|The final stage of tunnelling of the Chennai Metro Rail project on Anna Salai has been delayed and is likely to be completed only by mid-December.|
Earlier, officials had said that the work would be completed by October.
According to sources, the tunnel boring machine (TBM) deployed on the stretch of Anna Salai from Thousand Lights to AG-DMS will take more time to complete its work.
Two TBMs started tunnelling the entire stretch of Anna Salai from Government Estate a few years ago. In October, the first TBM reached AG-DMS.
“We are trying to complete the work as soon as we can, but it will take another month. We are trying to be very careful while tunnelling on this stretch as the soil conditions are pretty challenging,” an official said.
This is the only stretch of Phase I where work is pending. Of the 45 km of Phase I, tunnelling has been carried out for 24 km. Tunnelling has also been completed for the phase I extension project from Washermanpet to Wimco Nagar.
“After the second TBM reaches AG-DMS, laying of concrete for starting track work will begin, as will the work to construct cross passages,” an official said.
Tunnelling along Anna Salai ran into various problems and came to a halt when Russian firm Mosmetrostroy abandoned the project and its partner Gammon India’s contract was terminated. Subsequently, new tenders had to be called for and the contract was awarded to Afcons Insfrastructure Limited.