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Construction of a deep shaft for Crossrail

McNamara, A. M., Roberts, T. O. L., Morrison, P. R. J. & Holmes, G. R. (2008). Construction of a deep shaft for Crossrail. Geotechnical Engineering, 161(6), pp. 299-309. doi: 10.1680/geng.2008.161.6.299


An 8·2 m diameter, 37·5 m deep shaft has been successfully constructed from within the basement of a new development, Moorhouse, near Moorgate in the City of London. Programme constraints led to the shaft being constructed after completion of the foundations, basements and most of the superstructure for the development. At its closest point the shaft is less than 2 m from the large-diameter piles that support Moorhouse, and the presence of these foundations placed tight constraints on acceptable ground movements associated with construction of the shaft. The depth of the shaft is such that it penetrates through stiff London Clay and is founded at the bottom of the Lambeth Group. The paper describes the contingency measures to deal with potentially difficult ground conditions, including the water-bearing layers of the Lambeth Group. The construction processes included a complex temporary works dewatering system around the shaft, with the option to carry out additional dewatering from within the shaft during excavation. Provision was also made for radial grouting to ‘restress’ the ground, to prevent long-term settlement of the Moorhouse piles, should the need arise. The success of the project was due, in no small part, to the detailed planning and consideration of contingency measures to deal with perceived risk.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: Copyright Thomas Telford (ICE Publishing)
Subjects: T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Engineering
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