Work has started on construction of the first of the two rail tunnel boxes to be built under the heritage-listed Chief Post Office (CPO) building in lower Queen Street. It means construction of Auckland’s City Rail Link has taken another significant step.
Seventy cubic metres of reinforced concrete is being poured for the first base slab, or some of the floor, of the northbound tunnel below the old building.
CRLL Chief Executive Dr Sean Sweeney says this pour was an important moment for City Rail Link Ltd (CRLL) and its Contract 1 (C1) contractor Downer Soletanche Bachy JV.
“That time has been a challenging one for our C1 contract in lower Queen Street and Britomart.”
“Our teams have been working in some pretty demanding conditions, not only in reclaimed land immediately adjacent to a live railway station but also excavating below sea level with the Waitemata Harbour only a few metres away.”
“On top of that, some remarkable skill and innovation has been used to protect the CPO building so that we could get underneath it.”
Dr Sweeney says there is still a lot of work to be done before both the northbound and southbound tunnel boxes in this area are completed later this year.
Dr Sweeney says: “Once we’ve finished, it will be possible to walk the first section of the City Rail Link from Britomart station to beneath Albert Street as far as Wyndham Street.
As for the CPO building, we are on track to reinstate and return it as part of the Britomart station in late 2020.”