A tunnel borer has emerged from the deepest tunnel shaft of its kind in the southern hemisphere, marking a major milestone for one of Brisbane’s biggest sewer projects.

The $55 million investment involves building 4.25km of brand new sewer pipe from Wecker Road, Mansfield to Cadogan Street, Carindale.

Queensland Urban Utilities spokesperson, Michelle Cull, said the tunnel borer was craned out of a 48m deep shaft on the corner of Scrub Road and Ewer Street, Carindale in earlY April 2018.

“The whole project team was thrilled to see the borer break through after three months of tunnelling,” Ms Cull said.

“It has been on quite a journey, travelling around 700m from where it was launched on the corner of Pine Mountain and Scrub Roads.

“It was a delicate operation to slowly crane the 45 tonne machine out of an incredibly deep hole, alongside a busy road.”

The work site at Ewer St will now be temporarily shut down, until the tunnel borer makes its way back to this retrieval shaft from the other direction in about four months’ time. Trenchless technology is being used to minimise disruption to motorists and the community, however there have been some impacts around the access shafts.

“We’d really like to thank the impacted residents for their patience while we carry out this important work of building for the future,” Ms Cull said.

“Sewerage is a hidden service, but as projects like this demonstrates, a lot goes on behind the scenes after you flush.

“This new pipe will carry wastewater to the Gibson Island Sewage Treatment Plant and cater for future growth in south east Brisbane for at least the next 50 years.”

The project is expected to be completed by early 2019. 

Charlotte Pordage is Editor of Utility magazine, a position she has held since November 2018. She joined the team as an Associate Editor in October 2017, after sharpening her writing and editing skills across a range of print and digital publications. Charlotte graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London, in 2011 with joint honours in English and Latin. When she's not putting together Australia's only dedicated utility magazine, she can usually be found riding her horse or curled up with a good book.

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