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PORR consortium wins largest tunnelling project in Austrian history

A team led by Porr has won a contract worth almost €1bn to build what will be the largest tunnelling project in Austrian history. Porr will carry out the work with Hinteregger, and Italian partners Società Italiana per Condotte d’Acqua and Itinera.

Construction will begin in early summer on the €966m (£842m) design and build contract. It is for a section of the Brenner Base Tunnel, lot H51 Pfons-Brenner, with a length of around 18km.

Porr CEO Karl-Heinz Strauss said: “The scope of the project, the changeable geological conditions and the limited space constraints of the construction site all represent considerable challenges. On highly demanding, large-scale projects such as the ‘Green Line’ metro in Doha, we have proven that we are capable of mastering exceptionally complex tasks within the promised time and quality – and on budget. This certainly worked in our favour in the award process for the Brenner Base Tunnel.”

The main construction phase for lot H51 involves building two  tunnel tubes between Brenner and Pfons, around 9km of exploratory shafts, and the emergency stop and transfer point at St Jodok. The excavation of the exploratory shafts will be realised with the drill & blast method and secured with shotcrete. The entire lot will be supplied via a single access shaft. The two main, single-track tunnel tubes will mainly be driven with tunnel boring machines with an excavation diameter of 10.37m. This means that a stretch of up to 30 metres can be driven per day and per tunnel boring machine.

Facts and figures at a glance:  

Project name Lot BBT H51 Pfons-Brenner
Client Brenner Basistunnel Gesellschaft (BBT SE)
Consortium PORR Bau GmbH, G. Hinteregger & Söhne Baugesellschaft m.b.H., Società Italiana per Condotte d’Acqua S.p.A., Itinera S.p.A
Completion 74 months
Project type Design and build
Tender value approx. EUR 966m

2024 is the year being cited for completion of the project.