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Metro Tunnel

Second roadheader arrives at State Library Station

Posted: 28 Feb 2019

A second roadheader is set to commence excavation at the end of February from the Franklin Street east shaft. This machine will start excavating under Swanston Street, east to west, as it creates an underground passenger connection. It’ll be launched 26 metres underground in the coming days.

The project’s first roadheader machine, launched from the A’Beckett Street shaft in late November 2018, has excavated a total of 30 metres out of the A’Beckett Street shaft underneath Swanston Street.

A third roadheader will be launched from the A’Beckett Street shaft by mid-March, and a fourth from the La Trobe Street site later this year. The four machines will work together to form State Library Station, which will be 240 metres long and 30 metres wide. The total platform width at the CBD stations will be around 19 metres – some of the widest underground metro platforms in the world.

Roadheaders are massive excavating machines fitted with a mounted cutter head that will excavate the huge underground caverns for both Metro Tunnel CBD stations - State Library and Town Hall.

The machines will excavate around 1500 tonnes of rock each day, with the cutter head able to smash through rock three times harder than concrete. Each roadheader includes a highly advanced computer with a mathematically-based guidance system used to accurately excavate the cavern.

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