Hallandsås clears final hurdle

25 March 2003

The environmental and construction committee of the municipality of Båstad in southern Sweden has given the go-ahead for the continued construction of two tunnels through the Hallandsås ridge.

Christer Möller, project manager for the Swedish National Rail Authority, said that work should proceed by the beginning of September 2003.

The future of the project rested on this final green light, even though many believed it was simply a formality.

The Environmental Court in Växkö, had already cleared plans to continue the 18km-long twin tube rail tunnel, provided that the contractor (Skanska/Vinci JV) used a TBM (Herrenknecht) instead of drill and blast. The municipality of Båstad waited for this decision before making its own.

Tunnelling was originally suspended in 1997 when the grout used polluted the water table and affected the project's miners.

For details of the planned TBM construction, see T&TI March 2003, p7.