Construction Journal

Sept. 14, 2020

Thick things over the Alex-Tunnel

Gefundener Leitungskanal ALX Leichterung August 2020 © A. Reetz-Graudenz

We have reported about it here several times before: The load over the Alex tunnel must be reduced so that the new U5 can pass through safely. The underground still presents us with a whole series of unexpected challenges. For example, old ammunition has already been found, and also 30 percent more lines than were originally drawn in the plans - and this despite the fact that extensive searches were carried out in advance.

Here is an illustrative example:

During the excavation of the ground, a large, approximately one meter wide conduit was discovered that was not included in any plan. In order to find out whether anything was still flowing through these pipes that might have to be relocated, all possible pipe carriers - from Vattenfall to water companies - were contacted. They all inspected the canal. Good news: no gas or electricity flowed through the pipes. Bad news: The canal with pipes from the 60s or 70s did not belong to anyone. In the end it remained unclear what this canal was once used for and by whom. But one thing is clear after a good 10 days: it can be safely removed.

These processes are very time-consuming and cannot be planned in advance. As a result, there are always selective delays, so that work has to be rescheduled in order to meet the ambitious schedule for reducing the load on the Alex-Tunnel.

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