Construction work on the Albvorland Tunnel, which will be 8176 m long, officially began on 6 October 2017. Implenia has been commissioned by Deutsche Bahn to build the tunnel, a key section of the new 60 km long railway line between Stuttgart and Ulm. The first of the two EPB TBMs by Herrenknecht, known as Wanda, will carve its way through the rocks beneath the Albvorland region between the towns of Kirchheim unter Teck and Wendlingen. The second machine, called Sibylle, will start a little later; work on the two tunnels will progress in parallel for approximately 18 months.
The ceremony to mark the official start of construction of the railway project’s last major tunnel was attended by, among others, Ronald Pofalla, Member of Deutsche Bahn’s Management Board responsible for Infrastructure, Guido Wolf, Europe Minister for Baden-Württemberg, Norbert Barthle, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Transport, and Anton Affentranger, CEO of Implenia. Tunnel “Godmother” Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut, Minister of Economic Affairs for Baden-Württemberg, was also there to see work begin on the tunnel that has been named “Nicole” after her, during the construction stage.
In addition to the Albvorland Tunnel, Implenia is in charge of building the link to the Stuttgart-Tübingen line, the “Kleine Wendlinger Kurve”, and the freight train link, which includes two 170 m, single-track tunnels at the western portal of the Albvorland Tunnel in Wendlingen.
More than 60 % of the tunnel excavation works (38 km of altogether 61 km) on the new Wendlingen–Ulm rail line have been completed by now.