A Galway woman, who has engineering in her blood, has helped shape New York’s skyline, having been responsible for the design and construction of many of that city’s iconic skyscrapers.
Áine Brazil, originally from Salthill, now living and working with a top company in New York, was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by NUI Galway at a conferring ceremony last month, being conferred with a Degree of Doctor of Engineering (honoris causa).
In a career of over 30 years with Thornton Tomasetti, the company which designed the Petronas Towers in Malaysia – the world’s tallest buildings – Áine has been responsible for the design and construction of high-rise buildings, air-rights projects with long-span transfer systems, and a mix of educational, institutional, healthcare and hospital projects.
Currently, Áine is working on the largest private development project in the United States, the Hudson Yards Project on the west side of Manhattan, as well as a number of hospital and lab buildings – one of which is the River Building Laboratory, located at the Rockefeller University campus.
“Every day there are new challenges and New York City is a wonderful environment for structural engineers to have an impact on the skyline,” said Áine, reflecting on her career so far.
“I have had the opportunity to participate in amazing projects – many high rise and complex projects, with talented design teams and wonderful clients. The challenges of construction in a tight urban environment keep every day interesting.”
Áine has received many awards from business and real estate organisations and held leadership roles in structural and resiliency code development in New York City. She was also the first president of the Structural Engineers Association of New York.
She obtained her Bachelor of Engineering from NUI Galway and a Masters degree in Structural Engineering from Imperial College in London, but a Doctorate wasn’t originally on the cards.
“My career path led me into the structural engineering design world where a combination of analytical ability, practical application, appreciation of the architectural design and understanding of the client’s need all came together and allowed me to contribute to major projects,” she said.
For more on Áine’s story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune
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