CHENNAI:Completing yet another milestone, the Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) has achieved a successful breakthrough of the tunnel between Washermanpet and Chennai Central. While work on one tunnel was completed last November, Friday saw the huge Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) bringing down the high wall of the second tunnel at Central.
CMRL officials said the tunnelling work on the 3.4 km long stretch took close to three years, as the soil conditions were challenging – in some areas loose and in some others hard rock. The track laying work has already started on the Washermanpet- Central stretch and is scheduled to be completed in the next three months.
The Chennai Metro system (Phase 1) consists of lines along two corridors covering a length of 45.1 km, with one line between Chennai Central and St Thomas Mount (22 km) and another between Washermanpet and Chennai Airport (23.1 km). “With Friday’s development, tunnelling work on major chunk of the underground network has been completed with only a 2.4 km stretch between AG-DMS and Thousand Lights remaining,” a senior official said.
Meanwhile, work is progressing on the Chennai Central metro station. The two lines will converge at this station facilitating cross over to either of the two. The station is situated 28 metres underground, and will be the biggest underground Metro station at 390 metres long and 33 metres wide. The station will have five entry and exit points, facilitating access for commuters from Raja Mutthiah road (Sydenham Road), Chennai Central, Park Station, Parktown MRTS station and Moore Market Complex. Explaining why the station is so deep, the official said, “There are separate levels for the two lines underground. Also, there will be a parallel platform for trains to be parked since Chennai Central is termination point for one line.”