Developer Argent Related has entered into a partnership with Haringey Council for the new £1bn Tottenham Hale development in London, UK.The project will provide nearly 800 homes around the Tottenham Hale transport hub, with access to the Victoria line, National Rail and future Crossrail 2 services.The development will include new shops, cafes and restaurants, community facilities and a health centre.It will also feature improved green spaces and better access to both the new Tottenham Hale transport interchange and the Lee Valley Regional Park.Robert Evans, Argent’s partner, said: "Argent Related is focused on opportunities, like Tottenham Hale, to work with committed local authority partners to transform urban areas and improve the lives of communities with the right housing and workspace provision, social and community facilities, public infrastructure and other investment."We are delighted with today's decision and look forward to moving forward quickly, into design and delivery."
Sacyr subsidiary SIS has secured a contract to build and manage the 186km Rome-Latina freeway in Italy.The contract, awarded by Autostrade del Lazio, has a concession period of 43 years. It includes the construction of 100km of freeway and 86km of secondary roads.Estimated to cost €2.8bn, the project represents the final part of Lazio Major Bypass, which includes the Sole, Cisterna-Valmontone, Rome-Latina and Orte-Civitavecchia freeways.It also involves the construction of 78 viaducts and overpasses with a total length of 23.7km, two tunnels, five cut-and-fill tunnels, 17 link roads and three central toll barriers.
A report released by Unesco supports plans for the conversion of the A303 at Stonehenge into a tunnel.In October 2015, the UK received representatives from the Unesco World Heritage Centre to investigate and advise on issues related to the proposed project.The report concluded that the proposed 2.9km dual carriageway tunnel will have a positive impact on the site, even though the organisation is cautious about the possible adverse effects on the historic landscape, including the position and design of tunnel entrances, embankments, entry and exit ramps and the construction work. However, it stated that those issues could be addressed with “good design and construction controls”.Several heritage groups have welcomed the report. Kate Mavor, chief executive of English Heritage, which looks after Stonehenge said: “Provided that it is designed and built in the right way, a tunnel would reunite the wider landscape around the ancient stones, helping people to better understand and enjoy them." Part of the government’s £15bn five-year Road Investment Strategy, the project is expected to improve journey times and the surroundings of the World Heritage site. A £17.5M package of work has already been awarded to an Atkins and Arup joint venture, under the Highways England’s Collaborative Framework (CDF), to develop options to take to public consultation and ultimately a preferred route announcement.The scheme, an integral part of creating an A303 “expressway” connecting London to the Southwest, also includes the dualling of the A303 between Sparkford and Ilchester and the A358 between the M5 at Taunton and A303 at Southfields. Construction work is set to start by April 2020.
UK-based property and construction consultancy Gleeds has been selected as project and cost manager on Formal Investments’ £75M commercial redevelopment in Glasgow, Scotland.The proposed development will include a 12-storey new building, incorporating 12,000sq m of Grade A office space on Bath Street, as well as the remodelling and refurbishment of a second building, formerly home to retailer BHS.Furthermore, a third premises located on Sauchiehall Street will be refurbished to include a total area of 22,000sq m.The former BHS site will be knocked down to make way for the new building, with the remaining construction set to include about 7,000sq m of office space above the existing retail offering. Under the contract, Gleeds will provide assistance in appointing additional consultants and managing the entire programme of works, once planning permissions for the project have been received.Gleeds’ director for Glasgow Brian Stevenson said: “I am delighted to be working with Formal Investments on yet another large-scale city centre development.“This scheme has the potential to completely transform both the commercial and public realms of this part of Glasgow and represents a fantastic opportunity for business across the board.”Subject to necessary approvals, work is anticipated to commence in mid-2017.
US-based interconnection and data centre company Equinix is set to construct a new International Business Exchange (IBX) in Amsterdam, Netherlands. To be located at its existing campus at the Amsterdam Science Park, the new data centre — known as AM4 — will meet the increasing demand for the company’s services. Equinix will invest $113M in the first phase of the development that will house 1,555 cabinets.Upon completion of the four expansion phases, the facility will represent a total investment of $189M and will provide 4,200 cabinets spread across eight floors, with a total usable floor area of over 12,000sq m.The building and first phase is expected to be completed and operational by the second quarter of 2017.
