Rebuilt TBMs launch on Brisbane traffic tunnel Aug 2012
Peter Kenyon, TunnelTalk
- The first of two refurbished Herrenknecht TBMs launch this month in Brisbane to drive the twin 4.6km traffic tunnels for Transcity. The Aus$1.5 billion (US$ 1.57 billion) Legacy Way project is to be delivered by the Transcity consortium comprising Ghella of Italy, BMD Constructions of Australia and Acciona of Spain.
Legacy Way (Northern Link) alignment
- A second TBM, currently in assembly, is expected to launch in two months time. When complete the 12.4m diameter tunnels will join the Centenary Motorway around Brisbane with the inner city bypass.
- "Each of the TBMs has been recycled from parts of the CLEM7 TBMs, which resulted in significant savings to the project," a Transcity spokeswoman told TunnelTalk.
- The CLEM7 tunnels, opened to traffic in 2010, form a 6.8km link between Woolloongabba in the south, under the Brisbane River, to Bowen Hills in the north. "The TBMs from this project have been completely restored and modified to suit the construction conditions of Legacy Way," said the spokeswoman. "Manufacturing new TBMs abroad would have been a lengthy process, so recycling the CLEM7 TBMs has allowed tunnelling to start much sooner and represents a multi-million dollar saving for ratepayers."
- Launch from the western worksite at Toowong follows more than a year of preparatory works that have included construction of the launch pit, completion of the cut and cover sections at the western and eastern tunnel entrances, relocation of sewer and water mains and installation of the conveyor system.
TransApex tollway projects
- During tunnelling, the TBMs will travel through a range of underground geology, most predominantly Bunya Phyllite and Neranleigh Fernvale, which are common in Brisbane's western suburbs. The depth of Legacy Way varies along the alignment from 9m to 54m.
- The Transcity consortium was selected by Brisbane City Council in September 2010 to design, construct, operate and maintain the Legacy Way tunnel (formerly known as the Northern Link) for 10 years.
- Under the terms of the contract construction of the parallel tunnels, which will accommodate two lanes of traffic each, must be completed by February 2015. Tunnelling is expected to be completed in late 2013. Penalty clauses of Aus$250,000/day form part of the contract.
- Brisbane City Council said in a statement that the start of tunnelling marked more than 16 months of work on the project. "The council is one step closer to being able to provide a four minute trip between Toowong and Kelvin Grove."
- "The first TBM is expected to progress at a rate of 15-20m/day when it reaches peak operation, and at its shallowest will be 9m below ground. While tunnelling was expected to begin in early September, better than expected progress during commissioning of the first TBM meant tunnelling could begin in August."
- Legacy Way is Brisbane's third major road tunnel project, following the 6.8km Clem Jones (CLEM7) Tunnel and the recently-opened Airport Link. It forms the fourth part of an overall transport plan known as the TransApex ring road program.
Brisbane awards Northern Link highway - TunnelTalk, September 2010
Northern Link plan of attack - TunnelTalk, September 2010
Brisbane's Airport Link powering ahead - TunnelTalk, June 2010
Buried end for Airport Link TBMs - TunnelTalk, January 2011
Brisbane completes Airport Link excavation - TunnelTalk, July 2011
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