Thames Tideway has begun its latest tunnel drive. It involves construction of the Frogmore Connection Tunnel which will connect overflow sewers to the main project.
The latest tunnel will connect smaller overflow sewers in King George’s Park to the main Thames Tideway Tunnel at Fulham. From there sewage will be transferred to east London for treatment, instead of being dumping into the Thames.
A tunnel boring machine (TBM) will tunnel 500m under Wandsworth, from Dormay Street to King George’s Park, before headin back to Dormay Street and tunnelling another 600m under the River Thames to connect to the main tunnel at Tideway’s Carnwath Road site later this year.
Tideway has refurbished a 3m-wide former Thames Water TBM to complete the 1.1km job.
Frogmore Connection Tunnel section manager Kevin Dollard said rebuilding a TBM instead of ordering a new one cut project costs. “Because of the dimensions of the tunnel, we were able to refurbish one of Morgan Sindall’s TBMs instead of building a new one from scratch, testament to our approach towards sustainability and the circular economy,” he said.
“Some of our team have even worked on the TBM before on other projects, and are looking forward to seeing the machine up and running again to build a new, important piece of infrastructure.”
Tideway project manager for shafts and tunnels Ciaran McQuaid said the connection tunnel will divert hundreds of tonnes of sewage away from the river. “While our tunnel is a bit smaller than the main super sewer, it will play a vital role in helping to clean up the River Thames by helping to stop around 100,000t of sewage ending up in the river,” he said.
“The team is really looking forward to getting to work on tunnelling and getting Charlotte to King George’s Park later in the year.”
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