New News information at Tunnels & Tunnelling International New and updated information from News listed on www.tunnelsonline.info http://www.www.tunnelsonline.info/ en-us http://www.www.tunnelsonline.info/ New News information at Tunnels & Tunnelling International http://www.tunnelsonline.info/content/images/logo_big.gif EPBM chosen for Chalco Valley project http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/epbm-chosen-for-chalco-valley-project-4322486 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/epbm-chosen-for-chalco-valley-project-4322486 <p>The 7.9km, 5m diameter tunnel will run parallel to the General Canal, from the Parada del Toro pumping station to the La Caldera pumping station. The project, which will use an EPB machine for the excavation, includes fabrication and installation of the pre-cast concrete segmental lining, installation of the finish lining and covering, and construction of four 12m diameter drop shafts, with an average depth of 25m each.</p><p>The works will be executed over three years and are an integral part of Conagua's long-term plans to help reduce the risk of seasonal flooding within the Chalco Valley.</p><p>Empresas ICA secured the USD 860,000 contract from the national water commission, Conagua, to construct the General Canal Tunnel in the Chalco Valley, Mexico.<br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:21:36 GMT Fourteen rescued after 131 hours underground http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/fourteen-rescued-after-131-hours-underground-4322609 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/fourteen-rescued-after-131-hours-underground-4322609 <p>One person remains missing and the rescue operation continues.</p><p>People cheered and applauded in laughters and tears as the 14th trapped worker was brought out of the tunnel at 2:58am on Sunday.</p><p>Ambulances waiting at the entrance to the tunnel immediately took the survivors to the People's Hospital in Funing County, where the tunnel is located.</p><p>&quot;They look OK, but need a thorough examination. Plus we believe they will need psychological counselling later. We have made plans to help them recover,&quot; said Xu Heping, the deputy chief of the provincial health department.</p><p>The about 20 meters of the 13.5km tunnel collapsed at around 4pm Monday 14 July. More than 400 rescuers worked to free the trapped men.</p><p>At 7:20 p.m. on Tuesday (15 July 2014), rescuers managed to drill after more than 27 hours of rescue work and sent food, water and flashlights to the workers inside, while they tried to remove the obstructions. The trapped workers helped to fix the broken electric wires on Wednesday (16 July 2014) and the power supply to the trapped area resumed.</p><p>However, in the following days, the rescue operation suffered a major setback as the drilling machine broke down, said Wang Jingjiang, deputy general manager of the railway company that runs the tunnel.</p><p>Using smaller rigs avoided tough obstructions, but slowed progress. A small tunnel was finally opened up on early Sunday morning, said Wang.</p><p>Investigation into the cause the accident is underway. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:17:13 GMT French firm wins contract to design Jeddah Metro http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/french-firm-wins-contract-to-design-jeddah-metro-4322599 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/french-firm-wins-contract-to-design-jeddah-metro-4322599 <p>The agreement was signed on 17 July with the company Systra for a period of 20 months, according to local media reports. The company would look at all previous plans and come up with a new one, according to the reports.</p><p>Those present at the signing ceremony included Prince Mansour bin Miteb, minister of municipal and rural affairs, and member of the Jeddah transport higher committee, Jeddah Governor Prince Mishaal bin Majed and Makkah Governor Prince Mishaal bin Abdullah, president of the Jeddah transport higher committee.</p><p>After signing the contract, Prince Mishaal thanked King Abdullah and Crown Prince Salman for supporting the project and helping to improve the lives of citizens.</p><p>He urged the consultancy firm to make every effort to provide the best designs for the metro, to meet the aspirations of the country's leadership.</p><p>He also thanked Prince Mansour for his efforts in following up on this vital project and ensuring that other important projects in Makkah run according to plan.</p><p>Prince Mishaal said the project would be one of the most important in the country because it would improve public transport for the people and reduce congestion on the city's roads. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:14:46 GMT Tunnel highway project in quandary http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/tunnel-highway-project-in-quandary-4322590 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/tunnel-highway-project-in-quandary-4322590 <p>The instruction has come at a time when NPBCL has been facing criticism of being unable to collect resources for the project and show reliable sources for funding. Based on concession agreement clause, NPBCL had submitted financial closure to Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport (MoPIT) two months ago.