Australia’s first tunnel training centre inaugurated22 December 2020
Australia’s first tunnel training centre has been set up in Melbourne to enable trainees to work on the Victorian government's planned rail projects.
Partly modelled on the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy established for London’s Crossrail, the Victorian Tunnelling Centre (VTC) will offer specialist training in the construction and operation of a variety of tunnels including rail, road and utilities. Trainees will be able to study for certificate and diploma qualifications plus safety-based training for working underground. It is expected that around 5,000 trainees per year will be instructed in underground construction (including TBM operation) and maintenance; the centre will also cater for other sectors, such as emergency services.
Located at The Holmesglen Institute’s Drummond Street campus in Chadstone, a Melbourne suburb, the new facility includes replica mined and TBM tunnels; two multi-purpose engineering workrooms and other training facilities including tunnel, shaft and sprayed concrete simulators, as well as augmented- and virtual-reality experiences. A cutterhead, refuge chamber and four-motion bridge and gantry crane also form part of the facility.
The VTC was built as part of the Metro Tunnel project’s contract with Cross Yarra Partnership (CYP). Construction of the centre was jointly funded by the Metro Tunnel Project, North East Link Project and West Gate Tunnel Project.