In with the new

26 February 2014

In a Finnish conference hall in 2011, Sao Paulo hammered both Singapore and Sydney, and was selected to host the World Tunnel Congress in 2014.

Every WTC seems to have its own quirks, and WTC 2014's might be that it will not be in the original city put forward in the bid, but rather at a resort located near the Iguassu Falls, a natural wonder of the world.

One story is that the organisers returned, surprised by success, to cement arrangements for the show with local facility managers, only to find that the FIFA World Cup had inflated hotel and venue prices.

Whatever the reason, the end result an additional airport changeover, two-hour flight, and a five-night minimum stay as standard across the local hotels.

The upshot is that we should not be surprised to see a greater number of junior engineers in attendance, as seniors pass over this now awkward event, in an already crowded calendar. Even the ITA sessions are expected by some to be sparsely peopled.

But maybe this is not entirely a bad thing.

For the past year, young tunnel engineers have been in communication as only the millennial generation can. They have been forming Young Members' societies in as many ITA Member Nations as possible in preparation for the possible birth of an ITA Young Members' group. With this slated as early as the upcoming event in Iguassu Falls, a throng of young engineers could give this show a new excitement.

It could be the young engineers' WTC in Brazil this May, aptly hosted by a country experiencing a new dawn in underground construction after years of stagnation.

It's worth a flight