White knuckles and euphoric screams as visitors to the Drievliet family park swoop through the air in a superfast rollercoaster. Right next to this, drivers will soon be shooting down the Victory Boogie Woogie Tunnel. The tunnel, which will connect the Ypenburg interchange (A4/A13) with the Centrumring inner ring road, is part of the biggest infrastructure project ever undertaken in The Hague: the Rotterdamsebaan road project.
The amount of rat-run traffic in the residential areas of Rijswijk and Voorburg has increased in recent years, largely due to long tailbacks on Utrechtsebaan. The new Rotterdamsebaan road is intended to relieve this arterial road and enhance liveability in the surrounding residential areas, as well as giving an economic boost to the Binckhorst neighbourhood.
The Rotterdamsebaan construction consortium consisting of BAM, Wayss & Freytag and VolkerWessels is responsible for the design, preparation and realisation. The team will also maintain the approximately 3.5-kilometre long link road for a period of 15 years. Various VolkerWessels companies are working towards the success of this project including Vialis, KWS, Volkerinfra Design, Volker Staal en Funderingen, Homij Technische Installaties and Aveco de Bondt.
The ambition is for Rotterdamsebaan to be an icon of sustainable infrastructure, both during construction and after completion. Filters in the tunnel will capture particulates. The tunnel buildings will be energy-neutral thanks to solar panels at the mouth of the tunnel, while green fuel will be used for transport and production. In addition two electric vehicles to transport the heavy concrete tunnel sections during the drilling of the tunnel have been especially built for the project. But there is more to sustainability than just being environmentally friendly: the intention is for the design and careful incorporation in the landscape to ensure that Rotterdamsebaan is still considered an attractive development decades from now.
Pumps to eliminate rain and extinguishing water; public address systems, CCTV systems and escape routes; lighting, ventilation and traffic control systems: more than 50 different systems are planned to guarantee safety in the Victory Boogie Woogie Tunnel. “The tunnel will simply not open before all these systems are demonstrably working safely,” stresses Leo Speksnijder, Technical Manager for the Rotterdamsebaan consortium. A team of over 40 people is working on preparing the systems. “While many systems are standardised no two tunnels are the same and so you have to engineer largely from scratch for each new tunnel,” explains Leo. “Take sound: if an announcement is made, you have to be able to hear it. A tunnel’s acoustics have a major bearing on the design of the PA system.”
Working in tunnel technology