Metros Tenders

ITD’s Chennai Metro TBM Pelican Starts Tunneling from Panagal Park


ITD Cementation India today commissioned tunnel boring machine S-1075B (TBM Pelican) at Panagal Park Crossover’s Launch Shaft for constructing underground tunnels on Chennai Metro’s 26.1 km Line-4 (Poonamallee Bypass – Light House).

This is the first TBM to start excavation on Package UG-2 (Kodambakkam Flyover – Boat Club) of the 116.1 km Chennai Metro Phase 2 project. Overall its the third TBM to start tunneling on the entire Line-4 after TBM Flamingo (S-1352A) and TBM Eagle (S-1073B), both from Light House Station on Package UG-1.

Photo by a follower

This Ø6.67m Herrenknecht EPB machine had previously been deployed by CEC – ITD – Tata JV as TBM Krishna-3 and built 3 tunnels for Package UGC-04 of Mumbai Metro’s 33.5 km Line-3 (Aqua Line).

The machine was then refurbished and passed factory acceptance tests (FAT) in August 2023 at Herrenknecht’s Tamil Nadu plant in Thiruvallur District’s Alinjivakkam Village. ITD’s team began lowering its parts into Panagal Park’s shaft earlier this month.

From Panagal Park, TBM Pelican will dig and build a roughly 1100 meter tunnel for the up-line from Panagal Park Crossover to Kodambakkam as part of its first assignment. Per CMRL’s press release, the machine will dig at a maximum depth of 18.5m and they expect it to arrive at Kodambakkam by December 2024.

CMRL’s May 2023 updated Chennai Metro Phase 2 Map – view Phase 2 information & route map

Chennai Metro Rail Ltd (CMRL) had awarded ITD Cem with Line-4’s two underground contracts for packages UG-01 (5.15 km) & UG-02 (4.87 km) in January 2022 with a combined contract value of Rs. 3743.24 crore and 48 month deadline.

Temporary ring building activity by TBM Pelican is planned to start within the shaft on Thursday.

ITD’s Chennai Metro TBM Pelican Starts Tunneling from Panagal Park
Photo by Irshad Alam
Photo by Irshad Alam
Panagal Park Crossover’s Shaft – photo by CMRL

Chennai’s Line-4 consists of roughly 16 kms of TBM tunnels (up & down line) for which ITD Cementation will deploy 4 machines. Here’s the status of each:

  • S-1352A (Flamingo) on UG-01 – Started tunneling in September 2023, roughly 165m tunnel built so far
  • S-1073B (Eagle) on UG-01 – Started tunneling in mid-January 2024, roughly 30m tunnel built so far
  • S-1075B (Pelican) on UG-02 – Commissioned at Panagal Park’s Crossover (this post!)
  • S-1074B (Peacock) on UG-02 – passed FAT in April 2023; will be lowered next (CMRL is looking at an April 1 launch)

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