Jason Edberg was recently asked to speak at the Rapid Excavation and Tunneling Conference in New Orleans. The organizers were interested in having Edberg explain the unique construction aspects of the Black River Tunnel: Phase 1 Project, a 5,600-foot long, 23-foot diameter rock tunnel located in Lorain, OH, which is intended to reduce sanitary sewer overflows to the Black River and Lake Erie. The City of Lorain (City) is located in north central Ohio on the south shore of Lake Erie, approximately 25 miles west of Cleveland and 74 miles east of Toledo.
The City chose to build a large diameter storage tunnel and pump station to meet their requirements to reduce sanitary sewer overflows to the nearby Black River. NTH was retained by the City’s prime consultant, Malcolm Pirnie, Inc. (now the water division of ARCADIS), to perform a geotechnical investigation, develop design and construction bid documents for the tunnel and shaft liner systems and ultimately provide oversight assistance during the
construction phase of the project.
Edberg's talk discussed the construction challenges and successes during tunnel excavation and installation of the primary tunnel liner systems, and portions of the secondary liner system. He also compared the shaft construction techniques that were utilized for each of the two shafts, highlighting advantages and drawbacks based on experience during construction.
Images from the Black Tunnel project and from the RETC event are below.