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 Jakarta MRT underground construction work kicks off http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/jakarta-mrt-underground-construction-work-kicks-off-4215673 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/jakarta-mrt-underground-construction-work-kicks-off-4215673 <p>Excavation began at Hotel Indonesia Traffic Circle, where there will be an underground station. A guide wall is due to be completed within three months, which will allow a diaphragm wall to be built. The time-scale for the completion of this and subsequent station works is four years.<br /> <br />In May 2013, the city authorities announced the winners of the tenders for the three underground civil works packages. Sumitomo Mitsui Construction Company and PT Hutama Karya is undertaking the work at Hotel Indonesia Traffic Circle, whereas the other two packages are being carried out by a consortium of Shimizu, Obayashi, Wijaya Karya and Jaya Konstruksi.<br /> <br />Two of the three elevated civil works packages will be carried out by a Tokyu-WIKA consortium, with a consortium of Obayashi, Shimizu and Jaya Konstruksi responsible for the other.<br /> <br />Commercial operations on the 15.7km line are planned to start in early 2018.<br /> <br />An 8.1km northern extension is planned as the second phase.<br /> <br />President Director of MRT Jakarta Dono Boestami acknowledged the pivotal role of the mass transportation mode. He said that the MRT Jakarta project can be the pioneer of similar projects in other cities.</p><p>&quot;Domestic and international markets will believe that Indonesia is capable of running this type of project,&quot; he said.</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:32:52 GMT Rail package evokes 'tremendous' interest among international firms http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/rail-package-evokes-tremendous-interest-among-international-firms-4215672 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/rail-package-evokes-tremendous-interest-among-international-firms-4215672 <p>Separately, 47 local and international firms collected documents pertaining to the prequalification of bidders for the Railway Systems package.</p><p>Both sets of responses underscore the mammoth international interest from contractors and vendors eager for contracting opportunities linked to the implementation of the Sultanate's multi-billion rial railway project.</p><p>Construction majors from Turkey, China, Italy, France, Spain, and South Korea are among dozens of international companies that have signified interest in bidding for the key Civil Infrastructure and Railway Track Design &amp; Build Contracting Services Package (Main Contractor) of the Oman Rail project.</p><p>The list includes contracting giants, such as Ozkar of Turkey, STFA of Turkey, Hyundai Engineering &amp; Construction of South Korea, TOTO of Italy, Strabag of Austria, Hanjin Heavy Industries of South Korea, Saipem of Italy, J&amp;P of Channel Islands, China Railway, CCC, Astaldi of Italy, TAV Tepe Akfen, Samsung, Acciona of Spain, Tecnimont of Italy, Hochtief Construction, POSCO and Eiffage Rail.</p><p>Contracting interest from locally and regionally based firms has been equally robust. Potential contenders from the Sultanate include Galfar, Zubair Corporation, Hani Archirodon, Services &amp; Trade, Federici Stirling BATCO, Teejan, Carillion Alawi, Bahwan Contracting, Al Hassan Engineering, Towell Infrastructure, Drake &amp; Scull Oman, Gulf Petrochemical Services, Oman Brunei Investment, and Simplex Infrastructures.</p><p>Up for grabs is a mega contract for the implementation of a 171km segment extending from Sohar to Buraimi and representing Section 1 of the 2,244km national rail network. As part of its scope, the selected Main Contractor will undertake a detailed design based on the preliminary design submitted by Italferr, the Italian rail consultancy appointed as the Preliminary Design Consultant (PDC) for the national railway project.</p><p>Civil works constitute a key component of the design and build package. It covers all the required earthworks, track work, switches and crossings, construction of railway depots, freight and operational facilities, railway maintenance compounds, highways and access roads, drainage channels, railway embankments and sand mitigation zones.</p><p>Also as part of its remit, the design and build contractor will build all structures, including railway tunnels, under-bridges and over-bridges, camel bridges, culverts, and crossings for pipelines and utilities. Facilities for freight, loading and unloading, operations and maintenance buildings, are included as well.</p><p>A contract award for the main design and build package is slated during the fourth quarter of this year.