Our plan to complete the outstanding works and bring Elizabeth line into passenger service continues to make good progress with the fit-out of the central section routeway now complete.
Following the completion of Crossrail’s tunnelling phase in May 2015 a network of new 21km twin-bore rail tunnels to carry trains eastbound and westbound was established and forms the central section routeway. The next phase of the project required Crossrail to convert the new rail tunnels into a fully functioning railway and connect with national rail lines to the east and west of London.
The routeway includes the key systems that interact with the train and support Elizabeth line services, this includes track, mechanical, electrical and traction power infrastructure along with the shafts and portals, Old Oak Common depot and Plumstead sidings.
FITTING OUT THE ROUTEWAY
The central section routeway features multiple different types of key systems within the entire tunnelled section of the Elizabeth line route.
Routeway Project Manager Camilla Burrow explains how the Elizabeth line’s routeway was constructed.
THE ROUTEWAY IN NUMBERS
Approximately 64km of the new, permanent track has been installed between Westbourne Park through to Plumstead and Pudding Mill Lane.
- 13,500 m3 of concrete – enough to fill several Olympic sized swimming pools – was poured as part of the track installation.
- Around 250,000 holes were drilled during routeway fit-out for electrical, mechanical and safety infrastructure.
- Approximately 45km of firemain and 42km of evacuation walkway installed in the routeway.
- Over 1,500km of cable installed to supply power to 4,500 tunnel luminaries and 66 ventilation fans in the central section routeway.
- Four critical radio systems installed using 146km of ‘leaky feeder’ radiating cable.
TESTING AND COMMISSIONING THE ROUTEWAY
The central section routeway is currently being used for Dynamic Testing to identify and fix any software bugs in the signalling and train systems.
Crossrail expects to transition into intensive operational testing of the central section, known as Trial Running, in autumn 2020. This will see multiple trains operating in the tunnels to simulate the Elizabeth line timetable.