Network Rail has called on the industry to help it come up with faster and more effective ways to repair and re-line its 700 tunnels across the country.

Most of the rail infrastructure firm’s 335km of tunnels were constructed as brick lined structures in the Victorian era and are proving costly and time-consuming to upkeep.

Network Rail said that present labour intensive methods requiring long blockades were no longer sustainable in the face of the growing backlog of repairs and the need to reduce track access and increasing train operations.

Major enhancement projects that increase gauge or upgrade electrification in tunnels are also piling up pressure to develop new approaches and technologies.

Network Rail is now to carry out an in depth feasibility study to understand how significant improvements can be achieved.

Source: Construction Enquirer

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