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TBMs commence tunnelling on Sydney Metro West

A large Sydney Metro Tunnel Boring Machine

Works on the 24-kilometre Sydney Metro West line have reached a major milestone as the first two huge tunnel boring machines (TBMs) begin their journey.

The next stage of the city-shaping Sydney Metro project is well and truly underway with TBM Daphne already 150m into its 11km journey from The Bays to Sydney Olympic Park, and TBM Beatrice 45m into its journey on the parallel tunnel.

As is tunnelling tradition across the world, the Sydney Metro West TBMs are named after women to bring luck to the workers who look to Saint Barbara for protection.

TBM Daphne has been named in honour of pioneer for Paralympic sport Daphne Hilton. Daphne Hilton was one of the most successful Australian athletes of all time and a trailblazer for women in sport. Daphne competed in three Paralympic Games between 1960 and 1968, winning 14 medals across five different sports including athletics, swimming, archery, table tennis, and fencing.

TBM Daphne is named for Paralympian Daphne Hilton. Image courtesy of Sydney Metro.

TBM Beatrice’s namesake is iconic local newspaper seller Beatrice Bush who sold newspapers for more than 25 years from the traffic island at the intersection of Victoria Road and The Crescent in White Bay. It is estimated she sold five million papers between 1971 to 1996, passing away six days after she sold her last paper. Her life inspired songwriters, filmmakers, sculptors, and painters.

Along with TBM excavation, construction of the tunnels includes activities like the construction of cross passages and crossover caverns.

Construction of the twin metro tunnels from The Bays to Sydney Olympic Park is part of the Central Tunnelling Package awarded in July 2021 to the Acciona Ferrovial Joint Venture.

Sydney Metro West is expected to double the rail capacity between the Sydney and Parramatta CBDs once passenger services commence in 2030.

For more information about Sydney Metro West, click here.  


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