First Breakthrough of Liantang Tunnel Boring Machine in Hong Kong

4 minutes of reading

The Liantang tunnelling project entered a new chapter on 1st March with the breakthrough of the southbound tube’s Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) section by Hong Kong’s largest dual-mode Earth Pressure Balanced (EPB) TBM. A milestone in this major project for Chinese regional planning.

Tunnel de Liantang ©Patrick Leung

Tunnel de Liantang ©DR

The Liantang / Heung Yuen Wai (LTHYW) border control point (BCP) project is one of the major projects of co-operation among Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau and will be the seventh land-based crossing between Hong Kong and Shenzhen. The new BCP will significantly reduce the regional travelling time between Hong Kong and Guangdong, Fujian and Jiangxi provinces while the connecting road will improve significantly the local road network in North District.

The Liantang tunnel: great premieres in Hong Kong

Around 4.8 kilometres in length, the Lung Shan Tunnel will be the longest twin-tube road tunnel in Hong Kong upon completion. The tunnel boring works for the southbound tube commenced in November 2015 and lasted 16 months. A number of engineering techniques were adopted for the first time in Hong Kong, including the adoption of Hong Kong’s largest EPB TBM with a diameter of 14.1 metres, to tackle the challenges of excavating the geological area with multiple faults and mixed ground conditions.

Tunnelier de Liantang ©DR

Moreover, Dragages Hong Kong equipped the TBM with in-house state-of-the-art innovations, namely Mobydic, Telemach’ and Roby 850, for real-time cutter disc wear measurement; automatic replacement of worn cutter discs and semi-automatic drilling, reducing the need for manual works, thereby enhancing the safety and efficiency of works substantially.

Tunnel de Liantang ©Patrick Leung

An operation praised by Nicolas Borit, Chairman of Dragages Hong Kong: “We are doing something unprecedented here. I know that my Dragages people have been working round the clock since the beginning of the project. With a very strong team spirit and persistency, they bring us here today.”