HS2’s Long Itchington Wood Tunnel site in Warwickshire has acquired the usage of a new conveyor which has began operating to remove over 750,000 tonnes of excavated materials. The wastage will be taken over the Grand Union Canal, where it will be reused in various locations along the route.
The new conveyor stands at 254 metres in length and was developed via HS2’s civils contractor for the Midlands, Balfour Beatty Vinci (BBV). It will move material currently being excavated from Long Itchington Wood Tunnel and a railway cutting in the same location. Under current expectations, this innovative new excavation shortcut will remove the equivalent of around 30,000 HGVs from local roads, reducing impacts on the local community and cutting carbon.
This conveyor has been designed to be dismantled and reconstructed where necessary, allowing mobility among its implementations. It is set to operate in its current site until early 2023, where it will then be transported for use at Water Orton as part of a 1,200m long conveyor which will remove hundreds more lorries from the roads every day.
Alan Payne, Senior Project Manager at HS2 Ltd said:
“We’re working closely with our supply chain to reduce carbon right across the project and find construction solutions to minimise disruption around our work sites. It’s initiatives like this that will help us achieve our ambitious target of being net zero carbon as a project from 2035, helping to put HS2 at the centre of Britain’s sustainable transport network.”
The Tunnels excavation will likely produce around 500,000 tonnes of mudstone and soil, to be processed at an on-site-slurry treatment plant. This will then be separated out, to then be transported by the conveyor for its use in building embankments along the HS2 route. The remaining 250,000 tonnes of materials will be sourced through excavations for a railway cutting, to also be transported via the conveyor.
Ed Morgan, Senior Plant and Equipment Manager for Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV) said:
“As we build Britain’s new railway, we have big ambitions to reduce the impact on local communities wherever possible and to reduce carbon across the project. Our new conveyor does both. We can now move material from our tunnel boring activity and reuse it at other locations along the route. This will reduce construction traffic and ultimately, help us to contribute to HS2’s carbon targets.
“We’ll continue to embrace innovation and adapt our construction methods to leave a lasting positive legacy on the areas we operate in.”
Throughout the HS2 project, they have made their environmental ambitions clear at the forefront of each stage of construction, attempting to integrate local nature and habitats where possible and cut usage of on road waste haulage via HGVS. The use of this innovative conveyor is one more step to the great decarbonisation ambitions within the rail sector and achieving net zero.
Want to know more about the opportunities to become a key supplier to the UK rail industry? Attend TransCityRail and access an exclusive marketplace of buyers from Network Rail, HS2, Train Operators, Major Contractors, and all other tiers of the supply chain. For more information and to secure your place click here.