Work to upgrade the Farnworth tunnel as part of a route electrification project called for enlargement works, and led to the procurement of a UK-manufactured TBM. Ian Clarke, writing for the manufacturer, reports.Tunnel Engineering Services (TES) recently provided a specially designed tunnel boring machine (TBM) in support of the Network Rail route electrification project between Manchester and Preston via Bolton which when completed will electrify one of the North West's busiest routes and allow faster trains with more passenger space.As part of the construction works there was a requirement to reconstruct/enlarge the Farnworth Tunnel which is on the line about 4km southeast of Bolton. The reconstruction was required because the original tunnel size wouldn’t allow the installation of the new overhead power lines required by the new trains.As well as the tunnel rebuild, some 1,600m of track through the area also had to be lowered to ensure smooth running of the electrified rail line.ChallengesThe original tunnel was constructed in the mid-1830s and runs over a length of some 270m. The construction comprises a mix of brick and stone lining with stone portals through a mix of ground conditions.Prior to the electrification reconstruction works commencing, over 1,500 ground investigation bores were made to establish what ground types would need to be handled by the tunnelling machine during the excavation operation. After examining the market, TES was approached as the potential TBM manufacturer with a brief to design what ultimately proved to be the largest TBM ever constructed in the UK.The TBM, named Fillie, had to bore a new 270m-long tunnel, removing some 30,000t of material and install 1,940 concrete lining segments to complete the new tunnel. Work started at the site in March 2015 in preparation for the arrival of the TBM.Prior to works starting, construction of the TBM itself was something of a challenge. Having to excavate the original tunnel with its Victorian interlocked solid stone work, brick lining and the surrounding ground meant that the design had to be not only durable to enable the very hard stone work to be removed but also flexible enough to enable excavation unit changes relatively quickly and easily as the ground conditions changed during the tunnel advance.The location and proposed route of the new Farnworth Tunnel was such that it effectively required the removal of pretty much all of the existing tunnel alignment and also required the excavation for the new tunnel to, at times, pass very close to the original smaller diameter Farnworth (running) Tunnel that was built in the early 1830s. Because of these proximities it was decided that a full face TBM would not be appropriate for this drive. After careful consideration of the predicted conditions both for ground and tunnelling works, TES, in co-operation with the team from tunnelling contractor J. Murphy & Sons ultimately designed the 9m outside diameter open face shield, with leading edge 'forepoling' boards for initial ground support at the face, that utilised centrally-mounted twin mining booms that could each carry a roadheader drum cutter and/or a bucket excavator. In the event, despite not having been initially designed for this use, ground conditions meant that booms were also utilised with a combination of hydraulic breaker and bucket depending on the ground type encountered.TES received the first enquiry about a possible tunnelling machine from Murphy in November, 2014. The initial brief was that the machine would need to handle foam concrete, solid stone brick and what was believed to be softer ground types along the tunnel bore route. In barely one month an initial design for the excavator-based TBM was presented and Murphy agreed to proceed, provided the unit was ready to be on site no later than July 2015.In just seven months, by July 2015 TES had completed the design, built and completed testing on the shield section of the tunnelling machine. By the end of July, whilst TES was finalising testing of the segment lining erector in the yard, engineers from Murphy were dismantling the front end of the shield alongside TES engineers for transport to site. The complete unit was ultimately dismantled at the TES yard in just two days. At the Farnworth Tunnel site, in association with TES engineers, Murphy rebuilt the whole machine in just five days. The machine commenced tunnelling immediately on completion of the build.Tunnelling worksWhilst the machine was under construction, from March 2015, Murphy had commenced preparation works with the construction of the launch portal for the TBM and filled the old tunnel from end to end completely with 7,500m3 of foam concrete. This was intended to provide support to the old tunnel and surrounding ground as it was excavated. Despite the more than 1,500 test holes drilled to investigate the ground conditions, the drive actually