Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 26 August 2019

Dubai to get massive drill for Expo 2020 flood prevention tunnel project

A team from Dubai Municipality observed drilling machine that will help tackle the city's flooding problem caused by heavy rain

Dubai Municipality has embarked on a fact-finding mission to China to learn about a drilling machine that will be used in a massive deep tunnel drainage project in Dubai.

The project is set to protect a huge section of the city from flood threats in time for the hosting of Expo 2020.

The team, led by municipality director general, Dawood Al Hajiri, took a closer look at the drilling machine that will be used for the deep tunnel storm water system project, which will serve the expanded Al Maktoum International Airport, the Expo 2020 area and nearby urban areas, during their visit to the city of Guangzhou.

The drilling machines, which will be the largest used in the region, are due to arrive on site in Dubai this October ahead of excavation work starting in December.

Dubai Municipality's Dawood Al Hajiri and team in Guangzhou. Courtesy Dubai Municipality
Dubai Municipality's Dawood Al Hajiri and team in Guangzhou. Courtesy Dubai Municipality

The project will cover 490 sq km, which is almost 40 per cent of the urban area of Dubai.

Mr Al Hajiri and the accompanying delegation reviewed the quality standards in the factory in Guangzhou and the production efficiency procedures as well as the technical specifications of the drilling machines.

The project was launched in October last year and is due to be completed by September 2020, with Dubai Municipality racing to complete the project before the World Fair, which will run from October of that year until the following April.

“The drilling will be done in two types of soil; the weak rocky soil and clay soil with an average depth of 42 metres,” said Mr Al Hajiri.

“The tunnel, with a diameter of 10 metres, will consist of eight concrete segments per ring, each 35 cm thick. There will be two segment types – 1.6m and 2m wide – and each piece will weigh seven tons. These pieces will be fixed by iron pegs and sealed with epoxy.”


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Dubai's tunnel project to start next year


Dubai will be purchasing two large tunnel boring machines (TBM) for the project.

TBM 1 will begin from the start of the seventh intersection on Sheikh Zayed Road for a distance of 2.4 km towards the sea up to the location of the main pumping station, then it will be dismantled and reassembled to move from the seventh intersection until the eighth intersection along 1.7 km.

The second TBM drilling machine will start work from the Expo intersection on Jebel Ali - Al Habab Street for a distance of 5 km and will continue until the eighth intersection on Sheikh Zayed Road.

Mr Al Hajiri said the manufacturing and installation of one device will take 364,000 man-hours. He said the daily energy consumption of the first device will be 64 megawatts.

The second device will have a daily electricity consumption of 58.738 megawatts.

Updated: July 17, 2018 06:34 PM