TAP Starts Boring 1.5 km Micro Tunnel in Skrapar
Albanian Daily News
Published February 15, 2018
The Trans Adriatic Pipeline, TAP, organized in Çorovoda a ceremonial event to mark the start of works for the 1.5 kilometers micro-tunnel, that will link the east side with the west side of the Albanian segment of the pipeline.
The ceremony held at the construction site, where the boring of the micro-tunnel will commence, was attended by the Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Energy, Enis Aliko, Skrapari Mayor, Nesim Spahiu, TAP Project Manager for Albania, Karl Roberts, SpiecapagProject Manager,Guillaume Batut, BessacProject Manager for Çorovodamicro-tunnels, Dylan Mognol, and experts of the energy sector in the country.
Deputy Minister of Infrastructure and Energy, Enis Aliko, stressed the importance of the TAP project for the Albanian economy during the construction phase and when the pipeline becomes operational:"It is the first time that this kind of operations and techniquesare executed in Albania, part of an important project such as TAP.Moreover, I would like to congratulate TAP about the safety standards applied during the construction of the pipeline."
TAP Project Manager for Albania, Karl Roberts stated: "TAP is a key project that underlines the Albanian's strategic role as part of the Southern Gas Corridor, enabling the future gasification Albanian and the Western Balkans and bringing new sources of gas to Europe. The micro-tunnel will be constructed using state-of-art technology with minimal human intervention, making it the safest method with minimal impact on the environment and safest way."
In his welcoming speech, Guillaume Batut, said: "So far, with the support of the Albanian Government and all the Municipalities along TAP route we have managed to overcome all the difficulties of this project. I have no doubt that with the same support TAP, Spiecapag and Bessac will overcome this new challenge and will manage to cross the mountain with the micro-tunnel."
Mayor of Skrapari, Nesim Spahiu, mentioned the importance of TAP investments for Skrapari region: "TAP is one of the most important investments for Albanian and obviously for Skrapari region. It has an enormous impact, especially in road infrastructure, employment and social and environmental investments. Skrapari Municipality has a very good relationship with TAP and TAP's contractors in finding positive solutions for the community of this area."
Skrapar's landscape poses many challenges to the pipeline construction, as a result of its numerous fractures, height, and geological composition. Through the micro-tunnel will be avoided routing the pipeline in the OsumiRiver and affecting the new bypass road. It presents the safest and most environmentally friendly option to pass this difficult segment.
The micro-tunnel will be composed of the 560-meter East tunnel and the 600-meter West tunnel and it will have a 1.8 meter internal diameter. The construction works for the micro-tunnel are expected to take approximately 4 months and about 50 more new work places are expected to be generated for local staff.
The tunnel boring industry tradition requires that the tunnel boring machine to be used is given a name. Thus, TAP has decided that the tunnel boring machine to be used for the Çorovoda micro-tunnel will be named "Karl Gega", in honor of one of the most renowned infrastructure and transport engineers in Europe.