encountered far more sand than was predicted.The excavation removed all of the old tunnel, upsizing the diameter by some 2 to 3m to 9m o.d. The route ran mostly on the line of the old tunnel which included an existing curve. The new tunnel curve however was not as tight as the old one to allow the new route to handle the newer trains. However, the new tunnel route passed very close to the alignment of the Farnworth (running) Tunnel, passing by with as little as 2m clearance at times.As well as removing the old tunnel, the new route also required the invert of the old tunnel to be excavated because the upsizing of the existing tunnel was confined vertically due to limited ground cover over the drive. However, once the new track is completed the track horizon is not expected to be much lower than the old track.At the start of tunnelling works the excavator booms were fitted with roadheader drum cutters which were used to cut through the old tunnel headwall. The high stone strength caused significant vibrations when cutting which meant that the use of the drum cutters had to be limited. So, once sufficient of the headwall was removed it was decided to exchange the drum cutters for hydraulic pick units or peckers to limit the impact of excavation vibrations on the machine structure. Whilst the original TBM design did not take into account the use of peckers, the interchange was made possible with minor modifications so the tunnelling process could proceed. However ground conditions deteriorated into running sand at times which caused delays as Murphy had to inject ground stabilisation resins ahead of the face.This was also a necessity where the tunnel ran beneath the alignment of the A666 road. As the tunnel passed beneath the road, the surface experienced some anticipated subsidence. However plans had been put into place should this occur and the road was resurfaced back to its original level during an overnight operation with minimal, if any, disruption to this busy traffic route.It proved possible to safely excavate while concurrently installing and grouting sections of the tunnel wall as was originally planned. At one other point in the excavation a running sand inrush occurred with some 100t of sand burying the machine face. This caused a further delay as the site had to be open cut using a shaft to re-stabilise the ground over the TBM face. However the remedial works worked very well and despite the ground problems the TBM completed the new 270m tunnel on 30 October 2015.
London’s Crossrail project not only now has an official name — it was revealed the the cross-city rail system will be called the Elizabeth line — it is also less than a year away from the start of the first testing phase.It was a year ago that tunnelling was completed — using two tunnel boring machines (TBMs) called Victoria and Elizabeth, continuing with the regal theme.That followed three years of tunnelling that started in May 2012, and now, four years on, the project is approaching 75% complete, says Crossrail project manager Nisrine Chartouny.The first services will start in May 2017 with trains running from Shenfield to Liverpool Street. The tunnels below the capital and ten new stations in central London will open in December 2018 and the line will open fully in December 2019, when it will connect Reading and Heathrow in the west with Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.It’s the largest transport project in Europe, and will add around 10% to the capacity of London’s rail network, serving 40 stations — ten of which are new for the project. An estimated 200M passengers will ride the line each year.
Select Property Group has received planning consent for the construction of two residential developments in Manchester, UK.The two buildings, Affinity Living Riverside and Affinity Living Riverview, will include 506 housing units and operate under Select’s Affinity Living brand.The 35-storey building, Riverview, will feature 318 apartments, while the 17-storey building, Riverside, will include 188 apartments.The development — to be located on New Bailey Street ‑ will feature a range of both indoor and outdoor social spaces and facilities, including lounge areas to be open to the public, private dining rooms, co-working spaces and a gym.Additionally, Riverview’s level 35 will involve the construction of a roof garden, a media room and private entertainment space.Select Property Group CEO Mark Stott said: “Affinity Living Riverside and Riverview promises to bring something exceptional to a generation of professional young renters in a highly sought after area of the city. We are delighted to have been granted planning permission and look forward to starting work on the site.”Enabling works are anticipated to start in October 2016 with Affinity Living Riverside scheduled for completion at the end of the first quarter of 2018 and Riverview in the fourth quarter of 2019.
