The railway system in the Swedish city of Gothenburg has reached maximum capacity. Delays and disruptions are common on a daily basis. The capacity for goods and transport traffic is limited and therefore constrains the regional development. To overcome these problems, a new metro line, the so-called West Link will be built. Teamed up with strong local partners, Amberg acts as a specialist for rock mechanics and concrete engineering.
The Swedish Transport Administration Trafikverket plans eight kilometers of new railway lines, six of them run in tunnels. By building tunnels instead of laying the tracks above ground, surfaces are released and can instead be used for housing and workplaces.
The geological conditions for building the tunnels are very challenging in the area. With its years of expertise in rock mechanics and concrete engineering, Amberg convinced the client of its abilities. The geology comprises an undulating hard rock layer with thick deposits of soft clay between the rock peaks.
Over its total length of six kilometres, the tunnel will run four kilometres through rock and two kilometres through clay. In the clay sections, a concrete tunnel will be built with cut-and-cover technique. The rock tunnel will be built using a drill-and-blast technique.
Amberg know-how for the new station caverns
In addition to the tunnel, three new underground stations are part of the West Link project. Two of them, Haga and Korsvägen lie in partly rock and partly clay areas and are part of Amberg's scope. Both of them have an impressive width of about 30 meters each. Thanks to its vast portfolio with large span caverns, Amberg has in-depth knowledge on how to design such infrastructures.
The physical appearance of the railway and the stations is based on the principle that passengers must perceive them as attractive and safe. They are to be aesthetically pleasing, have a clear individual identity and add value to the immediate environment.
Furthermore, passengers have to be able to find their way easily around the stations and between street level and platform. The stations are to serve as comfortable and efficient interchange points between different modes of transport.
"We are proud to be the part of the large design team tasked with tricky geomechanics and concrete engineering problems. Once again, we will push the boundaries, designing and building caverns wider than 20 meters in a low cover, urban environment," says Dr. Nedim Radončić, Head of the Austrian and Swedish Market at Amberg.
Amberg works in this ambitious project together with very experienced partners Tyréns, Sweco, Bergab and NGI. The West Link project will be finished by the year 2026.
Read about the West Link Project on the website of Trafikverket.