Following the success of the 1st PIARC International Conference on Tunnels held in Lyon, France, in October 2018, PIARC and the Spanish National Committee (ATC) will jointly organize the 2nd International Conference on Tunnels and the VIII National Symposium on Tunnels in October 2022 in Granada, Spain. This joint event will bring together the knowledge and exchange of international experiences of PIARC in this matter together with the traditional Spanish symposium organized by the ATC every four years. We hope to bring together nearly 1,000 road tunnel professionals from the world to generate a global discussion on the topic.
PIARC is an apolitical and non-profit association, one of whose main objectives is the transmission of knowledge and the exchange of experiences on roads. Its Work Programs are organized in four-year cycles marked by the World Road Congresses. The framework for the development of these objectives is the Technical Committees, being that of Road Tunnels, previously called Tunnel Operation, one of the most active. Since 1995 he has published 48 documents in addition to an online Manual and numerous articles in the Routes / Roads magazine. For this reason, in October 2018 the initiative was taken to organize an international Conference on Tunnels that was held in Lyon and which was a great success of participation. This has encouraged the convening of a 2nd Conference, this time in Spain, which will mean its consolidation.
Faced with the new challenges of climate change, a sustainable economy and within the framework of Covid 19, it makes sense to speak of resilient infrastructures, a concept also applicable to tunnels. In this way, tunnels must present high availability rates with an acceptable level of safety even under circumstances that involve significant alterations to normal operation, establishing measures to reduce impacts. This will also imply the redefinition of the design and management standards and integrate the concept of resilience into the life cycle.
On the other hand, the road transport sector is experiencing a technological revolution with the challenges of digital transformation. Phenomena such as the autonomous vehicle, shared vehicles, digital mobility platforms, electrification, and the new energies for propulsion of vehicles are realities on which we must already work due to their direct relationship in the way of management and operation of tunnels. The ITS systems and their continuous development also have a lot to say about all these issues. Other important issues are the management of large urban tunnels, as well as, in general, the ventilation and lighting of the tunnels and their constant progress.
The celebration of this 2nd international conference, coinciding with the VIII National Symposium of Tunnels of Spain, will allow to expose the state of the art of all these novel topics and be a forum for feedback and exchange of ideas that will allow to continue investigating modelling the tunnels facing the challenges that in a few years will be present and will be normal in our infrastructures.