US-based aircraft manufacturing firm Boeing is set to construct a new £100M facility at RAF Lossiemouth in Moray, Scotland, UK.The new location will be the home to the new fleet of nine P-8A Poseidon military aircraft ordered by the UK government in 2015. Apart from the construction of the new base, Boeing is selling nine Boeing P-8 Poseidon aircraft, which will operate from the Moray airbase alongside the RAF's squadrons of Typhoon and Tornado jets.Former UK prime minister David Cameron said: “Whatever uncertainties our country faces, I want the message to go out loud and clear: the UK will continue to lead the world in both civil and defence aerospace.“We aren’t just open for investment: we are a place the global aerospace industry wants to do business – as Boeing’s long-term partnership with the UK proves.”The project is expected to create more than 100 new jobs in the region.
Liebherr has sold its 90,000th truck mixer, to Transbeton, based in Laupheim.Transbeton’s managing director Reinhold Brehm personally collected the HTM 1004 ZA semitrailer, which has a nominal capacity of 10cb m. The company has been a loyal Liebherr customer for almost 50 years and has around 20 truck mixers and concrete mixing plants from the manufacturer.“I always have two semitrailers in my fleet because it increases our transportation capacity for large concrete plants,” said Brehm. “If the workload is not quite as heavy, we use tractor units to transport gravel or cement. This flexibility makes my fleet more profitable.”According to the manufacturer, the semitrailers benefit their customers through reliability, long service life and safety. Liebherr has been manufacturing truck mixers worldwide since 1967.
Plans for a Helsinki–Tallinn undersea rail tunnel are a step closer to reality after Finnish and Estonian ministers signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) earlier this year.The MOU binds the two states to further investigate the viability and economic impact of the tunnel’s construction.The 50-mile undersea rail tunnel has been on the table for almost a decade, with multiple studies considering the potential for socio-economic development between the two cities.According to a study financed by the European Union EUBSR Seed Money Facility, published in February 2015, the project is set to be a success.Predicted to treble travel and boost trade, the tunnel, if built, will be one of the longest underwater railway tunnels in the world, serving four million people living within a 200km radius of both capitals. It will also carry about half of future cargo traffic in the area.25,000 daily commuter trips are to be expected in the first ten years after the opening of the railway, which promises improved accessibility and reduced commuting times from the current two-and-a-half hours by ferry to a 30-minute journey. The revenue generated by passenger traffic would amount to €67bn by 2080.Trains will be able to carry 800 passengers each and cargo with a total capacity of 96/TEU, reaching speeds of 250 km/h.Expected to take eight to ten years to be finished, the total cost of the development can vary between €9bn and €13bn and construction work can start anytime between 2025 and 2030. Further plans include the construction of a €3.6bn Rail Baltica high-speed train line to link Finland, the Baltic States and Poland, improving the connection between central and northern Europe.Socio-Economic ImpactA decisive factor on the tunnel’s construction is its ability to boost economic activity in the Nordic region.The region can become one of the significant centres in Northern Europe, as the two cities house more than 2.5M inhabitants and see over 7.5M passengers travel annually by ferry for business or tourism purposes. By 2080, the total number of passengers between the two cities is expected to reach 41M.Although transport via the new tunnel is slated to bring a 1–3% increase to Finland’s GDP within 20 years in operation, that will not be replicated in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, which will see only an increase of 0.5% in GDP.Both countries are expected to collect the benefits of the wider consumer market and shared labour market that the tunnel would open to.The European study concludes: "The figures also show that direct and indirect benefits during the construction and operation period to the economy of both countries are remarkable. “The competitiveness of the twin-city area will be strengthened by improved accessibility, new companies and business, better image and a variety in living options.”Risks and ChallengesThe project poses risks in the construction and execution phases as well as economic, political and technological challenges.In its initial phase, the tunnel’s main problems are related to the geology at the proposed exit location in Estonia, as an important source of water supply for the city is located there.Apart from the uncertainty surrounding its funding, the study also warns that "globally, the political risk for the project progress could be a culmination of the crisis between East and West."At a national level, tensions might arise due to the different process and culture surrounding of the decision-making process."The political success of the tunnel project will depend on the wideness of its impact area and how it is combined with the whole transport system of both countries," the study says.These are still early days for any clear decision, but a potential next step for the project would be the foundation of a Finnish-Estonian project organisation followed by a full feasibility study to make it clear when the tunnel is to be expected.According to Hannes Virkus, an adviser at the Estonian ministry of economic affairs, real decisions shouldn't be expected before 2018.* This is a version of an article that first appeared at www.railway-technology.com.
