City Rail Link
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Jeffie starts her journey

JEFFIE STARTS HER JOURNEY

Jeffie – the micro tunnel boring machine installing a replacement stormwater main through Mt Eden – has started her 420m pipe-jack journey from Water St.

Tunnelling at a depth of about 17m, Jeffie is expected to arrive at her Nikau St reception shaft in late March.

The existing stormwater main lies in the path of the future CRL tunnels at Mt Eden, so must be diverted before work can begin on building the new station and twin underground tunnels in the area.

This stormwater work is what is known as City Rail Link's C6 contract to create a new alignment between Water and Ruru Streets . These realignment works are expected to continue until sometime in autumn. Shafts are being dug at Water and Ruru Streets. The tunnel will be completed in a single drive from Water to Ruru Streets. A third shaft at Mt Eden Rd will provide future access to the main via a manhole.

The machine

The tunneling is being done by a German-built Herrenknecht AVN machine. You can read about how it works here.

The machine was named Jeffie following a hugely popular CRL social naming contest. The most popular name was Jeff but traditionally such machines adopt a female name so Jeffie - a popular girls name in the early 1900s - was chosen.

Naming digging equipment after women is said to be a tradition that dates to the 1500s when miners prayed to to St. Barbara to keep them safe underground.

Saint Barbara is the patron saint of armourers, artillerymen, military engineers, miners and others who work with explosives because her legend associated her with lightning.

The contractors

March Bessac Joint Venture (MBJV) was awarded the contract to undertake the works. MBJV is a partnership between NZ-based company March Construction and specialist French-based tunnelling company Bessac.

The redeveloped station

Mount Eden Station will be enlarged and re-developed.

The bigger Mount Eden Station will cover both the existing Kingsland to Grafton line and new CRL Mount Eden to Karangahape Road line.

The station will look completely different from the present platforms which are accessible from a footbridge from Mt Eden Road.

The main access to the redeveloped station for the citybound platforms is at Ruru Street and a new Fenton Street to Ngahura Street overbridge (see map).

The present train station (shown below) is on Mt Eden Road near Eden Terrace/Symonds Street.

The new station design

The cultural design will extend from the forecourt, through the station and across the new connecting bridge between the platforms for the CRL and existing western line (officially known as the North Auckland line).

Basalt stone cladding will be used from floor to ceiling to represent the Mt Eden cone and crater and the pa terraces, with similar designs on the paved area. 

Also under consideration is a new water feature on the wall, seen on the right of the image using water from the nearby reopened natural spring.

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Below is a video of how the new station will look:

 

Station closure

The work on the station will at some stage require the present Mount Eden station to be closed. Contracts for the building of the stations and tunnels have yet to be awarded so it’s not yet possible to say exactly when this will happen and for how long and what travel arrangements Auckland Transport will recommend for those affected. Follow us on Facebook for updates.

Post CRL - Redevelopment in the area

Land acquired for the station’s redevelopment will provide the potential for more than 100,000sqm of residential and commercial investment as envisaged in the concept design below.