PORR team wins €1bn contract to build rail tunnel in Austria


A consortium, comprising PORR, Hinteregger (a subsidiary PORR acquired in 2017) as well as joint venture partners from Italy, has signed a contract worth around €1bnwith the European Brenner Base Tunnel (BBT) project company to build Lot H51 Pfons-Brenner of the Brenner Base Tunnel in Austria.

The Italian partners are Società Italiana per Condotte d’Acqua and Itinera.

The Federal Administrative Court had again confirmed the award of the tender for the largest construction lot in Austria’s history in July 2018.

The contract for Lot H51 Pfons-Brenner involves construction of a tunnel of around 18km.

Work on the Brenner Base Tunnel in Wolf/Steinach will begin shortly and the construction is planned for completion in 2024.

The construction phase for Lot H51 involves building two main tunnel tubes between Pfons and Brenner, around 9km of exploratory shafts, and the emergency zone at St Jodok.

The two main, single-track tunnel tubes will primarily be driven with tunnel-boring machines (TBMs) with an excavation diameter of 10.37 metres. A stretch of up to 30 metres can be driven per day per TBM.

The excavation of the exploratory tunnel will be carried out by drill and blast method and secured with shotcrete. The entire lot will be supplied through a single access tunnel.

PORR CEO Karl-Heinz Strauss said: “We are exceptionally proud to have received the tender for Austria’s largest tunnel project to date.

“The 18km-long ‘Pfons-Brenner’ lot presents a genuine challenge in view of the complex geology and the restricted space available.

“You can only be charged with a construction project in the region of €1bn if you have the right skills and expertise – perfectly in line with the PORR philosophy.”

PORR’s tunnelling experience includes driving more than 600km of tunnels and the group has already built an exploratory and access tunnel for the Brenner Base Tunnel.


Image: Officials at the signing of the contract for Brenner Base Tunnel in Wolf/Steinach in Austria. Photo: courtesy of PORR AG.

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