Crossrail tunnelling nears completion

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Crossrail’s tunnel boring machine, Victoria, has broken into the eastern end of Liverpool Street station, marking completion of more than 40km of the total 42km of train tunnels under the project.

The current breakthrough is part of Crossrail’s longest tunnel drive, which is an 8.3km-long tunnel from Limmo Peninsula, near Canning Town, to Farringdon.

Victoria, named after the Queen that oversaw the birth of Britain’s railways, has joined its sister machine TBM Elizabeth, where they will both work on the remaining 2km-long tunnel to Farringdon.

The completion of this tunnel by the TBMs, which weigh 1,000 tonnes each, is due this spring and will link all Crossrail tunnels for the first time.

Tunnelling works under Crossrail project is expected to be completed later this year after Crossrail started building its first tunnel in May 2012.

Liverpool Street station is located below the existing Liverpool Street and Moorgate stations and Finsbury Circus.

It will serve the City of London and provide interchanges with London Underground’s Northern, Central, Metropolitan, Circle and Hammersmith & City Lines, connections to Stansted Airport and National Rail services at Liverpool Street and Moorgate stations.

pic 3Located on the Crossrail central line between the Liverpool Street and the Tottenham Court Room stations, Farringdon station will be a major interchange station connecting Thameslink, Crossrail and London Underground services.

The £14.8bn Crossrail project is expected to be completed in 2018, and the route scheduled to be fully operational in 2019.

Crossrail will boost the capital’s rail capacity by 10%, bringing an additional 1.5m people with 45 minutes commute of central London.

Liverpool Street is one of 10 new Crossrail stations being built in central and southeast London. The new station will be located between London Underground’s existing Liverpool Street and Moorgate stations, with connections to both.

Joint Venture Dragados Sisk is constructing the eastern tunnels between Pudding Mill Lane and Stepney Green, Limmo Peninsula and Farringdon, and Victoria Dock Portal and Limmo.

The station tunnels at Liverpool Street have been built by a joint venture comprising Balfour Beatty, BeMo Tunnelling, Morgan Sindall and Vinci Construction.


Meanwhile, Irish TV are broadcasting a special half-hour feature on the workers of the Crossrail this Wednesday.

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This week’s Out and About UK programme on Irish TV will focus on some of the Irish workers that are contributing to the Crossrail project.

Broadcast on Sky 191, Freesat 400 and online at, the special half hour programme will be aired on March 18 at 8:30pm.

The show will take an in-depth look at the highly anticipated project which will greatly increase access from in the south east of England.

“Decades ago the Irish were leaving their homeland in their droves in search of work in the UK and beyond, many of which took up employment building railways and canals. But for many years the constructive industry was booming in Ireland and emigration was at an all-time low,” said Irish TV’s London correspondent Ian McDonnell.

“However, it has been widely documented that many young Irish tradesmen and women and engineers have been forced to seek work in the UK in recent years and the Crossrail project is one such area where the Irish are well represented.

“We caught up with them in this special half hour documentary and hear why they make the move to London and how they have settled,” he added.

The programme will be repeated on Thursday, March 19 at 10.30pm and Sunday, March 22 at 11.30am.



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