Construction has started on Scotland’s biggest waste water tunnel, using a tunnel boring machine named Daisy.The Shieldhall Tunnel will be constructed for Scottish Water by the Glasgow Tunnel Partnership, run by a commercial joint venture between Costain and Vinci Construction Grands Projets called CVJV.The £100M tunnel measures 5km in length and forms a key part of Scottish Water’s £250M five-year programme of work to enhance river water quality and the natural environment.The 1,000t TBM being used for the projects measures 180m in length and will commence construction on the tunnel between Craigton and Queen’s Park. The machine was named Daisy the Driller by Lewis Bennett of Craigton Primary School, through a competition run by Scottish Water. The TBM is expected to complete its journey and emerge at Queen’s Park after nearly 13 months, when the new tunnel will be connected to the existing network.The cabinet secretary for environment, climate change and land reform Roseanna Cunningham has launched the tunnel boring machine (TBM) for the project.Scottish Water CEO Douglas Millican said: “The Shieldhall Tunnel is the biggest of many projects which are progressing deep beneath the Greater Glasgow area’s streets largely out of sight of most people who live, work and travel here.“Much of the existing waste water infrastructure was built in Victorian times and the modernisation of the system and construction of new underground assets such as the Shieldhall Tunnel will enable Greater Glasgow to realise its above-ground aspirations.”The project is expected to be complete by the end of 2017.
Specialist regeneration and development firm Urbo has submitted plans for a £175M mixed-use development project at West Bar, Sheffield.The West Bar Square project comprises 10 buildings, each with self-contained parking.The scheme, fronting Sheffield’s inner relief road, will create up to 130,000sq m of space, most of which will be office space.The application also includes plans for apartments blocks, a four-star hotel, restaurants, retail units and public spaces.The project presents a significant step forward in the regeneration of Sheffield’s Riverside Business District, which already contains major employers such as the Home Office and lawyers Irwin Mitchell.Peter Swallow, Urbo’s managing director, said: “We’re delighted to move West Bar Square to the next level. It is a very significant development for the city and will create a premier business district to attract major employers.“There has also been strong interest in private rented sector apartments with many investment funds eager to house people in a purpose-built environment.”Site assembly and clearance is already underway to enable the earliest possible start on site, subject to planning approval.
John Mcaslan + Partners is developing proposals for Baitul Futuh Mosque in Morden, South London.The project’s priority is to reinstate all fire-damaged elements of the mosque — to be the largest in Western Europe — as it was destroyed in a fire in 2015. The proposals also include a new façade, courtyard space, increased accommodation, as well as vehicle and pedestrian entrances.Ahmadiyya Muslim Community UK national president Rafiq Hayat said: “John McAslan + Partners are world renowned architects and the proposed design reflects their high standard of creativity and expertise that is also shaping how we can better manage the flow and space in and around the complex.”John McAslan, John McAslan + Partners chairman said: “We are honoured to have been given this prestigious opportunity to design a long-term, strategic masterplan for the Baitul Futuh Mosque, which serves one of Europe’s most significant Muslim communities.”The mosque is set to the largest in Western Europe.
DONG Energy has been awarded the concession to build the Netherlands’ offshore wind farms Borssele 1 and 2 from Netherlands’ Minister of Economic Affairs.The wind farms will have a capacity of two times 350MW and will cover the annual power consumption of 1M Dutch households.The project will be located 22km from the coast of Zeeland province, with a water depth of 14-38m, and covering an area of 128.3sq km. DONG Energy’s wind power head and executive vice president Samuel Leupold said: “Winning this tender in a highly competitive field of bidders is another proof of our market-leading position and our business model which builds on continued innovation, industrialisation and scale. “With Borssele 1 and 2, we’re crossing the levelized cost of electricity mark of EUR 100 per MWh for the first time and are reaching a critical industry milestone more than three years ahead of time. This demonstrates the great potential of offshore wind.”The company will build the wind farms within four years with a flexibility of one year.
