Construction News

Fri May 27 2022

Related Information

HS2’s London TBMs arrive on site [–with video]

17 Dec 21 Tunnel boring machines are being prepared on site for Skanska Costain Strabag joint venture’s HS2 tunnels under London.

Bird's eye view of TBM component arriving on site
Bird's eye view of TBM component arriving on site

The first two earth pressure balance tunnel boring machines (TBMs) will set out in 2022 from SCS JV’s site in West Ruislip.

The 1,900 tonne machines were delivered by German manufacturer last month.

The two machines will be the first of six TBMs that will bore 13 miles of twin bored tunnels underneath London where HS2 services will run.

They will join eight other machines that will operate on phase one of the HS2 project between London and Birmingham, collectively digging 64 miles of tunnels.

HS2 client director Malcolm Codling said: “The HS2 team at West Ruislip have been preparing the site for over two years to ensure it is ready to launch the first two London TBMs in 2022. This will be an exciting step as we begin our four-year programme of tunnelling under London, showcasing the best of British engineering, and building Britain’s newest low carbon transport network.”

The two machines have been designed to bore predominantly through Lambeth group (a set of geological rock strata), chalk and London clay. They are automated to install 4,220 tunnel segment rings each, to create each five-mile tunnel.

James Richardson, managing director of Skanska Costain Strabag joint venture, added: ”Delivering these huge TBMs to West Ruislip was an enormous logistical challenge involving 260 deliveries, including 110 abnormal loads. Our team worked tirelessly to deliver these items efficiently, whilst minimising disruption to our neighbours. All eyes will be on West Ruislip in 2022 as we start to build the London tunnels, reaching depths of 30 metres below ground.”

Got a story? Email


Click here to view more construction news »