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  From transit tunnels to highway tunnels to water and sewer tunnels, my career improves the quality of life for millions of people in major metropolitan centers.

Don Del Nero

Vice President, Tunneling & Trenchless Technology Practice Leader

Atlanta, Georgia

Don is our global practice lead for tunneling and trenchless technology, and minimizing the impact of construction on existing infrastructure and community residents is what he does best. His experience encompasses more than 50 major projects and 40 miles of installations, representing more than $1 billion in capital improvements. As global practice lead, Don’s primary focus is on the soft side of underground projects: contracts, dispute resolution, means and methods, and alternate project delivery.

Right now, Don is working on a mega-water project for the City of Atlanta that will facilitate a secure and fresh water supply for over 1.2 million people. It’s under immense schedule pressures, but recently Don had the opportunity to look down the starter tunnel of the project and reflect. The raw potential and natural beauty of the site helped Don remember how much he dearly loves bringing lifeline projects to completion that will enhance the quality of life for major population centers.

Passionate about furthering the understanding of how tunneling and trenchless technologies can and should be used, Don is an active member of the board of directors of the North American Society for Trenchless Technologies. He is also an instructor for the annual tunneling and microtunneling short courses presented at the University of Colorado.

New technologies, new tunnel boring machines, and new developments in underground projects are developed on a weekly basis. Don and his team seek out these developments and innovations to ensure that we and our clients are implementing the best underground technologies and methods.


Many owners go through a robust risk management process—but they’re missing the residual risks that they will still face in the construction phase. I’m speaking about residual risks at the Risk Management in Underground Construction conference on November 15, 2016 in Miami, Florida.

Join me as I help present NASTT’s Small Diameter Tunneling webinar on Tuesday, December 6, 2016 at 2:00 PM EST.

Join me at the 24th annual Microtunneling Short Course taking place February 7-9, 2017 at the University of Colorado in the Dal Ward Athletic Center, Boulder.

I contributed a chapter on means and methods in Trenchless Technology: Planning, Equipment, and Methods by Mohammad Najafi.

How much detail is too much? My paper “Means and Methods: In the Engineer’s Domain” and my article “In the engineer’s domain?” explore the ramifications of designers overprescribing the means and methods that contractors should use.

Constructor prequalification, when done right, is critical to ensuring successful projects. My article “Perils of Prequalification” outlines essential criteria that should be considered in a request for qualifications and highlights various scoring system options.

Consultants have a wealth of creativity, but sometimes engineers fail to mobilize that skillset. “Juicing the Orange: How to Turn Creativity into a Powerful Business Advantage” by Pat Fallon and Fred Senn is an excellent resource on utilizing creativity in the business world.

Looking for a roundtable on the industry? Trenchless Online featured insights from myself and six other panelists during their No-Dig Show in Denver, Colorado.

As the vice-chair for the 2017 No-Dig Show in Washington, DC, I’ll be supporting over 2,000 attendees, and we’re expecting as many as nine papers to be presented by Stantec staff.

I currently serve on the steering committee for the inaugural Risk Management for Underground Construction Conference. There, we’ll help guide attendees on how to negotiate the risks associated with underground construction.


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