For decades, many ship pilots passing under the silhouette of the new Waterloo Bridge on the Thames would call it “the women’s bridge.” The original London bridge was demolished at the gates of World War II.
Legend had it that, in the absence of male labor, it was a large majority of women who were responsible for dismantling (and rebuilding) it. Unfortunately, the original construction company went bankrupt, and with it all records were lost. It was not until 2015 that the true history of the bridge was confirmed.
It took historian Christine Wall’s tireless work to bring irrefutable evidence of female participation in the infrastructure – photographs showing several female welders working on the bridge. It is believed that up to 65% of the workforce on the site were women.
Fortunately, this remarkable record has been beaten again years later, thousands of miles away and in an even more ambitious infrastructure. The endeavor is São Paulo’s Metro Line 6 - Orange, a spectacular project executed by ACCIONA, which, at 9.5 miles long, is the largest infrastructure under construction in Brazil.
Today, 70% of the workforce at its Segment Factory is female. These concrete segments support a structure that could well be nicknamed “the women’s tunnel.” They are the symbol of ACCIONA’s commitment to integrating women in the construction sector and generating a positive impact on the communities where we operate. Read on to learn about the details of this monumental work.