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Maria Håkansson

Maria Håkansson has worked with traffic planning and traffic engineering for nine years. She was recruited to ÅF in 2011 to head the new Traffic Analysis section in Stockholm. Since then, the section has grown rapidly, working on more and larger projects, and expanding into two new specialist areas: geographic IT and landscape architecture.

What type of projects do you work on?

“Right now the projects we are working on include an expansion of the Stockholm underground network to Nacka and managing the traffic in the Slussen area while construction work takes place. Within landscape architecture, we are working with various aesthetic design programmes and feasibility studies, as well as with construction documentation for projects that include the new port access road in Norra Djurgårdsstaden. We also help clients to specify requirements and procure geographic IT support for their operations. Most of our clients are county councils, government departments and municipalities.”

What motivates you in your work?

”I’m passionate about building and developing our group. Seeing people develop, take on new challenges and grow in their professional roles is the best thing about my job. I also have a keen interest in infrastructure planning. I get a kick out of the feeling that I’m doing something good for my fellow citizens.”

Why did you choose ÅF?

“I saw the opportunity to create something from the ground up. There’s a fantastic pioneering spirit at ÅF, not least in infrastructure planning where we have worked our way onto some of the industry’s largest projects. A major factor behind our success in recent years is that we dare to think outside the box. We aren’t satisfied with doing things as they have always been done. We want to do that little bit extra and deliver the best possible results.”

How do you succeed in doing that?

“Not least by drawing on ÅF’s vast pool of technical expertise. Whatever technical challenge a client is facing, I know that I can always promise them I have a colleague somewhere who can sort it out.”

What do you think makes a good consultant?

“You have to be able to understand your client and the project in all its many aspects – the big picture, if you like. It’s also important to have the kind of positive energy that helps your co-workers to develop. Good consultants create new projects, and in doing so generate work for both themselves and others. That’s why good team players often enjoy successful careers with us.”

What do you like doing when you’re not working?

“I love travelling. I’ve recently returned from an exciting trip to the Balkans. My colleagues and I usually take pictures of infrastructure and traffic in the places we visit and then show them at meetings. They’re a good source of inspiration.”