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Renzo Tonin & Associates provide state-of-the-art noise and vibration modelling for Sydney’s newest

Renzo Tonin & Associates is thrilled to be working on the NSW Government’s Sydney Metro Northwest project, formerly known as the North West Rail Link.

NWRL, tunnel boring machine

Sydney Metro is Australia’s largest public transport project intended to deliver more trains and faster services across the city.

There are three major contracts for the construction and operation of Sydney Metro:

  • TSC - Tunnels and Station Civil

  • OTS - Operations, Trains and Systems

  • SVC - Surface and Viaduct Civil

NWRL, tunnel boring machine

Renzo Tonin & Associates was brought on board to manage the noise and vibration for both the TSC and OTS contracts. For the TSC contract, we were appointed by the joint venture between Thiess, John Holland and Dragados following their successful tender bid. Our client was awarded the contract in June 2013.

The project involves the construction of 15-kilometre twin railway tunnels between Epping and Bella Vista in Sydney’s north-west, along with excavation and civil works for five new stations and two service facility shafts. Renzo Tonin & Associates is responsible for assessing and managing noise and vibration impacts associated with construction of the tunnels (TSC contract).

North West Rail Link (NWRL)

Managing construction phase noise and vibration for such a large project requires a high degree of skill. When there are residential properties so close to large and new transport corridors, there are a lot of things to take into consideration: from how noisy the area is already, to what sort of road access there is, to project deadlines that must be met.

In order to fulfil our brief, we developed unique modelling tools for this project, surpassing the requirements of any other construction project we have ever been involved with.

Drawing on the expertise of our talented engineers, we developed a specialised, detailed modelling process so our client could accurately pinpoint the project activities that were likely to involve noise and vibration impacts and tailor the mitigation design for vibration, ground-borne and airborne noise. In turn, this allowed our designers to choose the best ways of minimising these impacts, whether through better design of the actual construction sites, or managing the flow of works in the area.

For some areas, construction work was required around the clock to ensure timely delivery of the project. We were able to meet the client’s brief to provide expert advice to ensure the works could be completed to a high standard in a cost-effective way, with the least possible impacts on the community.

TSC construction work began in October 2013. As of June 2015, the excavation and civil works for the five new stations (Cherrybrook, Castle Hill, Showground, Norwest and Bella Vista) were almost finished. About 45 per cent of the overall tunnelling excavation had also been completed at that date.

Our involvement included all of the seven sites in the project, at Bella Vista, Castle Hill, Cherrybrook, Kellyville, Norwest, Rouse Hill, and Showground.

In terms of the OTS contract, we were appointed by the joint venture between John Holland, Leighton Contractors, MTR and UGL Rail Services to assess and design all acoustic, noise and vibration aspects of the operational phase of the project.

A particularly exciting part of the project for our team is the acoustical design of eight new rail stations and the state-of-the-art Rapid Transit Rail Facility at Rouse Hill in Sydney. Renzo Tonin & Associates has been working closely with the design team as the detailed design of the stations and rail facility, the track system and even the design of the train. We’re looking forward to using this key Sydney transport infrastructure in the future!

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