by Cyndee Miller
We’ve pretty much seen it all in 2020: accelerated transformations, momentous pivots and, well, spectacular flameouts. But even before COVID came along, plenty of project teams have stared down adversity and delivered. One prime example: the PMI Project of the Year winner.
The Trans Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline (TANAP) is on track to disrupt Europe’s natural gas sector. The US$6.5 billion pipeline stretches 1,835 kilometers (1,140 miles) across northern Turkey, traversing over mountains and under bodies of water, including 19 kilometers (12 miles) below the Dardanelles.
Led by TANAP Dogalgaz Iletim A.S., the pipeline is the longest stretch of the Southern Gas Corridor, a game-changing program of over 250 energy projects across seven countries that will transmit natural gas from the Caspian region to Europe for the first time.
A massive impact? Check. A massive investment? Check. But things didn’t go off without a hitch. As the team built out the pipeline, project leaders had to work around sensitive archeological sites—uncovering roughly 1,000 artifacts during the project. Whenever the team faced potential delays stemming from cultural or environmental concerns, work didn’t stop. Instead, the team leap-frogged down the line and returned to work on the previous site when conditions allowed. Project leaders also provided incentives for contractors to safely reach key milestones early.
Their efforts worked: The team closed the project on time and US$5 billion under budget “to the highest quantity and safety, social and environmental standards,” says Mustafa Ayan, former project CTO and now COO of TANAP Natural Gas Transmission Co., Ankara, Turkey.
And project leaders are also ensuring their lessons learned don’t just stay in their heads. Team members are pooling their experiential insights to create a book that will not only help TANAP sponsors and stakeholders, but will be shared with the industry.
TANAP was in good company for this year’s Project of the Year award. Consider the other two finalists:
- The Montréal Tower Revitalization Project: The iconic leaning structure sat empty for 30 years—until a five-year, US$113 million initiative transformed it into a thriving commercial space.
- Fort McMurray West 500 kV Transmission Project: The five-year, CA$1.57 billion effort marked Canada’s first PPP for a transmission line. The result? A more efficient grid and more affordable transmission.
Check out a recap of the three projects in the PM Network digital exclusive. And then dig into full case studies in the December issue of PM Network. If you can’t wait until then, grab some popcorn and head to the 2020 Project of the Year playlist on PMI’s YouTube channel.