3 companies are building the new $2.8 billion train line under Sydney Harbour

An artist’s impression of the tunnel. Source: John Holland.

Australian engineering company John Holland and CIMIC Group company CPB Contractors have been given an equal share in a contract to build the $2.81 billion Sydney Metro harbour rail crossing.

The NSW government announced the joint venture contract involves companies CPB Contractors (45%), John Holland (45%) and Ghella (10%) for twin 15.5km tunnels and civil works for six new metro stations.

The tunnels will be excavated by five tunnel boring machines (TBMs) between Chatswood and Sydenham, including a specialised TBM to build the tunnels beneath Sydney Harbour. The first TBM will be in the ground by the end of 2017.

The new stations will be built at Crows Nest, Victoria Cross, Barangaroo, Martin Place, Pitt Street and Waterloo. The government is buying 150 properties between Sydney’s CBD and Bankstown for the line.

John Holland CEO Joe Barr said Australia’s largest public transport project was a “one-in-a-generation project (that) will transform the rail network in Sydney”.

“Our construction solution addresses the challenges of intricate underground construction in the heart of the Sydney CBD. We will use barges on Sydney Harbour to help minimise impacts on the road network at the Barangaroo and Blues Point work sites.”

Construction is scheduled to commence on the TSE Works in the coming weeks, with the contract expected to be completed in 2021.

NSW transport minister Andrew Constance said the new metro line will eventually stretch 66km and connect dozens of suburbs along the way.

“When services through the City start in 2024, the tunnels will move more people than the Harbour Bridge and Sydney Harbour Tunnel combined,” he said.

The Sydney Metro City & Southwest project is expected to cost up to $12.5 billion.

Tunnelling on Stage 1 of the Sydney Metro finished in January last year, with services on the Sydney Metro Northwest due to start in 2019.

The Sydney Metro line. Source: NSW Government

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