Cross River Rail station excavation breaks record depth

A station box has been excavated at a record-breaking depth of 50 metres beneath Brisbane, as part of the Cross River Rail project.

Acting Premier and State Development Minister Steven Miles said the station box for the new Cross River Rail underground station on Albert Street was about 50 metres deep at its lowest point – almost double the previous record of 26 metres set during Queen’s Wharf construction.

“This milestone for Cross River Rail is yet another example of the sheer scale of this project,” Miles said.

“To give an idea of the size, if this was an underground carpark, it would be about 15 levels deep, with excavation generating enough spoil to fill 19 Olympic-sized swimming pools.

“The Myer Centre carpark just up the road has a depth of 22 metres, and this is over double that.

“It is a credit to the over 250 workers on site who achieved this despite challenging engineering conditions in between high-rise buildings in the middle of a bustling CBD.”

Miles said the focus on site would now shift towards permanent building works for the new station.

“The end of excavation means the most intensive period of work on site is now complete, and we thank those living nearby for their patience and understanding while the work took place,” he said.

“As the project progresses this year, we’ll start to see the stations themselves take shape here at Albert Street, but also at our other underground station sites and in the tunnels themselves.

“This month we saw some of the first rail delivered to the Gabba site, which will soon be running down the tunnels.

“The Cross River Rail project has great momentum, and we continue to smash milestone after milestone to the benefit of the Queensland economy.”

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said that the station box formed only one half of the total station area being excavated.

“While excavation of the 50-metre-deep station box cavern has been completed, we continue to work away on the adjoining 290-metre-long station cavern,” Bailey said.

“The Albert Street station will have entrances at both ends, dramatically improving connectivity to not only Botanic Gardens, QUT Gardens Point campus and the new and Queen’s Wharf Brisbane development but also Elizabeth St and Queen Street Mall.

“It’s hard to grasp just how big these stations will be, but just imagine some of Brisbane’s tallest skyscrapers laying horizontally underground.

“With over 67,000 people expected to use the Albert Street station each weekday by 2036, these long platforms are definitely needed.”

Bailey stressed the importance of the new Albert Street station, especially for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“We know how important Cross River Rail was in Queensland’s winning Olympic bid and the crucial role it will play in unlocking the rail network bottleneck over the Brisbane River,” he said.

Construction of the Albert St station building is expected to be completed in late-2023.

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