2014 October 24
Sanja Zlatanic headlines Women in Transit speaker series at SEPTA
(news quoted from: http://intranet.hntb.org/hntbnews/Lists/Posts/Post.aspx?ID=3889)
As the featured speaker at the Women in Transit speaker series sponsored by the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority, HNTB Chief Tunneling Engineer Sanja Zlatanic presented a two-part presentation – “Crowded cities think BIG UNDERGROUND for their infrastructure solutions.”
The first part of the presentation focused on underground infrastructure and some of the recent tunnel projects she has been involved in since moving to the United States.
The second part of Zlatanic’s presentation was comprised of a Q&A and interactive session, which focused on challenges she faced as a women in a male-dominant environment. Zlatanic shared how she overcame challenges and discussed the role and impact of a mentor as well as lessons learned and advice for the younger female generation in the work force.
“This event was a win-win for our client because Sanja was able to speak about an area of technical expertise that coincides with SEPTA’s business goals, and her presence aligned well with the organization’s advocacy for women in leadership,” Gramian said. “At the same time, she had a very compelling story to tell about her career success in a challenging environment – coming to a country with a different language, balancing her professional and personal responsibilities at home, establishing herself as a technical expert and positioning herself in a leadership role on mission-critical projects.”
MRS. SANJA ZLATANIC OUR SECRETARY-GENERAL AND DIRECTOR OF THE AMERICAS
2014 Women In Transportation: Sanja Zlatanic, PE
Zlatanic is currently managing a project in Instanbul for HNTB Corp.
Born and educated in former Yugoslavia, Sanja Zlatanic graduated in 1988 from Belgrade’s School of Civil Engineering in the top 3% of her class. She earned a degree in structural engineering with a focus on concrete structures. Without delay, she joined Energoprojekt, one of the country’s biggest engineering companies. There, Zlatanic was exposed to a handful of large-scale international projects, including a special project assignment in Iraq.
However, at the start of the civil war in Yugoslavia in 1991, Zlatanic decided to move to the U.S., where she found a job as a structural engineer at Parsons Brinckerhoff, working mainly on the design of complex underground structures and tunnels for transit use.
During her time with Parsons Brinckerhoff, Zlatanic led the design management and technical oversight of East Side Access and the No. 7 Subway Line Extension. Both are notable transit mega-projects of the New York Metropolitan Transportation Authority. She also served as chief engineer from 2006 to 2010 for Access to the Region’s Core, a commuter rail project to increase passenger service capacity on New Jersey transit between Secaucus Junction, N.J. and Manhattan.
“I’ve been lucky over the past 20-plus years to be a part of major public endeavors happening in New York City,” Zlatanic says. “It became logical for me to dedicate my career to underground structures, as I have been fascinated with these mega-projects. With large projects came large responsibilities.”
Zlatanic stayed with Parsons Brinckerhoff until 2011, when an opportunity arose to grow the tunnel practice for HNTB Corp. arose.
In her role as chief tunnel engineer at HNTB, Zlatanic helps identify projects, develops strategy and selects staff. She says she feels personally responsible for quality execution and takes pride in project performance.
“When the client is pleased with the solution we present and we see them reaching out to express their gratitude on the quality of the work, that’s the moment you realize that you have done your duty,” she says. “For an engineer and public servant, this appreciation means everything and is the most rewarding.”
Since starting with HNTB, Zlatanic led the underground engineering group for the Crenshaw LAX project, which will be a part of the Los Angeles County Metro Rail System. It will include a new 8.5-mile light rail line through southwest Los Angeles connecting the Crenshaw District and Leimert Park to Inglewood and the Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Heavy construction began in the spring of 2014, and initial revenue service is projected to begin by 2019.
Currenlty, Zlatanic is managing a project in Istanbul, where HNTB serves as an independent design verifier.
“We are honored to undertake this important role on the iconic project containing the sixth largest underwater tunnel in the world, which will connect Europe and Asia in Istanbul below the Bosphorus Strait,” Zlatanic says. “The project is P3 and the contractor, our client, is a prominent Turkish-Korean joint venture.”
Outside of work, Zlatanic is the secretary general for the Associated Research Centers for the Urban Underground Space (ACUUS). ACUUS is an international organization that encourages partnerships within the urban underground structures field and promotes sustainable use of underground space in order to preserve urban surfaces for better uses.
“With more people moving into cities, these overbuilt and overcrowded urban habitats shouldn’t be jam-packed with surface transit lines,” Zlatanic says. “Communities shouldn’t be divided by large surface cuts or highways. Placing the transit underground frees the surface for increased greenery, parks and recreational uses, which promotes better quality of life and brings people together.”
