Tunnel boring machine Urja nears the end of its work

A file photo of tunnel boring machine Urja when it began its work at Cantonment last year.   | Photo Credit: SUDHAKARA JAIN


In July 2020, when Bengaluru was coming to terms with the pandemic, the tunnel boring machine (TBM), Urja, started its underground journey from Cantonment. After more than a year, it has almost completed tunnelling through the 850 metre stretch and will achieve a breakthrough at Shivajinagar in three to four days.

Urja, will be the first TBM to achieve a breakthrough on Namma Metro’s Pink Line from Kalenga Agrahara to Nagawara (21kms). The machine is just 10-12 metres away from the breakthrough point.

Anjum Parwez, the managing director of Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL), told The Hindu that the TBM achieving a breakthrough is an important development in tunnel work under way for Phase II of the Namma Metro. “Our engineers have told me that the TBM is progressing well and will come out at Shivajinagar metro station within a few days.”

Urja is around 102 metres long and costs ₹70 crore. In the same direction, another machine, Vindhya, is building a parallel tunnel, just 70 to 100 meters away from Urja.

For the underground section on the Pink Line, BMRCL has to tunnel nearly 14 kms from Dairy Circle to Nagawara. To carry out this work, nine TBMs will be deployed. “Seven machines are already on the job,” said BMRCL Chief PRO B.L. Yeshwanth Chavan.



Construction of tunnels is a challenging job as machines burrow under densely populated areas and hundreds of buildings located on the surface. In August, due to tunnel work, slurry had gushed inside houses located opposite Government V.K.O. School. BMRCL had to evacuate the residents from the affected buildings.

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Printable version | Oct 19, 2021 3:47:06 PM |

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