The Brazilian Tunnelling Committee (CBT) of the ABMS (Brazilian Association of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering) and the International Tunnelling and Underground Space Association (ITA) are organizing the World Tunnel Congress 2014, to be held in Iguassu Falls, Brazil, May 9-15, at the Bourbon Cataratas Convention & Spa Resort.
Iguassu Falls is famous for its stunning falls and natural beauty, with many species of animals and plants. Focusing on “Tunnels for Better Living,” WTC 2014 will discuss and illustrate the importance of tunnels, especially in big cities, as solutions for traffic jams, flooding, transportation, environmental conservation and also for saving surface areas for nobler uses, such as leisure and human relations.
WTC 2014 will host a large meeting of the Brazilian and international technical community, involving a spectrum of actors – public managers, builders, designers, equipment suppliers, engineering service companies, professors, professionals and students. Together, tunnel experts will discuss and put forward solutions that are most appropriate and used on a global scale. The 40th ITA General Assembly will also take place during the event.
Brazil is experiencing a moment of huge growth that began 10 years ago. It is estimated that this sustainable growth will continue during this decade. Not even the recent financial crisis, which affected the whole world, was able to prevent this progress. Brazil dealt with the crisis and stayed on its course of development.
The benefits of this process are now noticeable in different areas and regions. Unemployment has fallen. Inflation is under control. There has been intensive social mobility. Thirty million Brazilians have joined the middle-class. In the case of investments, there are public and private development projects in infrastructure and civil construction.
In the main cities, the subway lines are undergoing expansion projects, especially in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. São Paulo, Brazil’s main city, plans to have a 200-km long subway by 2018 – which means tripling current lines of 74 km.
Large hydroelectric plants are under construction in the northern region. In the Northeast, other important construction projects are under way, such as the transposition of the waters of the São Francisco River. A further important project, which was already approved, is the underwater tunnel connecting two coastal cities – Santos, home to Brazil’s largest port, and Guarujá, an important coastal resort for people from São Paulo.
Being the venue for two forthcoming internationally relevant sporting events, the FIFA World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016, provides additional motivation for Brazil to grow, involving as it does the construction of soccer stadiums, roads, ports and airports.
For more information about WTC 2014, visit http://www.wtc2014.com.br.