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Special conference marks 20 years of Asia operation 18 Oct 2018

Geoconsult News Release

Austrian consultant engineering firm Geoconsult recently celebrated the 20 year anniversary of its Asia Singapore office with a technical conference attended by more than 200 guests and employees.

Guests at the 20-year anniversary conference
Guests at the 20-year anniversary conference

“We are a local Singaporean company with Austrian roots and proud to be involved in the most important infrastructure and underground projects here in Singapore and abroad,” said Oskar Sigl, Managing Director of Geoconsult Asia Singapore, as he opened the conference.

“When we started with three engineers in 1996 we were newcomers in Singapore and today we employ about 70 staff. Originally, the intention was that I stay 10 months in Singapore but I am still here,” said Sigl.

After initially supporting contractors as sub-consultant, the company achieved registration with the Singapore Professional Engineers Board in 1998 and was able to participate directly in tenders and become appointed as main or lead consultant.

“Geoconsult Asia Singapore gradually started to employ local people and to grow. We are involved in many underground projects in Singapore like MRT tunnelling, tunnel sewerage systems, cable tunnels, and more. We are not only working in Singapore, but are also active in Hong Kong, Australia, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates,” said Lee Kah Chan, General Manager, who joined the company in 2005.

Geoconsult Group founder Prof Johann Golser (left) with Oskar Sigl (right)
Geoconsult Group founder Prof Johann Golser (left) with Oskar Sigl (right)

Notable projects include Phase 1 of the Deep Tunnel Sewerage System (DTSS), the Transmission Cable Tunnel Project, Stage 2 of the Downtown Line (especially with the design of the stations), and the NorthSouth Corridor tunnels in Singapore, and Line 2 of the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT) in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and an underground cavern project in the Middle East.

Since almost all Geoconsult projects in Singapore are related to infrastructure and public transport systems, the work is positively affecting the lives of many Singaporeans. “We also take pride in training and developing some of the best engineers in Singapore,” said Sigl.

Experience, expertise and confidence is growing with time, and the prestigious Young Tunneller of the Year award for Geoconsult engineer Senthilnath G T in 2016 is just one example of the company's excellent promotion of young talent.

For generating photogrammetric data more efficiently Geoconsult employs multiple drones flying in swarm mode
For generating photogrammetric data more efficiently Geoconsult employs multiple drones flying in swarm mode

During the conference Markus Keuschnig, Managing Director of Georesearch, invited the guests to join him on a futuristic trip into the engineering world of tomorrow. With his presentation, Digitalisation and Construction 4.0: The Future is Now, he gave a fascinating insight into cutting edge technologies and methodologies driving the construction industry, explained technologies supporting the engineering and construction value chain and showed the application of Interferometric Aperture Radar (InSAR) as well as Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) better known as “drones”.

Steven Garlinge, Managing Director of Geodata Koda Australia, gave a presentation on the relevance of monitoring for large underground projects in urban environments and used examples to highlight the special challenges that come with different projects. He described technical monitoring challenges and gave a special view on the complexity of monitoring in urban, densely populated environments.

Logistic cavern with southern access to emergency stop tunnel, Koralm Tunnel, Austria
Logistic cavern with southern access to emergency stop tunnel, Koralm Tunnel, Austria

Gernot Jedlitschka, Managing Director at Geoconsult, Salzburg, Austria, gave an overview of the design and supervision of the long highspeed rail Koralm Tunnel through the Alps considering complex geological conditions and high overburden. The Koralm Tunnel is part of the southern railway in Austria connecting Graz with Klagenfurt. Altogether 100 bridges and 45km of tunnels will be built and the Koralm Tunnel alone will have a length of 32.9km. The 130km double track railway line with a travel speed of 250km/h is planned to be operational from 2025.

Johannes Wageneder, Managing Director of Geoconsult Vienna (Austria), gave an interesting insight into the problems of subway construction in heritage zones in Vienna. He described how the construction impact is assessed, explained the local practices in Vienna with respect to land rights when construction is directly below heritage buildings, and illustrated the authority approvals.

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