Carillion has secured a contract to build the first building of Birmingham’s transformational Paradise Scheme.The UK-based company is the phase one enabling and infrastructure contractor for the £500M mixed-use project, and has now been named as the contractor for the seven-storey contemporary building. The 16,000sq m ‘One Chamberlain Square’ will include a roof terrace on the sixth floor and restaurants and retail units on the ground level. Simon Dingle, Carillion’s operations director, said: “Paradise is a crucial project for the city and Carillion is very proud to be playing such a major role in its delivery. “We are looking forward to completing the enabling works on the site and being able to bring our considerable experience to construct One Chamberlain Square.”The Paradise scheme will involve the development of commercial, civic, retail, leisure and hotel space, as well as improving pedestrian access and enhancing public realm.The project is being developed through Paradise Circus Limited Partnership (PCLP) — a private-public joint venture with Birmingham City Council.
Construction has commenced on Foster + Partners’ multi-million transformation of one of Stockholm’s oldest locks into a dynamic urban quarter in Stockholm, Sweden.The SEK12bn ($1.4bn) project, known as New Slussen, has been designed by Foster + Partners in collaboration with the city of Stockholm.The project will replace the lock’s dilapidated water and transport infrastructure.The new masterplan offers an opportunity to readdress balance between road vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists while enhancing the public realm.The development will include a new civic quarter that will provide transport links alongside new public buildings, new restaurants, cafes and cultural amenities.It will also feature a ‘Water Plaza’ — a pedestrianised public space arranged around the new navigation lock and realigned quayside.Foster + Partners’ head of design Spencer de Grey said: “The City of Stockholm has truly embraced a wonderful opportunity to re-establish and reinforce the vital link between Stockholm’s central islands of Södermalm and the heritage site of Gamla stan, rehabilitating the historic fabric of the city while creating a lively new urban destination for all.“This is a once in a life time undertaking in a uniquely significant and spectacular setting. We are honoured and very proud to be a part of this incredible and visionary project.”
POSCO E&C has completed construction on a waste-to-power plant in Krakow, Poland.The plant, delivered for Krakow Communal Holding, was constructed in three and a half years.The $250M facility — the largest daily waste incinerating facility in Poland — is capable of processing 220,000t of household waste annually in an eco-friendly way.
Balfour Beatty has won a £170M contract to upgrade the baggage screening and handling systems for Heathrow Airport Limited in London. The project, awarded through Heathrow Airport Limited Delivery Integrator Framework to which Balfour Beatty was appointed in 2014, will include the upgrading and installing of a baggage screening and handling systems at Heathrow’s eastern baggage facility.The company will utilise the latest Building Information Modelling techniques to define the most efficient approach to design, manage logistics and to interface with live airport operations.Leo Quinn, Balfour Beatty Group chief executive, said: “This contract award is testament to the strength of the partnership we have developed with Heathrow Airport Limited over the last 17 years. “The UK aviation sector is a core market for Balfour Beatty and we are delighted to play our part in helping Heathrow maintain its position as a leading travel hub and supporting local employment.”
UK-based commercial property developer Stoford announced that work has commenced on a new multi-million pound high-tech facility near Bournemouth Airport.The project includes the construction of a 15,000sq m unit, comprising 4,000sq m of offices and an 11,000sq m production unit, on a 10.64-acre site.According to the developer, forward funding for the project has been concluded with Global Gate Capital, together with its simultaneous acquisition of a nine-acre site form Bournemouth airport operator and owner MAG Property.Stoford’s joint managing director Matt Burgin said: “We are excited to unveil the plans for the facility at Aviation Business Park at Bournemouth Airport, in association with MAG Property. “The new development will bring a significant amount of investment to the south coast, providing new jobs and more opportunities for the surrounding area.”Rudy Sayegh, CEO at Global Gate Capital, said: “We are delighted to have completed this forward funding, our second with Stoford Developments in recent months, and we are looking to invest a further £100M in such property in 2016.”Planning was approved by Christchurch Borough Council last year after proposals were submitted by Stoford and the land owner MAG Property — the property and development arm of Manchester Airports Group (MAG).