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From the Göta Tunnel and Partihallsförbindelsen to the West Link

We in the West Link: Anders Hansson, specialist in geotechnical engineering, talks about his role in the project.

What is your background and how did you get involved in the West Link Project?

I'm a civil engineer from Chalmers University and have worked with geotechnical engineering since graduating in 1991: the first years as a consultant and then as a contractor.

To a large extent it was the West Link Project that attracted me to the Swedish Transport Administration and I started working here in 2011. In the past, I have worked on a number of large projects in Gothenburg such as the Göta Tunnel and Partihallsförbindelsen.

What does your role entail?

My role entails being the project's specialist support in geotechnical matters such as excavations in soil and the founding of tunnels and bridges. I also make sure that the regulations of the Transport Administration within the field of geotechnical engineering are fulfilled. It could then be a question of ground settlements, stability and their impact on our installations and surroundings.

What is the greatest challenge of the West Link Project from your point of view?

The greatest challenge is the deep shafts and excavations that are to be driven in the loose clay that we have in Gothenburg. In the case of the West Link, it involves excavation depths that have never been experienced here before. There will be a significant focus on inspection and follow-up with regard to the surrounding impact since we will be working in an urban environment.

How do you meet the challenge?

By drawing up carefully considered peconditions for the contractors' work. Good cooperation with our consultants and future contractors is also an important precondition.

What do you like the most about your work?

Being part of a large and important project like the West Link is inspiring in itself. As far as my technical area is concerned, the geotechnical conditions are always unique for the specific place in question. We admittedly know a lot about the clay in Gothenburg. But for a project that is as large as the West Link, we will gain more knowledge and experience to pass on to future projects.

What do you do to relax?

When I need to relax, I go for a walk – preferably in the woods and countryside, but going for a walk in the area where I live is also relaxing. I also enjoy skiing, especially downhill whenever possible.

Do you talk a lot of talk about the West Link in your spare time?

Not so much, but if I get the opportunity I take the chance to talk about the advantages of traveling by public transport and the importance of having a well-developed and well-function public transport system.