As a fresh-faced engineering student at Wintec, Lyle Barker ventured across the road to ask Hamilton City Council if he could be accepted as an intern.
Almost 15 years later, he engineers the city’s major infrastructure – from reservoirs to roads.
As a Strategic Infrastructure Programme Engineer for Council, Lyle investigates and plans the city’s major infrastructure that will last for decades to come. Home to more than 170,000 people, Hamilton is one of New Zealand’s fastest growing cities. And futureproofing now is key to ensuring Hamilton continues to be shaped into a city where our people thrive.
Lyle helps to plan and prepare for Hamilton’s future.
“It’s rewarding to see the tangible results of the projects we work on across the city. I get to see the impact of our work and how it improves the wellbeing of Hamiltonians now and in the future.”
From roading to water infrastructure, the projects Lyle works on are big and exciting.
The Transport Hub and a new Ruakura Reservoir are two of his most recent projects.
The $29 million Transport Hub is now a major connection point for the city. It provides a bus interchange, a rail platform, park, and ride facility for rail passengers. Meanwhile, the 12-million litre reservoir provides water storage, pumping capacity and resilience to Hamilton’s eastern water network.
The nature of Lyle’s role means each project is months or years in the making.
“The highlight for me is seeing these big infrastructure projects completed,” Lyle said. “A lot of work goes into our projects, and it’s always rewarding to see the final product used by our community.”
Finding new ways to improve social and environmental outcomes through infrastructure have become an important part of Lyle’s role.
“Sometimes that can involve planning for alternative modes of transport in our roading infrastructure. Or looking at more effective ways to catch stormwater and reuse it. These are the things that can make a huge difference to Hamilton’s future.”
The variety of Lyle’s role has kept things fresh and challenging over the past 15 years. No project is ever the same.
“It’s always dynamic work and we have a great culture. Everyone is working towards the same goal.”
Council will soon introduce a new two-year graduate programme, which will recruit a group of graduates each year.
Lyle wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Council as a place to kickstart your career. It’s a valuable place to learn and grow, particularly if you’re new to an industry.
Working for local government means always keeping the bigger picture in mind, Lyle said.
“We have a huge role to play in improving the wellbeing of our environment, and the people in our city. I love being part of that.”
Have you ever thought about kickstarting your career with Hamilton City Council? We want people who are passionate about our city and driven to make an impact on the community – people who want to shape an awesome Hamilton.