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Government starts search for Metro Tunnel TBMs

Government starts search for Metro Tunnel TBMs

The Victorian Government has officially started searching for the supplier that will build the four tunnel boring machines (TBMs) to construct the Metro Tunnel.

The TBMs needed for the AU$11 billion project – Victoria’s biggest ever infrastructure project – will be more than 100 m long, weigh up to 1,000 t and be custom-built to suit Melbourne’s unique ground conditions.

“We’re building a world-class, turn-up and go train system for Victoria and will use the world’s best to get the job done,” said Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.

“These giant custom-made TBMs will work day and night beneath the ground, building the Metro Tunnel to run more trains, more often, across Melbourne.”

It will take up to 18 months to build the machines before they’re tested and shipped in segments to Melbourne, after which they will be delivered to sites at Arden and Domain, where they will be lowered into the ground and reassembled on-site by local workers.

As they bore up to 40 m below the surface of the city, the machines will install concrete linings to support the excavated tunnel.

Each TBM will feature offices, kitchens and toilets, and be operated around the clock by a crew of around 15 people.

In July, Mr Andrews named Cross Yara Partnership (CYP) – a JV comprising Lendlease EngineeringJohn HollandBouygues Construction and Capella Capital – as the winner of the project’s most significant contract.

CYP will be responsible for building and fitting out the 9 km Metro Tunnel, as well as the construction of five new underground stations.

It is expected that the TBMs will be in the ground, operating 24/7 in 2019.

For more information visit the Metro Tunnel website.

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