Crossrail tunnel boring machine (TBM) Ellie has started the 900m journey from Limmo Peninsula, near Canning Town, towards Victoria Dock Portal in east London.
Over the next three months, the 1,000t machine will complete one of Crossrail’s shortest but most complex tunnels, in close proximity to the Jubilee line, Docklands Light Railway, River Thames and River Lea.
The drive will complete tunnelling on Crossrail’s southeast spur, which stretches from Stepney Green to Abbey Wood.
Ellie’s sister TBM, Jessica, completed the first of the two twin-tunnels from Limmo to Victoria Dock earlier this summer.
Crossrail will complete its rail tunnels next year when tunnel machines Elizabeth and Victoria, currently in Whitechapel, reach Farringdon in central London.
Andrew Wolstenholme, Crossrail chief executive, said: “Huge amounts of planning go into every tunnel drive, and this one is no different. We are deploying some of the world’s best engineering talent and machinery to safely build these new tunnels.”
Ellie has already completed a tunnel from Pudding Mill Lane, near Stratford, to Stepney Green.