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Crossrail’s first tunnelling machine constructs its 1000th ring under Hyde Park

Crossrail’s first tunnelling machine constructs its 1000th ring under Hyde Park
  • Construction advances at Paddington, Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road stations

  • New Tottenham Court Road ticket hall box at Dean Street completed

  • Excavation starts for Bond Street western ticket hall at Davies Street

Crossrail’s first tunnel boring machine, Phyllis, has constructed her 1000th tunnel ring under Hyde Park.

It comes as the Crossrail project completes excavations for Tottenham Court Road’s western ticket hall at Dean Street, starts excavation for Bond Street station’s western ticket hall in Davies Street as well as continued progress at Paddington.

The first of eight Crossrail tunnelling machines, Phyllis, is currently tunnelling under Hyde Park after completing her 1000th tunnel ring and has now constructed 1800 metres of tunnel (over one mile) from Royal Oak via the Paddington station box.

Crossrail’s second tunnel boring machine, Ada, has travelled 800 metres and has entered the station box at Paddington after successfully passing under the national rail lines into Paddington station. A total of 12,000 concrete segments, manufactured at Old Oak Common, have now been used to construct the western tunnels between Royal Oak and Farringdon.

At Tottenham Court Road, the base concrete slab has been installed for Crossrail’s western ticket hall at Dean Street. The contractor – Bam, Ferrovial, Kier (BFK) - is now preparing the site to begin construction of the mined tunnels that will connect the ticket hall to the station platforms. The spray concrete lining tunnel works will begin in early 2013.

The new western ticket hall at Bond Street will be five storeys deep and is one of two new Crossrail ticket halls that will be constructed at Bond Street ahead of Crossrail services commencing in 2018.

More than 42,600 cubic metres of soil will be excavated to construct the new ticket hall, passages and platforms. The excavated material will be transported to a new RSPB nature reserve at Wallasea Island in Essex.

Excavations of two shafts for the eastern ticket hall at Hanover Square were completed last month and work will soon begin on the station platform tunnels.

Diaphragm walls are continuing to be installed in Eastbourne Terrace to construct the outline of the Paddington station box before excavations start next spring. The installation of these panels has been carefully sequenced to allow the tunnel boring machines to travel through.

Keith Sibley, Crossrail Area Director West said: “Crossrail continues to make good progress in central London. Our first tunnel boring machine, Phyllis, is currently under Hyde Park and will arrive at Bond Street in early 2013. Construction of the new stations at Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road and Paddington is advancing with the progress becoming increasingly visible. From 2018, 24 trains an hour will pass through these stations during peak hours bringing an extra 1.5 million people within 45 minutes of Paddington and the West End.”

Finally, excavations also have started at the Fisher Street shaft at Holborn after the completion of piling works. The shaft will eventually provide future maintenance access to the Crossrail tunnels.

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Notes to editor

A total of eight new Crossrail stations will be constructed – Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf and Custom House. Berkeley Homes has also agreed to build a station box at Woolwich.

Constain Skanska is undertaking the Paddington station main works. Joint venture contractor BFK is delivering the works at both Bond Street and Tottenham Court Road, and is constructing Crossrail’s western tunnels between Royal Oak and Farringdon.

About Crossrail

The total funding envelope available to deliver Crossrail is £14.8bn.

The Crossrail route will pass through 37 stations and run 118 km (73 miles) from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km (13 miles) tunnels to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

When Crossrail opens it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10%, supporting regeneration and cutting journey times across the city. Crossrail services are due to commence through central London in 2018.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London. Crossrail is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.