Excavation starts for one of the biggest BBT section

Sill Gorge – Pfons sectionThe Austrian Federal Minister Leonore Gewessler and Pat Cox, European Coordinator for the Scandinavian Mediterranean Corridor of the TEN-T corridor, launched the excavation work of H41 Sill Gorge – Pfons section one of the biggest sections of the Brenner Base Tunnel (BBT).

The ceremony took place in Ahrental, near Innsbruck and was also attended by numerous stakeholders of the BBT project, including the governor of Land Tyrol Günther Platter, the governor of the Autonomous Province of Bolzano Arno Kompatscher, the President of the Province of Verona Manuel Scalzotto, the CEO of ÖBB Infrastruktur AG Judith Engel and the Italian member of the Board of Management of BBT SE Gilberto Cardola.

“The workers, who are digging in the mountains of lot H41, will contribute to the construction of this future perspective. This is a significant engineering feat and I am very proud, as tunnel patroness, to be able to wish anyone who contributes to this project courage and luck,” Leonore Gewessler said.

Since mid-January 2022, the bidding consortium H41 Sillschlucht – Pfons, which consists of the companies Implenia Österreich, Implenia Schweiz, Webuild and csc costruzioni has been carrying out the works on this lot. EUR 651 million is the total value of the bidding offered by the consortium with a 50% stake each between Implenia and Webuild and its Swiss subsidiary CSC Costruzioni.

“This construction lot is of particular importance for the overall project, as from here large sections of the main tunnel southwards will be excavated using a TBM. Thus, today’s is another important step for the realisation of the Brenner Base Tunnel,” the CEO of BBT Gilberto Cardola said.

In total, 22.5 km of main tunnel tubes and 38 cross passages with a total length of 2.3 km will be excavated in this construction lot. In order to ensure the fastest progress possible in the whole project, the Lot H41 Sill Gorge – Pfons section was extended southwards by 3 km of main tunnel tubes, where it meets construction lot H53 Pfons – Brenner section. The entire excavation of the exploratory tunnel in H41 has already been completed in a previous lot, so the geological conditions in this stretch are very well known.

The Gola del Sill-Pfons lot, which will create up to 400 direct jobs and more than 1,000 for third parties, involves the construction of the railway from Gola del Sill near the city of Innsbruck in the north to the town of Pfons further south. It also involves the creation of an underground emergency stop at Innsbruck, access tunnels, exploratory tunnels and parts of other secondary tunnels. There will also be the construction of a bridge over the Brennero A13 highway.

The works are expected to last until summer of 2028.

The Brenner Base Tunnel is a 64 km rail line linking Austria and Italy through a 230 km of tunnel system 151 of which is currently excavated. When completed the BBT will provide a 40-minute travel time from Innsbruck to Bolzano.

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