</p><p>A technical committee under MoPIT has been going through the documents to ensure that the firm has resources required to undertake the project. MoPIT said that the developer planned to pool in resources through 20 per cent local funding and 80 per cent foreign investment. The 58km tunnel highway project is estimated to cost Rs 35 billion.</p><p>&quot;After going through the company's financial closure, the committee sought some clarifications regarding the funding flow last week,&quot; said Tulasi Prasad Sitaula, secretary at MoPIT, adding the NPBCL has been asked to come up with its explanations within two weeks.</p><p>MoPIT will make its decision after the committee completes its study. Sitaula said that if NPBCL fails to make the funding plans more transparent, they will have no other option but to terminate the contract.</p><p>As per the concession agreement reached between MoPIT and NPBCL in May last year, the government can scrap the permission issued to build the tunnel highway in case it is unsatisfied on any grounds after giving chance to the developer to provide clarification. MoPIT officials said that even as the project was so big, the NPBCL documents that were submitted two months ago show that it had managed to collect only around Rs 300 million.</p><p>The tunnel highway project, aimed at linking the capital with Hetauda within one hour drive, is the first of its kind being implemented after enactment of the BOOT Act eight years ago.</p><p>To build the tunnel highway, NPBCL is planning to sign loan agreement for NPR 28bn (USD 290M) with a Canadian infrastructure development company and also issue initial public offering (IPO) of NPR 5bn (USD 52M)</p><p>&quot;We've already signed a preliminary agreement with the Canadian party for loan and its representatives are arriving in a month for final agreement,&quot; informed Jayram Lamichhane, member of the NPBCL Board, adding they have also sought permission from the Ministry of Finance to issue IPO. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:12:07 GMT Underground passage considered for Kano to ease traffic congestion http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/underground-passage-considered-for-kano-to-ease-traffic-congestion-4322582 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/underground-passage-considered-for-kano-to-ease-traffic-congestion-4322582 <p>Many had yearned for over head bridges in strategic locations in Kano, the second largest city in Nigeria, as a way of easing the traffic trouble. The prayers seem to be answered as four flyovers are being constructed across the state metropolis.</p><p>The flyovers under construction will connect Radio Kano area to Ibrahim Taiwo Road, Murtala Mohammed Way to Triumph Newspapers and the popular Silver Jubilee (from Kofar Nassarawa to Audu Bako Secretariat). The three are being built by the Kano State government under Engineer Musa Kwankwaso administration. The fourth one is being built by the Federal Government at the Gyadi-Gyadi area of the state.</p><p>Yet the state government says before it rounds off on 29 May it will construct two more. These two will be an underground at Kofar Kabuga, a notorious heavy traffic area, and Gadon Kaya.</p><p>Both federal and Kano State governments are competing over the projects as observed by motorists. &quot;The rate at which the projects are going is encouraging,&quot; they say.</p><p>When completed, Kano, the centre of commerce in northern Nigeria, will enter the league of states with flyovers. This development is generating mixed reactions from commuters. While some commend the government, others, especially those in the political circles, are saying &quot;flyovers are no priority in the state&quot;. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:10:38 GMT Nanjing opens two lines http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/nanjing-opens-two-lines-4322574 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/nanjing-opens-two-lines-4322574 <p>Line 10 was built as a 15.9km Olympic Stadium - Yushanlu extension of Line 1's 5.7km Andemen - Olympic Stadium branch, which it has now absorbed.</p><p>Line 10 has one elevated and 13 underground stations, and an end to end journey time of around 40 minutes.</p><p>The 35.8 km Line S1 was originally planned as metro Line 6. It connects Nanjing South station with Lukou International Airport. A 50km second phase from the airport to the Gaochun district is scheduled to open in 2015. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:08:39 GMT Monas underground parking lot construction to begin next year http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/monas-underground-parking-lot-construction-to-begin-next-year-4322569 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/monas-underground-parking-lot-construction-to-begin-next-year-4322569 <p>Gamal Sinurat, Head of the Spatial Planning Agency, said on 9 July 2014 that the underground construction of Monas will begin next year. At this moment, the construction plan has entered the revising master plan design phase and detail engineering design (DED) phase.</p><p>&quot;Back then when the governor was still on duty, DED and master plan direction were revised by an appointed consultant,&quot; said Gamal. Moreover, he said that the revision can be finished in the next two to three months.