</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:29:09 GMT Work on 'miracle' metro project kicks off http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/work-on-miracle-metro-project-kicks-off-4215668 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/work-on-miracle-metro-project-kicks-off-4215668 <p>A high-level committee has been set up to solve all problems facing the project's implementation, including traffic problems, he said. &quot;Of course, there will be traffic delays while implementing this huge project and I request people of Riyadh to bear with us. We'll do everything possible to facilitate traffic,&quot; he told reporters after launching the project.</p><p>Digging work started in five places on 3 April 2014, including for the metro station at King Khaled International Airport, Al-Olaya Station, its control center and railway maintenance station.</p><p>Al-Olaya Station, covering an area of 28,000sq.m, will have shopping centers, service facilities and car parking areas, an official said. It is designed to serve 400,000 passengers daily.</p><p>The airport station will be located at the fifth terminal, which is being constructed, the official said. There will be three stations linking the airport with King Abdullah Financial Center.</p><p>The control and operation center will be located near the maintenance station, west of Princess Nora University.</p><p>The Riyadh governor later chaired a meeting of experts to follow up implementation of the project and discussed matters related to design, traffic and coordination with various departments.</p><p>Arriyadh Development Authority (ADA) announced the winning bidders on 28 July 2013 for three design and build contracts worth about USD 22.5bn for the construction of a 177km, six-line automated metro network, having 87 stations, in the capital city. More than 73km of the metro would be underground.</p><p>The Fast consortium, which is led by Spanish construction group FCC, will build three lines totaling 73km in a deal worth USD 7.82bn. FCC's partners in Fast include Alstom; Samsung C&amp;T; Strukton, Netherlands; Freyssinet, Saudi Arabia; Typsa, Spain; and Setec, France. Alstom's share of the contract is worth around USD 1.6bn and includes a fleet of 69 metro trains, together with Communications Based Train Control (CBTC), Hesop energy recovery system, and its Appitrack tracklaying system.</p><p>The Arriyadh New Mobility Group (ANM) will construct the 40.7km Red Line from Madinah Road to Prince Saad bin Abdul Rahman Road in a contract worth USD 5.21bn. Ansaldo STS' share is worth USD 680M and covers automatic train control (ATC), CBTC and power supplies.</p><p>Finally, the Bechtel-led BACS consortium will build the 39km Blue Line from Olaya Street to Batha Street and Al-Hayer Road, and the 25km Green Line along King Abdullah Road. The contract has a total value of USD 9.45 bn.</p><p>According to FCC, the construction of the network will require 600,000t of steel, 4.3Mcu.m of concrete, and will employ more than 30,000 people.</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 10:27:20 GMT Pros and cons of Ashgabat metro project pondered http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/pros-and-cons-of-ashgabat-metro-project-pondered-4210353 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/pros-and-cons-of-ashgabat-metro-project-pondered-4210353 <p>On an inspection tour of construction sites in early-February, Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov invited the Ukrainian construction company Interbudmontazh to consider building a metro in Ashgabat, according to Turkmen TV.</p><p>&quot;The Ukrainians [Interbudmontazh] are building railway and highway bridges over the Amu Darya River in eastern Turkmenistan, and a drainage and cable tunnel in Ashgabat; they compete with Turkish and French companies for new contracts in Turkmenistan,&quot; Construction Ministry official Amanmurad Khajiyev told Central Asia Online, predicting that the Ukrainians &quot;would likely jump at the chance&quot; to bid for building the subway.</p><p>Gas-exporting Turkmenistan's ability to pay for massive projects makes it a desirable client for foreign contractors, Khajiyev said.</p><p>A mini-poll conducted by Central Asia Online among Ashgabat residents and specialists of various branches led to mixed answers about the feasibility of a subway.</p><p>Youth, encouraged by local media reports about the country's successes, embraced the idea.</p><p>Ashgabat's population growth and boundary expansion make a subway a must, Magtymguly Turkmen State University undergraduate Ailar Mammetgeldiyeva said.</p><p>&quot;The surface transport fleet is constantly growing... but a bus ride cross-town can still take an hour and a half,&quot; she said. &quot;Taking a metro would save time, I think.&quot;</p><p>But other Ashgabat residents were not enamoured of the plan.</p><p>Building a metro would be &quot;absurd&quot; and &quot;economically unjustified,&quot; Keshi (weather network) retiree Begench Tangrygulyyev said.</p><p>&quot;During the Soviet era... only cities with at least 1 million people had metros,&quot; he said. &quot;Ashgabat has a much smaller population [about 637,000 in 2009, according to international estimates], so it might find itself 'knee-deep in harm and only ankle-deep in good,' as our ancestors used to say.