The Shapoorji Pallonji Group Company has transformed itself into a complete metro solutions provider for urban infrastructure.
By the time the construction work gets over in a couple of years´ time, Chennai will be having one of India´s biggest underground metro stations, the Chennai Central Metro station. The Chennai Metro Rail Project comprises two corridors totalling 45.1 kms. It consists of 19 underground stations and 13 elevated stations covering most important routes of the city. The Afcons-Transtonnelstroy joint venture is constructing nine underground metro stations (Package 1 & V) through the most geologically challenging areas of the city.
¨In Chennai Metro Rail Project-Phase I, Afcons is carrying out underground tunnelling as well as underground station works in two different stretches. The conditions are challenging since the ground water table is very high and the upper layers consist of sand and bottom layers are made of hard rock. That is proving to be a challenge for them to move the TBMs in these mixed geological conditions. But they (Afcons) are very professional, which is enabling them to deliver quality work on time,¨ a Chennai Metro Rail official said.
Afcons has steadily grown over decades to leave a dominant footprint on the Indian metro road map. It entered the field of tunnelling in the late 80´s by carrying out tunnelling work for India´s first metro railway project in Kolkata.
A special blade shield technique was used for the construction of tunnel in soft soil. The complete blade shield was designed and fabricated by Afcons in-house. Over two decades since, and with the ever-growing need of an under¡ground rapid transit system, Afcons has transformed into a complete metro solutions provider for urban infrastructure. In national capital, New Delhi, Afcons has worked extensively for Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Limited (DMRC). It is still working for DMRC as metro continues to expand in the city.
Afcons is the first Indian contractor to independently build an underground metro station at Barakhamba, New Delhi. The station along with the adjoining tunnel works was completed in a record time of 22 months.
The company is also poised to construct the first ever metro link (for Kolkata Metro Rail Corporation Limited) that will go under river Ganges in Kolkata. It is a one-of-a-kind metro project that the whole country is following with a bated breath. Today, Afcons can build equipment, tools and methods to suit customer needs and adapt to changing market situations. The organisation´s modern equipment set-up plays a vital role in enhancing its engineering skills.
¨We are proud owners of seven tunnel boring machines (TBMs) which can take up any challenge. The TBMs can take on soft soil; it can take up mix phase, hard rock as well as two of our TBMs are designed to navigate to the deepest sections designed specifically for the Kolkata Metro Project to bore beneath the river belt. With our asset base and inventory, we are confident that we can take on any underground metro project in the world,¨ said V Manivannan, EVP- Construction Plant & Equipment, Afcons.
Metros have become lifelines in urban spaces all across the world. With minimal carbon emission and fuel efficiency, it is undoubtedly the answer to mass commuter problems in cities.
Afcons is working extensively in metro infrastructure projects in India. It has proved to be a partner of choice and aspires to be the one-stop metro solutions provider for urban infrastructure.