Two 115-tonne roadheaders recently broke through into the cavern of Brisbane’s future Boggo Road station two months ahead of schedule, marking another significant milestone for the transformational Cross River Rail project.
The mega machines excavated almost 900 metres of tunnel each, since launching from Woolloongabba at the start of the year.
The roadheaders finished carving Cross River Rail’s tunnels towards Boggo Road in September, having advanced about 30 metres a week through hard rock.
It marked a particularly impressive feat of engineering, with the roadheaders working as shallow as eight metres below ground at some points, including beneath live rail lines.
While the project’s massive Tunnel Boring Machines usually receive the most attention, our roadheaders are impressive pieces of machinery in their own right.
The machines and the crews who operate them are the unsung workhorses of the project, responsible for not only mining the tunnels from Woolloongabba to Boggo Road, but excavating the project’s station caverns as well.
Meanwhile, work on the future Boggo Road station itself has been progressing well.
This new underground station will see Boggo Road become South East Queensland’s second busiest transport interchange, with over 22,000 commuters using the new station each week day, by 2036.
The 27-metre-deep station box is now fully excavated and the walls for the station structure itself are being installed.
The site also boasts two of the world’s strongest tower cranes, each capable of lifting 330 tonnes each – the equivalent of about 47 African elephants.
Almost 3000 people are currently working across the project, including more than 200 workers in the tunnels between Woolloongabba and Boggo Road, and 360 at the Boggo Road site.
The Cross River Rail project is a 10.2-kilometre rail line from Dutton Park to Bowen Hills, which includes 5.9 kilometres of twin tunnels under the Brisbane River and Brisbane CBD.