Naples 2019 was the last venue to host a World Tunnel Congress as a physical event. The next will be in Copenhagen in 2022. In between there has been a tough, barren interlude for tunnellers during which no physical WTC took place due to the pandemic. The event originally scheduled for Kuala Lumpur in 2020 was cancelled and held as an online event in September of that year. By all accounts, it was as successful as could be expected given the prevailing conditions.

WTC Copenhagen too has suffered setbacks arising from the pandemic. The first scheduled event was due in 2021 but was postponed to the following year. Then, further uncertainty saw the WTC organisers push back Copenhagen from April 2022 to September 2022. And that is where we are now.


So, as the virus finally appears to be becoming less virulent, we gradually emerge from a dark tunnel to a reshaped world. Wounded, perhaps wisened, but ready once again to see old colleagues and meet new ones at WTC Copenhagen (2-8 September 2022).

However, first thing is first. As of 1 February 2022 and as T&T went to press, there has been a reduction in Denmark’s Covid-19 restrictions. But the situation can change with little warning and different requirements for testing and self-isolation could apply, depending on whether you are vaccinated, previously infected or neither – and, on the country you are travelling from. The advice for travellers is therefore to check Denmark’s entry requirements and restrictions before travelling. Visit for the latest updates.


With that over, we can finally focus on the actual event. What will be in store for engineers and consultants who typically make up the majority of WTC attendees?

A major attraction will be the conference. Delegates will have the opportunity to learn of the latest research and advances in a multitude of varied tunnelling and underground construction technologies.

The overall theme for the conference will be ‘Underground Solutions for a World in Change’ with the following priority themes:

  • Climate resilience
  • Innovative solutions for a sustainable society
  • Subsurface planning, and
  • Sustainable underground structures.

As usual, conference technical topics will be diverse and include: conventional and mechanised tunnelling; immersed tunnels; shafts; BIM; geotechnical conditions; groundwater control…and much more.

With abstracts submitted, comments received and final papers peer-reviewed by the Scientific Committee, the conference once again looks set for an insightful and stimulating experience for those who attend. Delegates will be spoilt for choice and, as usual, the main problem will be making the difficult decision as to which of the paper presentations to attend.

Kicking-off the conference will be the opening ceremony which, if past WTCs are anything to go by, will be lively, entertaining, even dramatic. The host country’s organising committee always has a trick up its sleeve as far as this is concerned. Indeed, experience has shown that the opening ceremony is the best attended part of the event, when everyone can come together in the same space and enjoy a dazzling spectacle that is usually linked to the customs of the host country.

Also critical to the success of the conference will be the exhibition hall. Bristling with equipment manufacturers and suppliers, they will display their latest offerings. This collection of technology is not purely commercial but offers delegates the chance to catch up on the progress of technological developments in tunnelling and underground construction.


The conference venue will be Copenhagen’s cutting-edge and strikingly modern Bella Centre located 500m from the eponymous metro station. It can be reached directly from Copenhagen Airport by only one change of line. Alternatively, a taxi from the airport to the venue should cost around DKK350 (US$53).

For further details of WTC2022, including the full schedule of activities, visit