On Sunday, June 28th BBT SE organized an Open Tunnel Day at the construction site in Wolf, near Steinach am Brenner. On a lovely sunny day, over 2,800 people came to hear about the progress of the work on the biggest tunnel project in Europe and to find out other interesting things as well.
At the entrance to the access tunnel in Wolf, where the statue of Saint Barbara protects the miners and workers from the dangers of their profession, rev. Albert Moser celebrated a Holy mass at 10 AM. BBT SE CEO Prof. Konrad Bergmeister took the chance to thank the many inhabitants of the Wipptal taking part in the ceremony for the excellent cooperation with the local population. „A construction site this size can and must work in harmony with the surrounding environment, and that means with the population as well. Even if it is not always simple, we will continue to make every effort to keep any impact from the construction activities to a bare minimum."
Subsequently, there was a guided walking tour through the newly lined Padaster tunnel to the disposal site in the Padaster valley. Along the tunnel, BBT personnel offered information on the project but also many other details of daily life on a construction site and all the challenges it brings. For example, how the tunnel is built, in all its different sizes, what sort of rock can be found in the depths of the mountain and how it is even possible to aim in the correct direction when excavating a tunnel.
At the Padaster valley disposal site the visitors were informed that the concrete for the Padaster tunnel and for the Wolf lateral access tunnel is now produced using aggregates that are 100% derived from recycling the Bündner schist spoil resulting from the excavation. About 60,000 m³ of drainage gravel were also processed out of the tunnel spoil. These recycling measures have made it possible to avoid several thousand heavy lorry trips.
Besides this information, visitors also had a chance to see the enormous construction machines from up close and the children could try and see what it was like to drive such machines. Lots of play options for children, a refreshment tent and the music of the "Böhmische", part of the Steinach town band, rounded off the programme.