices that lead to transit-friendly development. Whether you are in the field or simply a concerned citizen, here is an accessible guide to achieving successful public transit that will enrich any community.


On 1 July 2011, we celebrated our eleventh anniversary with a change of name and the start of our rebranding process.

MRCagney is seeking to expand its Civil Design Team in Brisbane. We are keen to hear from Senior and Principal level candidates, with established professional profiles in south-east Queensland. Further information is available on our Careers page.

Tom has recently joined us following a long career in the public sector, most recently in a Senior Executive Role in the Department of Territory & Municipal Services in the ACT Government.

In December 2010, McCormick Rankin Cagney's Australasian staff completed a buyout of the 50% ownership previously held by Canadian consultancy, MMM.

We are pleased to announce that Steven Burgess has joined McCormick Rankin Cagney, in the role of Principal Consultant.

Following our strong growth in 2010, MRCagney has been pleased to welcome three new appointments in recent months.