About us

Macdonald Barnett was founded in 1956 by A J (Joe) Macdonald. Initially the practice focused on the design and project management of a wide range of commercial and residential buildings including hospitals, wineries, manufacturing and storage buildings, and associated civil works. Cliff Barnett joined the practice soon after and was instrumental in the development of Fire Engineering as a new field of Professional Engineering both within New Zealand and internationally.

The primary focus of the practice today is Fire Engineering.  Our team of Chartered Professional lead Fire Engineers core work is fire safety design of the entire range of building types using Building Code Compliance Document based analysis or Alternative Solution based analysis when a conventional design basis is not appropriate.  We are listed on the Auckland Council as Producer Statement author register (PS1, 2 & 4) for high risk design work and also as approved peer reviewers and for construction monitoring.  Our fire engineering team members are also engaged in litigation as Professional experts to the Courts; Serving on MBIE and Standards New Zealand working groups in relation to Compliance Documents updating; ACENZ judging panel for engineering awards of design excellence.  

We also provide a Structural Engineering service, which is primarily focused on failure cause investigation and reinstatement, expert reporting in litigation, primarily for the insurance industry. The practice provides professional design and project management services in fire safety and structural engineering for multi-story, institutional, commercial, residential and industrial buildings.

The practice offers a comprehensive consulting design and peer review service which includes the fire safety and structural engineering aspects of multi-story and large single story warehouse, manufacturing,  retail, medical services buildings, tanks and other special structures. The practice has successfully completed over 10,000 engagements with the private sector, Government and other institutional bodies,

The broad base of experience has led to numerous engagements of an investigative nature, including building and equipment failures and deaths by accident, and fire, and for leading to the preparation of Engineering Reports for legal and insurance Clients covering due diligence, accidents, failures, fire cause and other insurances claims, fire and earthquake risk appraisals.

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