On Sept.16, 2014, ACUUS signed a memorandum of understanding with the United Nations’ UN-Habitat in New York City, which Zlatanic attended.
“The UN-Habitat finds it very instrumental to tap into our experience to help countries develop sustainable, planned use of the underground,” Zlatanic says.
2014 JUNE 04
HNTB Corporation Deepens Practice to Serve Growing Tunnel and Underground Construction Market
Key tunneling experts hired to help meet growth-oriented market needs; $70 billion in tunnel construction projects expected in North America in the next five years
(article quoted from: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11912656.htm )
Much of the world is moving underground for utilities, transportation infrastructure, water and wastewater, storm protection, power and other systems. To meet current and projected demand, HNTB Corporation has expanded its tunneling practice, increasing its roster of industry veterans significantly in the past year, totaling over 100 professionals throughout the firm.
According to an IBISWorld report, the bridge and tunnel construction industry expanded even in the aftermath of the recession. Tunnel construction, in particular, is expected to continue increasing as city planners view subsurface structures as more efficient ways to use space, according to Nasri Munfah, PE, senior vice president and HNTB chair tunnel services. Industry estimates anticipate $70 billion in tunnel construction projects in North America in the next five years.
“In the United States, North America and Europe, increasing traffic congestion, dwindling right-of-way in urban areas, aging infrastructures are driving demand,” he said. “In other parts of the world, demand for tunnels is due to high population growth, resulting in rapidly expanding urban centers and transportation and infrastructure needs.”
An underground solution for urban growth
In the United States alone, more than 45 tunnel projects – from subways to sewers – are in design, according to a forecast from the Underground Construction Association of the Society for Mining, Metallurgy, and Exploration. Many of those projects underscore tunneling’s ability to provide sustainable solutions to urban areas.
“Tunnels are important elements of our nation’s aging infrastructure,” Munfah said. “They are the preferred sustainable solutions to transportation dilemmas, providing critical multimodal linkage and access routes.”
Taking advantage of underground space allows cities to accomplish progressively denser development while maintaining a less dense surface environment. Once operational, tunnels offer a second set of benefits that above-ground infrastructure cannot, such as superior environmental control and reduced power consumption. But, according to Munfah, those benefits are in addition to the asset’s longevity.
“Tunnels and underground facilities have a service life in the hundreds of years,” Munfah said. “They are economically superior on a life-cycle cost basis.”
Tunnel construction is the answer to some funding questions
Tunnels and underground construction are becoming more viable solutions than in previous decades, due in part to today’s environment of shrinking federal transportation dollars and increased emphasis on funding options.
“Highway tunnels are conducive to tolling, which improves an owner’s ability for project financing and providing public-private partnership opportunities,” said Jim Ely, senior vice president and HNTB chair toll services.
Tunnel industry veterans join HNTB
Munfah predicts the need for tunnels will only grow and says HNTB is well-positioned to address demand. The firm has added six industry veterans to its leadership ranks in the past year:
“The collective expertise of these leaders – in addition to our existing team of experienced staff – help meet the tunneling and underground needs of HNTB’s national and international infrastructure clients,” Munfah said.
In addition to new hires, HNTB chief tunneling engineer, Sanja Zlatanic, PE, recently was named secretary general of Associated research Centers for Urban Underground Space, an international, non-governmental organization dedicated to partnerships among experts who design, analyze and decide upon the use of cities’ underground spaces. Her term runs through 2018.
Earlier this spring, Zlatanic also moderated a networking session during a UN-Habitat conference in Medellin, Colombia, which drew international attention. The presentation, titled “Equity and Equality Opportunities: Cities Think Underground,” shared insights on issues that rapidly expanding cities face while implementing mega infrastructure and transportation projects.
Tackling the world’s most visible tunneling projects
Staff additions not only position HNTB well for future projects, they add to the depth and breadth of expertise the firm brings to its current tunneling projects.
The firm’s current tunnel and underground construction projects include: Sound Transit’s University Link in Seattle; Washington State Department of Transportation’s Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement tunnel in Seattle; Baltimore B&P tunnel; Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project; Elizabeth River Midtown Tunnel in Norfolk, Virginia; Presidio Parkway tunnels in San Francisco; multiple New York City Transit and Amtrak tunnel projects as the result of Superstorm Sandy; and the Istanbul Strait Road Crossing Tunnel project in Turkey.
The Tom Lantos Tunnels at Devil’s Slide – which opened in 2013 and was designed by HNTB Corporation – already have been honored with 15 industry awards, and more are anticipated.