Hallandsas Halfway Breakthrough – press release
The 10.6m diameter Herrenknecht TBM, Asa, has broken through on the north side of Sweden’s 8.7km long Hallandsas Tunnel thus completing the first of two planned tunnel tubes for the double-track railway.
“This is a great day for everyone working on the project and a major step towards eliminating the greatest bottleneck on the West Coast Line,” says Per Rydberg, project manager at the Swedish Transport Administration.
Since being taken into operation in autumn 2005, the tunnel-boring machine Asa has drilled through very varied geology consisting of gneiss, amphibolites and diabase. To be able to get through the Molleback zone in with its high content of water and cracks, a 130m stretch was frozen. The tunnel is lined with concrete segments that form a waterproof tunnel.
The West Coast Line currently consists of 85 percent double track. The sharp curves on the single track over the Hallandsas ridge constitute the line’s greatest remaining bottleneck. When the double track through Hallandsas is completed, a doubling of rail freight tonnage will be possible, and the number of trains can be increased from the current number of four to 24 per hour. The first trains are expected to pass through Hallandsåsen in 2015.
“We have a well-functioning method and have gained valuable experience that we bring with us for continued drilling,” says Anders Rehnström, project director for the Skanska-Vinci JV currently constructing the tunnel.
Photos, film clips and text material available at www.sapp.se/genombrott
Read more about the Hallandsås project at: www.trafikverket.se/hallandsas
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