Patrick O'Connell has a leadership background spanning the public and private sectors, and serves as executive director of the U.S. Office of the Chief of Naval Personnel. Previously engaged as interim director of program and strategy with High Speed Rail 2 Ltd. (HS2), Patrick O'Connell led the early stage planning of a major $85-billion UK transportation project designed to link London with cities such as Leeds, Birmingham, and Manchester.
As reported in New Civil Engineer, plans on how to connect Scottish rail links with the English HS2 system are being developed, with a pair of in-depth feasibility studies having been commissioned in 2018.
Sponsored by Transport Scotland, the first study is being undertaken by the Scotland Working Group and focuses on ways of improving specific connections. These include the west coast main line (WCML), which connects Abington with Glasgow, and the east coast main line (ECML), which connects Edinburgh and Newcastle.
With a second study in the works, the plan is to submit a business plan to both the British and Scottish governments by late 2019. HS2 has already had a positive impact on the Scottish economy, with Mott MacDonald placing 300 employees and apprentices on HS2 construction sites along the West Midlands section of the rail route.
The chief of naval personnel for the United States Navy, Patrick O’Connell has more than three decades of public and private senior executive experience.