</p><p>Gamal said that the construction of the Monas underground facility (parking lot) will be funded by the regional budget. However, he refused to provide detailed information. He also claimed that the construction will not disrupt Monas as it will be using advanced technology. When the construction is finished, the new underground facility will cover around 40 acres of Monas' ground, half of the total above-ground coverage. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 12:07:24 GMT Railway project gathers steam http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/railway-project-gathers-steam-4322545 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/railway-project-gathers-steam-4322545 <p>Some 100 per cent of the excavation works, 98 per cent of the structure of underground stations and 100% of a bridge that goes over the Al Khor highway have also been completed, a spokesman added.<br /> <br />Qatar's Minister of Transport Jassim Seif Ahmed al-Sulaiti was briefed on these and other aspects of the project during his recent visit to the work sites of the LRT project in Lusail.<br /> <br />The minister was accompanied by senior Qatar Rail officials, including managing director Abdulla Abdulaziz al-Subaie, CEO Saad al-Muhannadi and deputy CEO Hamad al-Bishri.<br /> <br />Al-Subaie briefed the minister on the progress of the project, explaining that the LRT project consists of four operating lines, 33km of network and 37 stations (including 10 underground).<br /> <br />The LRT will also be connected to the Doha Metro Red Line North via two main stations, Lusail Marina/The Pearl and Lusail's main station. The connectivity will facilitate easy transportation from and into Lusail City.<br /> <br />The LRT is one of the most important ventures benefiting real estate development projects in Lusail City and the project is progressing as scheduled.<br /> <br />&quot;At Qatar Rail, we consider that the LRT is pivotal for the transport infrastructure in the country and it reflects the promising vision of Qatar,&quot; said al-Subaie.</p><p>The Lusail LRT System will provide an efficient and comfortable commuting system for the inhabitants of Lusail City when the mixed community development is completed. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 11:55:51 GMT Makkah Metro deal expected in October http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/makkah-metro-deal-expected-in-october-4322532 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/makkah-metro-deal-expected-in-october-4322532 <p>Mayor Osama Al Bar said the project would be launched in mid-2015 and would be operated on a trial basis in 2017 before it is fully commissioned at in early-2020.</p><p>Last month Emir of Makkah, Prince Mishal Bin Abdullah, who is the chairman of the 'Authority for Development of Makkah and the Holy Sites', approved inviting bids for supplying locomotives and coaches from qualified international companies for the Makkah Metro.</p><p>Al Bar told the Saudi Arabic language daily Al Youm that a letter containing the terms and specifications of the project has been sent to the pre-qualified 10 consortia vying for the first phase of the project involving civil works.</p><p>&quot;We have asked them to submit their bids for this project. We intend to sign the contract with the winning bidders in early October,&quot; he said.</p><p>Al Bar said the project involves the construction of 88 train stations, including 22 underground depots, adding that six consortia have been pre-qualified to bid for the buses project, which is also part of the city's general transport scheme.</p><p>He said four rail lanes stretching around 182km would be constructed within the project to ensure coverage for the entire Western city of Makkah (also known as Mecca).</p><p>&quot;As for operation and maintenance, this project is now under way. We have already contracted with a consultancy firm to manage the metro project and another one for the design of bus lanes. Both of them are now working on their projects,&quot; he said.</p><p>The Saudi cabinet has approved the metro project, part of an ongoing transport modernisation scheme through the Kingdom, at a total cost of USD 16.5bn. <br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 11:49:35 GMT Preferred bidder for Northern Line extension named http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/preferred-bidder-for-northern-line-extension-named-4322528 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/preferred-bidder-for-northern-line-extension-named-4322528 <p>LU invited tenders from four bidders ( for the design and build contract, which involves the construction of some 3.3km of 5.2m i.d.<br />twin tunnel and two large-scale stations, one at Battersea and one at Nine-Elms.</p><p>Following the tender evaluation process, the two highest scoring bidders ­ Ferrovial/Laing O¹Rourke and Balfour Beatty/BAM ­ were invited to participate in the next phase of the procurement process.</p><p>Those to miss out inlcuded Bechtel/Strabag JV; and a Costain/Dragados/Sir Robert McAlpine JV.</p><p>A Transport for London spokesman said: ³Following negotiations with the two remaining bidders for the Northern Line Extension design and build contract, London Underground has selectedFerrovial Agroman Laing O¹Rourke Joint Ventureas the preferred bidder.</p><p>Contract award is planned for late August 2014.</p><p>The proposed start of construction for the Northern line extension is spring 2015.<br /></p> Mon, 21 Jul 2014 11:47:12 GMT