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Helping design Crossrail

London's Crossrail is the most ambitious transport scheme in London and the South East for fifty years. It's also the biggest construction project in Europe. We are part of the design team.

Designed to join the Great Western and Great Eastern railway networks, Crossrail is a 118 kilometre rail link running from Maidenhead and Heathrow to Shenfield and Abbey Wood. New stations, able to accommodate 200 metre trains, are being built at Paddington, Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Farringdon, Liverpool Street, Whitechapel, Canary Wharf and Woolwich. At the height of construction it is estimated that up to 14,000 people will be employed on the project through the supply chain.

In 2008, our property and infrastructure business won a contract to design the tunnels and portals. We put together a multi-disciplinary team - civils, architects and M&E engineers – which is designing two portals to RIBA D, E, and F designs, together with gaining all planning and environmental consents.

Royal Oak portal

The Royal Oak Portal provides a transition from overground to underground sections of Crossrail. Tunnel boring machines will be launched from this structure. We completed ahead of schedule.

North Woolwich and Plumstead portals

The Plumstead Portal is the launch point for the machines that will create twin bore tunnels between Custom House and Abbey Wood and will form the main entry point from east London to the Thames tunnel. The portal structures are around 420 metres long and consist of a retained cut, a cut and cover section, mechanical and electrical plant rooms and emergency intervention and escape points.

For both projects, we're providing:

  • tunnel portal structure
  • propped, retained cuts
  • retained cut, taking the railway to grade
  • escape and intervention facilities at the portal, including surface holding area
  • plant rooms and associated service routes
  • E&M services to provide the necessary power, lighting, ventilation to support plant rooms and escape and intervention facilities
  • flood protection
  • attenuation tank for surface water discharge
  • above ground structure for plant rooms and escape
  • access road and parking for emergency and maintenance vehicles
  • relocation of Marcon sewer
  • new foul and surface water connections
  • provision of construction space to assemble and operate tunnel boring machines, including spoil removal and segment delivery and storage.

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