UK’s large new £5bn tunnel lastly completed however vacationers won’t ever have the ability to stroll down it | UK | News | EUROtoday

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The building of a £5billion tunnel in London has been accomplished after eight years – however you may by no means have the ability to stroll down it. Thames Tideway Tunnel is a 25km-long tremendous sewer designed to slash the extent of sewage air pollution alongside a bit of the River Thames via central London.

Tens of hundreds of thousands of tonnes of storm sewage spill into the river yearly, however as soon as operational the tremendous sewer ought to scale back spills totally, in line with its backers.

The last piece of the tunnel – a 1,200 tonne concrete lid – was lifted into place on prime of a deep shaft at Abbey Mills Pumping Station in Stratford, east London, on Wednesday (March 27).

Tideway has now constructed the total 15.5 miles (25km) principal tunnel, a 3 mile (4.5km) connection tunnel in south east London and a 1,100m tunnel in south west London.

The firm’s Chief Exec Andy Mitchell mentioned in a press release : “This is the moment we’ve all been waiting for. The underground civil engineering on the Tideway project is now complete following eight years of dedicated hard work from all our teams working in the capital.

“There remains to be work to do – we have to end some above-ground buildings and, crucially, check the system – however this nonetheless marks a fully vital milestone for the Tideway venture and for London.”

Tideway expects expect the sewer to be fully operational in 2025, after testing of the tunnel system.

The Abbey Mills shaft is the deepest of the project at 70m and is the point where the super sewer meets up with the Lee Tunnel, completed in 2016.

It took five hours to lift the 24m wide lid into position with the use of a purpose-built gantry crane and other manoeuvring equipment.

The manoeuvre represents the heaviest lift on the project, surpassing the lifting of Tideway’s six tunnel boring machines earlier on in the build, according to Tideway.

Robert Ricketts, Tideway’s Project Manager at Abbey Mills Pumping Station, said: “This manoeuvre was a posh operation and required cautious collaboration between numerous groups engaged on this venture.

“I’m absolutely delighted the lid is now in place and would like to thank everyone involved in getting us to this stage.”

Storm sewage flows are because of be diverted into the tunnel over the summer time, with Tideway persevering with constructing and landscaping work at websites alongside its route.

The jap stretch of the venture is the results of a three way partnership between Costain, Vinci Construction Grands Projets and Bachy Soletanche.

News of the tunnel’s building comes because it emerged storm overflows dumped sewage into rivers and seas throughout England for greater than 3.6 million hours in 2023.

The knowledge revealed by the Environment Agency (EA) reveal there have been 464,056 spills in 2023, up 54 % from 301,091 in 2022, which the organisation mentioned was partly because of England experiencing its sixth-wettest yr on report.

Storm overflows dump untreated sewage into rivers and the ocean normally throughout heavy rainfall to cease sewers backing up.

The figures have been described as “disappointing”, however “sadly not surprising” by the EA whereas campaigners mentioned the size of discharges was a “final indictment of a failing industry”.

Sewage spill durations greater than doubled from 1,754,921 hours in 2022, to three,606,170 hours in 2023, the figures present.

Both the frequency and period of spills have been additionally up on 2020 ranges, which noticed comparable quantities of rainfall.