Derbyshire-based Stanton Precast has secured a contract from the UK’s HS2 for the construction of three green tunnels for the high-speed rail project.
Spanning around 6.43km, the tunnels will be built in sections at the Ilkeston factory.
They will then be taken to the site and assembled at three places in rural Northamptonshire and Buckinghamshire.
With assembly scheduled to commence on site early next year, the first 2.5km green tunnel will pass through the village of Chipping Warden in Northamptonshire.
Stanton will produce more than 5,020 individual tunnel segments for the Chipping Warden tunnel.
This will be executed under the contract awarded by EKFB, HS2’s main works contractor that comprises a team of Eiffage, Kier, Ferrovial and BAM Nuttall.
They will be joined by specialist engineers Matière who will be responsible for the deployment of the tunnel segments.
To manage the new work, new production sheds, casting and storage zones are also being built at the factory.
For the delivery of three green tunnels, Stanton will produce over 13,290 tunnel segments in total.
EKFB director Peter Bimson said: “The Chipping Warden ‘Green Tunnel’ is a demonstrable feat. It combines a myriad of innovative techniques, from promoting safety by taking the construction process off-site to delivering an end-product that will benefit the surrounding environment.
“This off-site manufacturing is the result of the collaboration between some exceptional teams, using international engineering expertise.”
The tunnel will feature a double arch and have two distinct segments for southbound and northbound trains.
Five different concrete precast portions will be placed together for the formation of the double arch, which will include one central pier, two side walls and two roof slabs.
The Chipping Warden tunnel is projected to be completed in 2024.
Subsequently, two similar structures will be built at Wendover in Buckinghamshire and Greatworth in Northamptonshire.
All three tunnels will encompass ‘porous portals’ at both ends to minimise the noise of trains exiting the tunnel.
In October this year, HS2 shortlisted bidders to work as the Phase IIa Design and Delivery Partner (DDP) for the new section of the country’s high-speed rail network.