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The TBM, whose remaining parts

are being delivered and assembled in

the next few weeks are due to start

working in the summer.

The Shieldhall Tunnel is expected to

be completed by about the end of 2017.

Preliminary Works


Towards the end of 2015, geotechnical

specialist Bachy Soletanche completed

the mammoth task of installing the pro-

ject’s 675 piles in just three-and-a-half

months. The piles play a vital part in the preparation of

the ground for the next stage of the project: the start of

the tunnel drive.

The work carried out by Bachy Soletanche included

the construction of cased secant piles (CSP) for the first

shaft of the tunnel, the service chamber and tunnel

boring machine launch chamber.

There is also 400 m of continuous flight auger (CFA)

contiguous piled walls for the cut-and-cover section of

the tunnel. The reinforcement cages placed in the piles

each weighing approximately one tonne each, were

more than 15 m long and were filled with nine cubic

metres of concrete.

As well as being technically challenging, the work

had to be carried out within a residential area and in a

restricted workspace.

The two 25 m tall piling rigs – the 100 tonne CSP and

70 tonne CFA - two huge service crawler cranes and

concrete pumps had to work in an area equivalent to

the size of just three full sized football pitches.

Brian Walker, Costain Senior Project Manager for the

Shieldhall Tunnel, was impressed with the piling


“The location and size of our site is very

challenging but with some careful planning and

collaboration with Bachy Soletanche, a major

part of this development is now complete and,

very importantly, without any issues or incidents.

“It was great to see that final pile being

completed and now we are set to begin the next

part of the project, when we connect the 150 m

long tunnel boring machine and begin


Innovative Solutions

George Leslie has completed two schemes along the

route and introduced an innovative solution to minimise


(see full report - cwuk-4-5/basic/page26.php


The company used a combination of Kijlstra’s Vario and

panel system products. The Vario CSOs were delivered

as pre-assembled units measuring up to 5 m x 3 m and

comprising a base unit, four walls, a weir wall and rise



Bachy Soletanche

VINCI Construction Grands Projets

George Leslie




Kobelco Cranes

Groundforce Shorco heavy duty props used in

preparation trench works .

Contractors World International Vol 7 No 3


Contractors World International