Our History

What started as a workforce of 2, more than 50 years later has grown to a staff of over 60 in 3 offices across the length of the country.

The 1960s

In 1965 Don Airey set up a practice with local surveyor, Bill Birch (later Sir William Birch) as the engineer in the predominantly surveying practice of DN Boak and Partners which had offices in Takapuna, Orewa, Howick, Te Aroha, and Pukekohe.

Shortly afterwards he employed Lynne Lawrie as a Draughtswoman in the Pukekohe office and Murray Smith as an Engineer located in Takapuna and at offices of then Hopper Bros Ltd.

A few years later the partners in DN Boak & Partners decided that they would separate their own offices into individual partnerships, and consequently, the partnership of Birch & Airey was formed at the Pukekohe Office.

The 1970s

In 1972 when Bill Birch was elected to Parliament, Don Airey decided to separate his relationship from Birch & Airey and formed a purely engineering firm, DC Airey & Partners. In the years that followed, Don was joined by Russell Watt – an engineer at the Pukekohe Office, and Tony Corbett (1974) who was based with Easdale and Partners (Surveyors) in their Howick office. Murray Smith had already relocated back to Takapuna and Rex Dawson continued working with Hopper Bros at Whangaparaoa.

The 1980s

As the decade progressed, several new significant clients engaged the services of an ever-expanding Airey Consultants Ltd team for large projects, particularly the Pauanui Ocean Beach Resorts project on the eastern Coromandel Coast, and the Three Guys Supermarkets around the Auckland and Waikato area.

When Consulting Engineers were permitted to form Limited Liability companies, in 1984 DC Airey and Partners was incorporated into Airey Consultants Ltd. Much of the work of Airey Consultants Ltd over those years related to land development work which was undertaken in association with the survey firms, engineering for Local Authority projects and structural engineering for a range of Architects.

In October 1989, Roger Twiname and Ian Gibson were appointed Directors.

Michael Lee who joined Airey in 1990 was appointed as Director at Takapuna, in 1997.

The 1990s

In 1992 the first of our major canal housing projects was started in Pauanui. This was followed with another canal housing project at Whitianga and the opening an office in Whitianga.

The work as Project Engineer for Whitianga was taken over in 2008 from Murray Smith by James Greenwood who went on to be appointed Project Engineer for the next canal housing project at Marsden Cove adjacent to the Whangarei Harbour.

In 1995, Airey Consultants were engaged as Consulting Engineers for a development at Queenstown known as Remarkables Park. This project covers an area of 150 ha, located on the south side of Queenstown Airport and has been an ongoing development which has included new roading through the airport and a new intersection on SH6 for access to the airport and Remarkables Park.

Don Airey retired from the company in 1995.

To respond to the needs in the area, we opened another local office in Orewa in 1996 with Peter Kibblewhite as the manager.

The 2000s

In 2004, James Greenwood (Orewa), Mike Williams (Pukekohe) and David McKenzie (Howick) were appointed as Directors.

To support the Remarkable Park, Queenstown project an office was established in the area in 2006. This office has steadily grown and now has a staff of 6 Engineers and draftsmen providing both Civil and Structural Engineering design services.

Russell Watt retired from the company in 2002 and Murray Smith retired as a Director in 2009 but has continued working part-time as a Project Manager.

The 2010s

In 2010 the Queenstown Office was formally established and Justin Ralston was appointed as Senior Engineer to manage the office.

Airey was extensively involved in the Christchurch earthquake recovery effort. Shortly after the February 22nd 2011 earthquake. Two directors, Ian Gibson and Roger Twiname, assisted with the IPENZ emergency building inspection program. Shortly afterwards the Christchurch City Council and Civil Defence invited consultancies from around New Zealand to provide their services in a Council run effort to assist with rapid building response. We were quick to respond sending down groups of two engineers on an ongoing weekly basis.

In 2012 the Orewa Office was merged with the Takapuna Office to enhance the Civil Engineering capabilities of that office.

In 2015 we turned 50 years old, a celebration of this achievement was held with many past and present clients, staff and directors attending.

In 2017, the Howick and Pukekohe offices joined forces and relocated to a new office in Botany Town Centre. This enables us to service the needs of all clients, Auckland through to Franklin.

In 2018, Ian Gibson retired as a Director after 37 years with the company but continued to work as a consultant until February 2022 when he fully retired from the company.

The 2020s

Airey Consultants acquired the structural engineering firm Stroude Limited, and Manu Withers joined the company as a Director.

In 2020, Roger Twiname stepped down as a Director and continues to provide advice and peer review services.

In April 2021, Royden Tsui assumed the role of Associate Director.

In October 2021, Airey Consultants purchased Morconsult and integrated it into their Botany branch to enhance their structural team's capabilities. Andrew Mortimer, the former owner of Morconsult, now collaborates with Airey as a consultant and advisor for structural and business matters.

In April 2022, Ashley Watson and Mitchell Roberts were appointed as Associate Directors to succeed Michael Lee, who was approaching retirement.

In April 2023, after 33 years of service, Michael Lee retired as a director. Following his retirement, Luoman Li and Nate van der Merwe were named Associate Directors.

Over the past 50 years, Airey Consultants Ltd has established itself as a reputable and successful company, thanks to the continuous support of their dedicated and growing team of employees. Some of these employees have been with the company for over 25 years, contributing their expertise and experience to the firm's success. This long-term commitment and loyalty from staff members have been a key factor in maintaining the company's stability and reputation.