Technology TBM

Ejpovice Railway TunnelsConstruction Description
The construction entitled “Rokycany – Pilsen Railway Line Modernization” is part of domestic Railway Transit Corridor III – Western Section. The construction complies with Government Regulation 885 of 13 July 2005, and also fits in well with the concept for Trans-European Transport Networks according to the decision of the European Commission. It is designed in compliance with the interoperability requirements for the European railway networks. The preparatory documentation and construction design were produced by the joint-stock company SUDOP PRAHA a.s.

Anticipated Realization: 2013 - 2016

Construction Description: The construction addresses the modernization of the railway line running from Rokycany as far as the Ejpovice station, mainly following the existing railway bed. Between the Ejpovice and Plzeň Doubravka stations, the design calls for the relocation of the railway line completely outside the existing route, with the railway track passing the Chrást u Plzně station. The relocated railway line keeps to the prospective route of a high-speed rail line through new land, and through tunnels running under the Homolka and Chlum hill formations. The length of the two single-track tunnels running from the eastern to western portal is 4,150 m. The length of the railway line will thus be shortened by approximately 6,100 m. From the Plzeň Doubravka station to Pilsen Main Railway Station, the existing railway track route is used. The technical parameters for the modernized railway line were selected in light of the future use of the tunnel section for the high-speed rail line. The connection of the corridor track in the direction of the Chrást u Plzně station (further to Radnice) will be preserved as a single-track line, with a branch to run from the newly built Ejpovice railway station.

The construction primarily aims to attain higher technical parameters for the railway corridor track, including reduced running times of trains and increased safety of railway traffic operations. At the same time, passenger comfort will be improved. The construction will allow the desired spatial passability to be achieved for rail cars in the D4 UIC track loading class and UIC – GC loading gauge, as well as the required carrying capacity of the tracks by means of upgrading the existing interlocking equipment and increasing the maximum line speed up to 160 km/h. The speed of up to 200 km/h is ultimately projected from the point of planned connection of the high-speed rail line to the conventional track as far as the western portal of the tunnel, which represents a section of track that is approximately 4 km in length.

Through the designed horizontal and vertical alignment of the railway track and the resulting structural modifications, it was possible to achieve a line speed of 120 km/h in the section of Rokycany – Ejpovice, and a line speed of 160 km/h on the relocated track from Ejpovice for classic rail cars, and a speed of 160 km/h for tilting trains through the entire section. On the section of track before entering the Pilsen railway junction, the line speed will decrease in connection with the transition to a speed of 80 km/h, which is considered the minimum for transit through the Pilsen railway junction after the modernization thereof. At present, the speed is limited to 20 km/h at the entrance to the railway junction.

The primary objective of the corridor structures on the railway line from Prague to Pilsen is to achieve a running time shorter than one hour from Prague Main Railway Station to Pilsen Main Railway Station and vice versa. As compared with the existing situation in the section of Rokycany – Pilsen, it is expected to achieve a time-saving of approximately 9 minutes for express trains and regional fast trains.

The key issue lies in the construction of two single-track tunnels connected to one another by corridors. Within the construction project, new bridges and culverts will also be built, or existing bridges and culverts will be reconstructed.

Passenger comfort will be improved, in particular, by the construction of new platforms with the platform edge being at a height of 550 mm above the top of the rail. The platforms will be wheelchair accessible and will have lanes designed for the visually impaired. The railway stations will be equipped with new lighting systems and passenger information systems.

To ensure the continuity and safety of railway traffic operations, new station and trackside signalling equipment will be installed that can be controlled remotely, and a corresponding telecommunications and transmission system will be constructed. Traffic operation is expected to be controlled by the Rokycany railway station dispatcher, and in future, from the Dispatch Centre in Prague.

Special attention was paid to ensuring traffic operation in the tunnel. The design of the tunnel technological equipment and the fire engineering design comply with all requirements set forth in our standards and regulations, including the TSI.

The construction project also includes the reconstruction of existing overhead lines, as well as the construction of new overhead lines, the reconstruction of railway station lighting systems, and the construction of electric heating systems for switches at selected rail switch locations, including related heavy-current dispatcher control equipment.

Moreover, the construction project also comprises the construction of noise protection walls, designed according to the Noise Study, as well as the potential implementation of other noise protection measures.

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