Track Laying Begins on Lines 16 and 17 of Grand Paris Express

A new milestone has been reached on the Grand Paris Express project, thanks to the completion of the first half of the Line 16 tunnel between Saint-Ouen and Aulnay.

This work, completed by four tunnel boring machines (TBMs), has enabled engineers to begin preparing sections of Lines 16 and 17 for future metro operation.

Assembly of two rails in the common tunnel of lines 16 and 17
Assembly of two rails in the common tunnel of lines 16 and 17

On 8 June teams from the TSO consortium began laying rails and sleepers on a common section of the two lines between Saint-Denis Pleyel station and the Finot structure.

This will be followed by the installation of the catenary, electrical cables, lighting, signage and ventilation.

Work is underway to install 850 metres of double tracks, as well as a crossover which will enable the trains to be turned around in the Finot structure.

This is necessary for them to be able to travel in the opposite direction, as the lines end at Saint-Denis Pleyel.

The Société du Grand Paris is looking to reduce the carbon footprint of this project by using different construction methods and new types of materials. This includes the use of low carbon rails on Line 16.

The steel for these rails was produced by Saarstahl via an electric arc furnace using recycled steel and scrap, rather than a coal-fired blast furnace. This process reduces carbon emissions by 60%.

installation of the rails linking the Finot to Saint-Denis Pleyel station is scheduled for completion in August.

Track laying will then continue between the Le Bourget RER and Le Blanc-Mesnil stations, as well as between the Canal well in Aubervilliers and the Saint-Denis Pleyel station.

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