Giovanny Alvarado is a Project Manager and Design Director at AECOM with over 20 years of local and international experience. Roads & Infrastructure caught up with him to discuss his career’s journey to date and where he sees the industry heading.
Q: How long have you/your company been an AfPA member and why did you decide to become one?
I have been an AECOM employee for nearly ten years and believe we have been a corporate member of AfPA long before that. AfPA’s long history as a key industry body and our shared goals of sustainability, safety and delivery of benefits to communities make our ongoing membership an easy decision.
Q: How did you start your career in the road construction industry?
I started my career in the road construction industry in Colombia. Road infrastructure there is presented with significant technical challenges related to a combination of rugged terrain, complex geology, earthquakes, and heavy rain. Working in such a complex setting under pressure and other significant constraints became an ideal training ground for me as a young civil engineering graduate.
Q: What is your current role and what does it involve?
I lead the AECOM Arcadis JV (AAJV) design team that successfully tendered and is currently delivering detail design services for the Sydney Gateway project. We are responsible for all civil design works including road design, pavements, traffic engineering, earthworks and retaining walls, ground improvement and geotechnical design, drainage and flooding, lighting and electrical, intelligent transport systems and rail utilities. The delivery of this project is in a full 3D digital environment and embedded metadata for asset management purposes. As Design Project Manager I lead a team of 120 professionals with a focus on technical quality and innovation, effective design integration, and constructability. I drive collaboration across all stakeholders, timely preparation of design deliverables within budget, while ensuring appropriate levels of resourcing and availability of specialist skills throughout project delivery.
Q: What is the best thing about your current role?
Leading a large team of highly talented professionals where I have the opportunity to positively influence their career development. I am also privileged to be leading the delivery of innovative technical solutions which will deliver a positive impact on the broader community. I enjoy the intensity of major project delivery and the critical role we play in achieving successful outcomes.
Q: What is your biggest achievement in the industry?
The development of design teams that have delivered iconic infrastructure and will continue to deliver the next generation of major road infrastructure in Australia. I am proud of my technical background and believe technical excellence is at the core of industry development. I believe this is a principle that I have embedded into our team culture.
Q: What is a recent change you have seen in the industry and how are you/the company prepared for that?
The adoption of sustainability into procurement, design and construction. AECOM has been championing the implementation of sustainable technologies through an extensive collaboration with TfNSW, suppliers and contractors. An example is the Easing Sydney’s Congestion Program, where the warm mix asphalt and the use of recycled crushed glass are now default technologies used for all projects.
Q: What do you think is most interesting about the road construction industry?
Its legacy on communities by creating permanent connections and facilitating social, technological, and economic development. The road construction industry is key to an integrated transportation network and a key contributor to economic growth and progress in our society.
Q: How has being a member of AfPA benefitted you in the industry?
Being a member of AfPA has provided our organisation with the required visibility and connections within the flexible pavement industry to facilitate the implementation of innovative pavement technologies. Our staff also benefit directly by attending the forums and other events where these technologies are discussed.
Q: What are your goals for the future?
Australia continues to have a significant need for major road infrastructure across major cities and regional areas. My goals for the future are the ongoing development of our delivery team and the development and implementation of innovation in our industry. I enjoy the work I do and the collective achievements of our team and hope we can continue our contribution into the future.