It is with great sadness that colleagues announced the unexpected death of Bradford Townsend on 25 December at his home in Bridgewater New Hampshire in the USA. Bradford had joined the Washington DC office of engineering firm Dr Sauer & Partners in early 2015.
Bradford Field Townsend, 60, had a career in the construction and engineering industry that spanned more than 40 years, beginning as a general contractor in Northern New England and transitioning into geotechnical and structural engineering that allowed him to work on major civil engineering projects throughout the world.
Townsend obtained a BS degree in Natural/Environmental Science at Johnson State College in Johnson Vermont in 1979 and a MS in Civil Engineering at the University of New Hampshire, Durham in 1985.
In 1979, he became the owner and manager of Lone Pine Construction, concentrating on residential and light commercial projects. After qualifying as an engineer, Bradford continued to operate Lone Pine as a construction and engineering company, which he considered as his pride and joy.
In college, Townsend developed an interest in the engineering aspects of construction. He began his engineering career in 1986 working in Boston on projects involving geotechnical and structural foundation design, soil and rock excavation, and numerous projects requiring tunneling construction. Tunneling was his engineering focus in later years and he become a respected tunneling expert.
In 1993, his career led him to North Africa and Asia to work on large scale civil engineering projects in Egypt and Thailand; tunnel construction for a highway system in Vietnam; and Technical Director for civil and tunneling structures for the high speed rail project in Taiwan where he met his wife, Sandie Kuo.
After returning to the United States in 2005, Townsend assumed a prominent role in the civil engineering and tunneling community, chairing the North American Tunneling Conference, publishing several articles for the North American Tunneling and ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers) Journals, and speaking professionally at a variety of global engineering conferences.
Colleagues recall: “Brad cherished his time at home on Bridgewater Hill with his with his wife, Sandie Kuo. He had a love for the land and appreciated the close-knit community. He enjoyed motor biking, skiing and the true spirit of holidays.”
Townsend is survived by his wife, his mother and his sister. The family invites donations in his honour to the St Jude Children’s Hospital