Latest Rail News

23.07.14

Crossrail completes tunnel segment production

Crossrail has cast the last of its 250,000 concrete segments, used to line the tunnels of Europe’s largest infrastructure project.

The final piece was manufactured at Crossrail’s specially built factory in Chatham, Kent, which has produced 110,000 tunnel segments to line the project’s 12km long eastern twin tunnels, from east London to Farringdon.

At its peak, Crossrail stated that the Chatham factory operated 24 hours a day, five days per week and on average manufactured 330 segments per day. Each segment weigh3.4 tonnes.

Seven segments and a key stone form a complete tunnel ring in the new Crossrail eastern tunnels, which are being built by joint venture Dragados Sisk. Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail chief executive, said: “Crossrail is Europe’s largest construction project with an immense supply chain spread across the country. The team at Chatham have done a superb job supplying our eastern tunnels with concrete segments.”

During production, the Chatham factory sustained 120 jobs for local people, including two apprentices. Maidstone-based Brett Concrete supplied 140,000 cubic metres of concrete for the segments and Medway Ports facilitated 260 river barge movements from Chatham to Limmo Peninsula, near Canning Town, where segments fed Crossrail’s 1,000 tonne tunnel boring machines.

Segments for the western tunnels from Royal Oak to Paddington were manufactured at a separate facility at Old Oak Common. And the segments for the Thames Tunnel between Plumstead and North Woolwich were manufactured in Ireland.

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