|Farringdon Crossrail Site 26th November 2014|
By special invitation to tour the development of the Crossrail hub at Farringdon was a wonderful surprise and I could not sleep the night before with the excitement and anticipation of this visit.
There were only six of us who were met by the Project Manager at the turnstile to the Charterhouse Entrance of the site. We had a stringent Health & Safety talk prior to donning our PPE, trousers, jackets, boots, hard hats, glasses and gloves, thankfully orange is my favourite colour! Health & Safety and protection throughout the site for everyone is a super high priority, you are aware of this wherever you go. Warnings, signs, briefings at various levels as to what was going on, whistles blowing, watch our for red lights monitoring air quality control. This is not the kind of building site I played on when I was a kid!
For all this the vast hole created to get the Tunnel Boring Machines (TBM) in was now fast being covered over and filled in with structures to house escalators, lifts, plants, concourses, exits and entrances, service tunnels, all now taking shape, since the TBMs fell silent.
|Farringdon site November 2014|
|Farringdon July 2015|
|The white tubes are acting as supports they will be removed|
|Shuttering going up for the concrete wall - the escaltor pit is behind it|
|The mesh screen in the background is concealing the Underground Line from Barbican|
|Above ground level with Long Lane in the distance|
|Up against the site off Long Lane.|
They have moved out temporarily whilst building works going on!
|Escaltor shaft in awkward place therefore dug out by diggers and then concrete|
sprayed via a splended machine directed by man in 'spacesuit'
|Concrete buttresses to base of concrete walls.|
The stabilisers across top of photo will be removed eventually.
|One of the tunnels awiting waterproof lining and final layer of concrete finish|
|Going deeper, if the beacon goes red we have to leave fast as air quailty compromised.|
|Final level, as deep as we go.|
|Elizabeth the TBM her work is done. Looks epic and most spectacular in size and form.|
|Endless air tunnels, funnels and equipment|
|Victoria TBM being dismantled. All her innards removed and the frame then|
moved along and hoisted out (I think?)
The TBM are taken apart by the men who built them - specialists.
|A large chunck of Victoria - the whole machine is recycled.|
Too heavy to take a momento.
|Fascinated by this huge pulsating vacuum that keeps air flowing.|
|The orange waterproof liner, which includes in the black strips pipes to allow grouting to be|
poured in at a later stage if cracks or damage appears - forward thinking.
Tunnels guaranteed 120 years but will last much longer.
|A finished main tunnel to the right, the left is a service tunnel.|
The east-west breakthrough stretching from Paddington in the west to Woolwich in the east is complete to achieve this it required:
- 8 tunnel boring machines
- 7 million tonnes of excavated earth
- 250,000 concrete segments
- 3 years of underground construction
- 42 kilometres of running tunnels
- 98% excavated earth has been beneficially reused at sites across South East
- Tunnelling works accompanied by one of the largest archaeological programmes in the UK
Read more about Farringdon Crossrail at http://www.crossrail.co.uk/route/stations/farringdon/current-works/