&quot;</p><p>Tangrygulyyev called for more investment in surface transport, including monorails.</p><p>Seismic concerns also make people wonder how feasible a metro would be. Khalykberdi Ezizov, a Construction Ministry specialist on construction of quake-proofed buildings, cited the deadly 1948 earthquake that flattened much of Ashgabat and warned against building a subway.</p><p>&quot;Ashgabat is in a seismically dangerous zone, where building structures over two or three storeys are risky, let alone an underground railway,&quot; he said; though he didn't rule out building a subway if the project fully met safety and seismic requirements.</p><p>&quot;Given the high level of ground water and the seismic risks [in Ashgabat], only companies with an impeccable reputation and extensive experience ... can be trusted with [such a project],&quot; Ezizov said, calling on the government to conduct a transparent and global bidding process. <br /></p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 10:56:47 GMT Dagachhu hydropower project to be running by mid-July http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/dagachhu-hydropower-project-to-be-running-by-mid-july-4210345 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/dagachhu-hydropower-project-to-be-running-by-mid-july-4210345 <p>This, project officials said, means the project would meet its rescheduled deadline of mid-July.</p><p>The construction of 35.5m high and 26.7m wide dam began in November 2010 after the river was diverted to the diversion tunnel. Project officials said about 54,185cu.m of concrete was used to construct the dam.</p><p>Project deputy chief executive officer Sonam Wangdi said the river was diverted into the dam on 31 March. He said the diversion of the river into the dam would facilitate plugging off of diversion tunnel and testing hydro-mechanical gates before monsoon rains. The gates, Sonam Wangdi said, were installed to divert water and flood passage.</p><p>He said the remaining civil works at the intake site was the final lining of the 7.78km headrace tunnel. &quot;We're in the process of placing up concretes and spraying concretes,&quot; he said. &quot;It'll be complete by June.&quot;</p><p>Meanwhile, project's chief executive officer Thinley Dorji said they also completed the construction of desilter, surge shaft, pressure shaft and underground powerhouse. &quot;About 95 per cent of the works on installation of electrical and mechanical equipment are also completed,&quot; he said.</p><p>The project was scheduled to be commissioned in May, but after a portion of the tunnel collapsed on 5 January, it was rescheduled. <br /></p> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 10:51:00 GMT American water authority wins USD 35M insurance judgement http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/american-water-authority-wins-usd-35m-insurance-judgement-040414-4209176 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/american-water-authority-wins-usd-35m-insurance-judgement-040414-4209176 <p>According to the Las Vegas Review Journal, authority board members were briefed on the USD 35M judgment on in mid-March. An arbitration panel handed down the award in January following more than two years of depositions, document exchanges and deliberations.</p><p>&quot;We've pretty much recouped our losses, so we're happy,&quot; said Marc Jensen, the authority's director of engineering.</p><p>Intake Number Three has been beset by delays and increased costs since construction began in 2009. In 2010, the team excavating the starter tunnel for the TBM hit a fault zone, causing water and debris to flood the work area. The area flooded twice more that year. The floods prompted the authority board to add USD 39.5M to the project's budget, the largest such change order in the agency's history.</p><p>The USD 35M the project's insurance carrier was ordered to pay is on top of USD 14.2M already paid out on the authority's claim. Jensen said that basically covers the cost of the 2011 change order, legal costs and interest payments the authority lost out on.<br /></p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 06:36:29 GMT Peru awards mega metro project http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/peru-awards-mega-metro-project-040414-4209170 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/peru-awards-mega-metro-project-040414-4209170 <p>An agency of the Peruvian Ministry of Transport, declared the technical proposal submitted by Consorcio Nuevo Metro de Lima to be a valid bid. The project is the largest in Peruvian transportation history and comprises 27km of underground metro for Line 2, which will link the Lima metropolitan area districts of Ate and El Callao, plus an 8km underground spur from Line 4 to the Jorge Chavez International Airport.