Her main goal is to increase the mobility, life quality and resilience of urban areas. Her passion for cities and their sustainable development has made her a globally recognized expert in her field. Now Antonia Cornaro, an urban planner by background, responsible for Business Development at Amberg Engineering, is being given a special honour: she will be holding a semester lecture on "Planning of Underground Space" at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich.

Antonia Cornaro is co-author of the award-winning book "Underground Spaces Unveiled: Planning and Creating the Cities of the Future" and co-chair of the ITA Comittee on Underground Space.

The lecture series focuses on the role of underground space in urban development from a historical, social, design, ecological, economic and sustainable perspective.

The underground space in cities holds an undiscovered or not optimally used potential that can, should and will contribute to the sustainable development of our cities. The planning of the urban underground requires multidisciplinary cooperation of professionals to create a new urban tissue among our cities. The need to plan the third dimension below the surface is crucial in making our cities future-proof, resilient, sustainable and liveable.

The course provides insights, case examples and concepts from early forms of underground use for living, conservation, storage and protection to modern times and the future of underground development.


The combined use of above-ground and underground spaces will be elementary for the urban development of the future.

Aimed at students interested in all aspects of the built environment, the course is offered in particular to students of the master program in Civil Engineering and REIS (Spatial Planning and Infrastructure Systems).

The students are taught an appreciation and knowledge of what lies beneath our feet and the complexities involved with planning of the underground space. The lecture provides concepts, methods and tools for understanding the role of the underground and which issues and challenges must be considered in its planning for an optimal future development.

The course preparation was supported by industry partners from the construction and tunnelling industry, such as STS (Swiss Tunnelling Society), Amberg Engineering, Marti, Swiss Infra, and CSD.


Find more information about the lectures here.

Co-sponsors for the preparation of the new lecture