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Young roadmen stories. Valdemaras Mušinskas, AB “Panevėžio keliai” projects manager

There are less competitors on the difficult road

In 2010 at VGTU I graduated as construction engineer bachelor (road and railway engineering), in next two years finished my master degree studies. I wouldn’t say railway design was my dream. Well, during my childhood I used to travel by train with my grandparents a lot. My father’s house was near railway; I was playing nearby. Maybe my subconscious wish to stay near the rails came true? (smiling).

Remembering studies at the university – I was expecting more quality from my studies. Especially in the third year, when I had to more serious practical things. We were joking with study friends that we can find more information on YouTube site than in university. But still I got something very valuable there. I memorized words of the teacher “in your profession and in your life you have to choose most difficult road. Do you know why? Because if this road is really difficult there will be no competitors!” These words came true in my life. There’s always need for the railway men, if there’s a need – it means there’s a demand (smiling).

During my studies I got employed in UAB “Kelprojektas”. In 2015 started working in AB “Panevėžio keliai”. We do not have wide scope of railway design works yet, but they are quite complex – we have to reconstruct a lot of engineering networks. Our biggest customer is VĮ “Klaipėdos valstybinio jūrų uosto direkcija” (Public Company Klaipėda’s State Sea Port Direction”). At present there are not many of us, specialists – we have only one projects manager, one engineer and two technicians. I have to manage most of design and project management works. This is quite a challenge; I haven’t found any experienced specialists to help me when I came here. It is responsibility not only for my, but also for subcontractors’ work, negotiation on prices – quite a lot of things to ransack one’s brain. I like the process of creation the most. Customer presents its vision; we offer possible solutions taking into consideration all requirements. Communication, management skills are very important in this job. This is related with the work quality.

There are not so many railway designers in Lithuania working with Building Information Modelling (BIM) system, but a lot of companies in competition. It’s a pity we are not in the first of the best three railway design companies. We are in the “development” stage, but I believe soon we will be “grown up”. On the other hand, our customers are always happy. We do not conflict or obstinate – we negotiate and consult. Frequently there are complicated situations with other construction participants, for example experts or contractors, but we always try to find most suitable decision for all. Any way there’s no point of conflicts – you can agree with a wise ones and trick the fools…

There are a few specialists in the company. As we joke – a small bunch of hard working railway men. I wish there were more of us. We would need a competent and experienced partial project manager,  couple of independent design engineers and of course technicians. I think by myself how it would be great to design some of “Rail Baltica” section and participate in construction process or implement some of the serious (e.g. Radviliškis”) railway station reconstruction project. I wish to my team desire for improvement, innovative decisions and wider scope projects.

Newspaper “Road people”, Nr. 32