Over four decades ago, Dr. Gerhard Sauer founded a tunnelling consultancy in Austria. Since then the company has grown into the leading specialist in tunnel engineering.

Dr. Gerhard Sauer

Dr. Sauer began researching the New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM) - also known as the Sequential Excavation Method (SEM) or Sprayed Concrete Lining (SCL) - alongside his colleagues and fellow NATM developers, Messrs Rabcewicz, Müller, and Pacher. The focus of his research was the application of NATM to multiple stacked tunnels in soft ground and urban situations.

After his education at the University of Graz, Gerhard Sauer worked as an Assistant and Lector at the University of Karlsruhe, alongside Prof. Mueller, the founder of the science 'rock mechanics' and was an early exponent of the New Austrian Tunnelling Method (NATM), which was developed in the 1950's and 1960's. He was involved in the first application of NATM in soft ground in an urban environment (Frankfurt, 1970) and played a major role in researching and further developing this construction method.

Dr. Gerhard Sauer

Dr. Gerhard Sauer

In 1979, he established the 'Büro Dr. Sauer' in Salzburg, and started to develop value engineering designs based on the high cost effectiveness of NATM compared to conventional construction methods.  In 1984, after several productive years in Austria, Germany and other European countries he expanded operations by opening new offices in Washington, DC and London. The team in Washington was one of the first Austrian consultancies to design NATM tunnels in the United States. The London office was formed just as NATM was starting to make its way into the United Kingdom's expanding tunnelling market. 

As the firm has grown, so have the services it offers. Today the company offers the full range of design and construction services for tunnels, shafts and caverns, and Cut & Cover structures with experience across a vast range of highway and railway tunnels, underground stations and sewer, water and utility tunnels around the globe.

The Dr. Sauer & Partners partnership was formed in 2011 and has become renowned as a worldwide leader in tunnel engineering having successfully completed more than 250 tunnelling projects around the world. Today, all the partners remain actively involved in the business, and all have been so for more than two decades. 

Partners L-R Juergen Laubbichler, Christian Karner, Thomas Schwind, Gerald Skalla, Gerhard Sauer