</p><p>The winning consortium is headed by ACS Group subsidiaries Dragados and Iridium, and by FCC subsidiary Vialia, together with Italian companies Impregilo and Ansaldo. The latter will provide electromechanical equipment and rolling stock. Also participating is Peruvian company Cosapi. Metro de Madrid will act as advisor for the project. The Peruvian government will put some USD 3.8bn toward construction and maintenance of the project, with additional costs covered by the consortium.</p><p>Two other consortiums, including one formed by Brazilian construction firm Odebrecht and Peru's biggest builder Grana y Montero, failed to submit bids last week as expected, sparking concerns that the auction might be flawed. Proinversion said those groups pulled out after the government refused to raise the project's USD 6.62bn cost ceiling.</p><p>&quot;I assure you the process has been serious, objective and the result has been positive,&quot; Carlos Paredes, transportation minister said in a press conference after the announcement. Paredes said the subway, which will complement an existing system of buses and above-ground trains, is fundamental to improving the quality of life in the capital that is home to some 10 million people, or about a third of Peru's population.</p><p>35 new stations will also be constructed, seven mined and the remainder by cut and cover. According to preliminary designs, the tunnels will likely be designed as single bores with twin tracks. Excavation is anticipated to be completed in two stages, each requiring four EPBMs for a total of eight machines with a minimum TBM diameter of 9.2m.</p><p>The country needs to spend between USD 30bn and USD 88bn to close its infrastructure deficit, according to estimates by analysts and officials. Construction on the train line will start in May this year and is expected to be completed in five years.</p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 06:34:38 GMT Europe's longest tunnelled road to be built in Bulgaria http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/europes-longest-tunnelled-road-to-be-built-in-bulgaria-4209166 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/europes-longest-tunnelled-road-to-be-built-in-bulgaria-4209166 <p>The tunnels are required for environmental reasons and will be dug in at 30m underground.</p><p>The total length of the highway stretch will be 65km. The projected cost is BGN 1.7bn (USD 1.2bn).</p><p>&quot;This is the longest tunnel facility in Europe and the second longest in the world,&quot; said the Minister of Regional Development Desislava Terzieva at a press conference.</p><p>According to Terzieva the tenders for the construction will start by the middle of this year and will continue through 2014.<br /></p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 06:30:57 GMT Hyundai bags USD 91M hydropower contract http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/hyundai-bags-usd-91m-hydropower-contract-040414-4209160 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/hyundai-bags-usd-91m-hydropower-contract-040414-4209160 <p>The company said the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract reached with Rajamandala Electric Power is for building a 47MW facility near the city of Bandung, 150km southeast of Jakarta.<br /> <br />The new Rajamandala power plant aims to provide electricity to Jakarta and surrounding areas.<br /> <br />&quot;Hyundai Engineering will be in charge of all facets of the project that include a water tunnel and the setting up of power cables,&quot; the builder said in a press release issued in Seoul on 31 March. Work on the project is expected to be completed around March 2017.&quot;<br /> <br />Hyundai Engineering said that with the latest contract under its belt, more effort will be made to secure other building orders down the line.<br /> <br />Indonesia has said it wants to upgrade infrastructure around the capital city by 2030, which is fuelling demand for more power.</p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 06:30:48 GMT Jilin Province railway tunnel caves in http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/jilin-province-railway-tunnel-caves-in-040414-4209157 http://www.tunnelsonline.info/news/jilin-province-railway-tunnel-caves-in-040414-4209157 <p>The Jilin-Hunchun High-Speed Railway under construction is expected to be completed and begin regular operation this year. With a total investment of 41.6 billion yuan, the 359km-long railway will have nine stations and trains are designed for speed at 250km per hour. It runs from the city of Jilin in the province to Hunchun in the province's Yanbian autonomous county.<br /> <br />The collapsed tunnel, Xiaopanling No 1, is located in Yanbian.<br /> <br />Local government in Yanbian is mobilizing police, firefighters and medics to the site for rescue.<br /> <br />An emergency command center has been set up at the provincial government and provincial Party chief Wang Rulin has arrived at the center to coordinate the rescue operation. Deputy governor Gu Chunli is on the way to the scene of the incident.<br /> <br />The railway is a key project for the province during the Twelveth Five-Year Plan.<br /></p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 06:26:24 GMT