From the Emirates Air-Line it looks like serious work s winding down at the Crossrail site at Limmo, where the tunnel boring machines; Elizabeth and Victoria, were inserted into a massive hole, to start their journeys to Farringdon via Canary Wharf.
The conveyors are still in place and a ship was there to be loaded with spoil to be taken to Wallasea Island.
Over the years it has been fascinating to see how how the work for Crossrail has started, increased and is now starting to finish, from the DLR and the cable car.
When completed the tunnels will go under where I took the picture to the next station, which is Canary Wharf. Custom House station and the crane used to put the pieces together is in the distance to the left of the electricity pylons.
Rude words are allowed when talking about Crossrail, as one of the female project managers used the F-word in the documentary.
When did serious engineering programs get such coverage?
The Times has a report, if you’re a subscriber, but there’s nothing in the Guardian.
Part of this episode told a history of tunneling through the last fifty years, through old film and the eyes of one of the tunnellers, who’s been digging for fifty years, starting with manual methods on the Victoria line.
It is fascinating to see how techniques have improved even over the last couple of decades.
Just as with North Sea Oil exploration, where projects got easier, as cranes got bigger, it looks like tunnelling will get easier, as tunnel boring machines get bigger, more powerful and better designed.
So when they build Crossrail 2 will it be a quick and more financially efficient project? Having spoken to some of the planners of the project on Friday at Dalston Library, I suspect it will be. Especially, as they are cutting out one of the Hackney stations to save a billion and moving one terminus from Alexandra Park to New Southgate stations.
The lessons learned on Crossrail will also effect HS2, where I suspect we’l see even more tunnels, in the final design.
The new Crossrail station at Custom House is started to look like a station.
It is being built in the clean environment of a factory near Sheffield and the quality of the concrete shines through.
On a bus recently, I talked to a young lady, who is involved in the production of this station and she said we’ll be seeing a lot more of these factory-produced Lego-like buildings in the future.
I went to this exhibition this morning, which shows how the various stations on Crossrail will look.
It was certainly a good free exhibition and whetted my appetite for what is to come.
When asked in the House of Lords about the cost of extending Crossrail to Reading, Baroness Kramer, the Transport minister, said it would save £10million. It’s all reported here in New Civil Engineer. As it has been reported for some time Crossrail and the Great Western Main Line electrification will share some infrastructure like transformers, I don’t think the cost saving is unexpected.
What probably shows more of this train is this excellent YouTube video.
Looking at the video and comparing the images with say travelling in a familiar Class 378 on the Overground, you notice several differences.
The biggest difference is that the French train is wider and taller in cross-section than the British train. This is due to the much more generous Continental loading gauge, which the designers of the train have used to their advantage.
Another big difference is getting into and out of the trains. On the Class 378 and probably the Class 345, it’s just a simple step across, but on the French train, an extra step emerges from the train and it’s a double step into the train. How would the French train cope with platform edge doors, like those that will be installed on Crossrail? I ask this question as European safety legislation insists on these in all stations in tunnels.
I think we’ll be seeing lots of little articles like this one from the Maidenhead Advertiser in the next few months. This is the guts of the report.
The first visible phase of building work to prepare Maidenhead Station for the arrival of Crossrail is set to begin.
Network Rail contractors are due to arrive at the site in Braywick Road on Saturday and will be a permanent fixture throughout the summer.
Changes to the station including lengthened platforms to make room for 10-car Crossrail trains, a new lift, enhanced station information facilities, security systems and CCTV equipment.
The article goes on to say that 10,000 people will be working on Crossrail on 40 sites before the line opens in 2019.
It is a very large project.