The Local Team
Most of the enabling works and construction work will be carried out by the locals, coordinated by the in country staff of B2P. We are looking forward to joining them for the 2 week installation of the main structure and sharing our knowledge and skills with them. We are also looking forward to learning from them.
L-R: Marc // Tammy // Jo // Musa // Pedro //Vlad // Michal //Marlene // Nicola // Giovanni
Musa Chunge – Project Lead
Musa grew up in Kenya and studied civil/structural engineering at the University of Waterloo in Canada. He spent a year of research at the Cambridge Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction, funded by the Gates Cambridge Trust. He started his professional career with Laing O’Rourke and now lives in London where he has been working for COWI for almost 2 years.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to support the locals. This project is effectively by them and for them, and we are there to support and empower them, not to ‘save’ them.”
Marc Gonthier – Construction Lead
Marc is a very experienced project manager having worked on a variety big structures across the globe. Marc has been based in Togo with Freyssinet, and will be taking on the role of the construction lead on the Kucyaruseke build.
“I have worked many times in Africa and I am fond of this continent. I am totally ready to go into another and new country for me – I have never been to Rwanda – to help the people using our knowledge”
Pedro Lozano – Safety Lead
Pedro is a director of quality, health, safety and environment from Freyssinet’s Spanish operations. He has been with the organisation over 11 years. Pedro will be the safety lead for the build and his experience will be an asset to the project.
“To be part of this project means to have the most enriching experience that I can ever have (more personally than professionally), where I can develop my motivation for helping and meeting people, exchanging information and knowledge from another countries, working in a multicultural international team, which is always very rewarding too.”
Vlad Opanasiuk – Logistics Lead
Vlad was born in Ukraine and moved to the UK at the age of 16, he joined COWI in 2015 as an Assistant Engineer in their London office.
“Kucyaruseke Bridge project is a chance to deliver a piece of infrastucture where it is truly required with and immediate positive impact. To me this is pure expression of engineering values and I am commited to apply my best abilities to contribute to this project and the lives of people crossing Akanyaru River”
Tammy Richards – Communications Lead
Tammy was born in Zimbabwe and moved to the UK in 1998. She is the office manger for COWI’s London office.
“Having spent most of my life in the city of London where everything is easily accessible, it is easy to take for granted the technology and infrastructure that is around us and it would be amazing to be able to go and help those who are not as fortunate.”
Marlene is a Commercial Repairs site engineer based in France and joined Freyssinet in 2010 as an apprentice. She has a passion for the outdoors and loves camping and wildlife.
“I’m happy to be part of the Kucyaruseke project and be useful to others. I see this project as an opportunity to remember and highlight the importance of bridges for a community, while their omnipresence at home makes us lose track of their fair value.”
Born in Italy, Giovanni has worked as a Civil Engineer for 15 years, he has been with COWI (formerly Flint and Neill) since moving to London in 2007. He has worked on the detailed design of a range of bridges ranging from long-span structures to small pedestrian bridges.
“I cherish the opportunity to be part of the Bridges to Prosperity experience, which will allow me to directly see the benefit of the bridge to the people who need it most”
Michal is a structural engineer in Freyssinet based in France. He joined Freyssinet in 2013 as a junior bridge bearings designer and has spent time in Singapore and South Africa with the company as well. A significant part of his work is dedicated to cable supported structures, such as large-span cable roofs of stadia, suspended or cable-stayed bridges, and he hopes to use this knowledge on the future Kucyaruseke Footbridge.
He has a passion for DIY and woodworking, and ran his own company in Poland and France working on apartment conversions, renovations, furniture design and manufacturing.
“My numerous off-the-beaten-track trips made me aware of our duty to share our wealth and knowledge with those in need. This motivated me to join Bridges to Prosperity and contribute to deliver a safe and durable crossing for the local community.”
Joanna (Jo) Bonnett
Currently a senior leader in the UK business, Jo joined Flint and Neill, now COWI, back in 2001. Jo has worked on a number of unusual pedestrian and highway bridges, including the ‘Bridge of Aspiration’ in Covent Garden, London. More recently, she has been working on strategically important existing bridges, looking to solve problems that have developed while minimising impact on the travelling public.
“I hope to gather experience that I can share both with my daughters and also in my role as a STEM ambassador. The B2P projects are inspirational and I believe my first hand account would be powerful in enthusing others. I hope to open my eyes further to the challenges of development and the contribution that engineers can make to improve people’s lives in a very tangible way”
Nicola is a bridge site manager with Freyssinet in Hong Kong. He joined Freyssinet 4 years ago to work on the first section of a bridge connecting Hong Kong to Zhuai and to Macao. Before that he had worked in different countries including South Africa, Venezuela and Italy, on mainly bridge erection.
“I love spending time on site dealing with different people. I am very happy to be part of the team for the Kucyaruseke project. I am not looking for any reward from this project except knowing that what we will be doing really improves the lives of other people. And I am sure a bridge always does.”