Mike Mouzourides is the Structural Engineer for GL events UK’s overlay delivery of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games. With years of experience in the field and an optimistic attitude, it’s clear that he’s a crucial part of this dynamic team.
Mike’s core responsibility is to manage structural issues pertaining to GL events UK’s projects. A chartered structural engineer by trade, his involvement extends to managing the building of stadia, permanent grandstands and large-scale temporary seating structures.
Mike comments: “My team tend to focus on anything relating to large scale spectator solutions – we’ve worked all over the world producing temporary stands. We’re often involved in providing temporary solutions for major sporting events all over the world such as the Olympic Games, the Commonwealth Games, the Open Championship and the Rugby World Cup – where we oversaw the biggest temporary stand ever built at Eden Park in New Zealand. We project manage every aspect of these jobs; starting with design, through to pricing and delivery on-site. At Birmingham 2022, I’m responsible for large lighting towers and complex groundworks, which are key parts of our delivery at Alexander Stadium.”
Having lived in Birmingham for many years, Mike reminisces on the work he’s done to date. “Having been a fairly slow starter at school, I returned to education to complete a degree in Civil Engineering and started out as a Consultant Structural Engineer, designing and building. I really enjoy being involved in the industry.” Mike continues by emphasising that you don’t necessarily need to be super intelligent to achieve your goals. “I believe everyone can achieve what they want in life. It’s about your commitment and dedication. There’s always a way if you work hard enough.”
In his current role, Mike discusses how it’s complexity that poses the biggest challenge. “At times, it can be difficult to achieve the desired vision of the client, down to a combination of factors that are often outside our control. For instance, contractors can create conditions on-site that differ to what we’d expected.” Other issues can surround ecology, as Mike continues, “When you first visit a site, there might be soil on the ground, but the next time you visit there might be flowers in bloom. Navigating ecological issues, whilst ensuring all outcomes are aligned with the client’s vision is one of the most challenging aspects of the job, but we always get there.”
”I believe everyone can achieve what they want in life. It’s about commitment and dedication. There’s always a way if you work hard enough.Mike MouzouridesStructural Engineer - GL events UK
Mike continues to discuss other obstacles. “Naturally, we’re dealing with large commodities and structures on this project. For instance the lighting towers are massive, at around fifty metres tall, seating structures on slopes and scaffolding in parks. Therefore, there’s quite a lot to figure out when the work is centred around understanding what the client wants. Part of the process is being given a brief by the client, The Organising Committee (OC) to then piece together. This involves the client discussions with their experts or the council to clarify our questions, while maintaining care with government money. The fact is, these aren’t sites owned by GL events UK or the OC so we have to seek permission in order to make certain decisions. It can be a lengthy process at times but we manage to all come together and make the right decisions. When we reach those decisions, the feeling of accomplishment among the team is unanimous.”
It is clear that the positives outweigh any challenges from Mike’s perspective. “There are a lot of interesting moving parts within this project, one of which is to deliver genuine legacy in the region. It’s also quite nostalgic for me to be working on sites that I’ve been involved in before. Twenty years ago, I installed the training facility at Alexander Stadium, so it’s ironic that I’m involved with it again to ready it for the Games. It’s a pleasure to know that this event is taking place in my hometown. Likewise, the event is huge for GL events UK, as it will be another flagship event to add to our impressive portfolio. Overall, the Commonwealth Games serves as a message to communities and businesses alike about unifying people through sport. This is a mantra we’re proud to be a part of here at GL events.”
As the Games draws nearer, the importance of delivering social value remains at the forefront of the team’s minds. There is a collective acknowledgement that the reach of this multi-nation event is huge and that the benefit to communities across the globe will last for years to come.