Product Supply Tunnel Refurbishment, Imperial Oil, Sarnia - 2010 - ongoing

Imperial Oil Tunnel


At Imperial Oil’s refinery, an aging combined steel liner plate and extended CSP tunnel under a city arterial roadway was corroding to the point that its structural integrity was a concern. Rebuilding the tunnel and rerouting the 45 pipes carrying various products and steam would have been a major undertaking that wasn’t in Imperial Oil’s plans.

Corroded Tunnel Liner

The decision was made to try to install a structural lining without disturbing the pipes. This was

The decision was made to try to install a structural lining without disturbing the pipes. This was complicated by there being very little clearance between some of the pipes and the corroding liner and the tunnel liner plate and CSP being different diameters. A laser scan of the tunnel interior was carried out to determine whether any liner could be physically installed. It was determined that two different sized tunnel liner plate segments could be installed around the pipes.

Imperial Oil Tunnel


This was not easy work trying to fit and bolt the steel segments together in behind the pipes. It

was very hot in the tunnel and the safety gear required for the confined space safety protocol

was also an impediment. After the arduous installation of the interior liner, the annular space was grouted to lock the structures together. The worst 2 sections of the tunnel were lined in 2010 with several more sections planned in the near future.

Corroded Tunnel Liner


Inspecting the Tunnel


Library of Parliament Basement Rock Excavation, Public Works Canada, Ottawa – 2002

Library of Parliament Shaft Location


The most historic building in Canada, located adjacent to Centre Block, was founded at ground level and not connected to Parliament Hill services. As part of a complete renovation it was decided to construct a basement under the building for additional archive storage and

mechanical equipment.

Library of Parliament Enclosure


This involved removing 5,000 m³ of limestone from beneath the building all the while supporting it. A shaft had to be sunk directly behind Centre Block from which a tunnel was dug under the Library. 

Mucking via Tunnel Under the Library


If that wasn’t enough of a challenge, the rock removal had to be completed with minimal vibration which precluded the normal blasting. Every low-vibration rock removal technique that existed was tried before a solution was found that led to the successful completion of the project.

Excavating Shaft for Tunnel Under Library


Excavating Under the Library of Parliament


Billy Bishop Toronto City Island Airport Pedestrian Tunnel, 2012-2014

Arch Tunnel Mined in Rock


Access for passengers to the increasingly busy Toronto Island Airport was by ferry across the 200 m wide Western Gap of Toronto Harbour. The challenge was to construct the largest diameter tunnel ever attempted in Toronto shale with minimal rock cover under the channel bottom. 


Waterproofing and Reinforcing Steel


This was further complicated by undisclosed channel blasting done by the St. Lawrence

Seaway in the 1950’s and piling installed during an aborted 1930’s tunnel attempt that damaged the rock.Large shafts were constructed on both the mainland and the Island using secant piles to support the wet sand overburden. The secant piles were anchored into the shale.

Arch Tunnels Completed.


Working areas were extremely small to accommodate airport operations on both sides of the channel. The design-build solution was to mine 7 interlocking 2 m diameter tunnels across the channel and fill them with concrete to form an arch. The main tunnel excavation was then carried out under the supporting arch with breakthrough to Toronto Island being achieved in August 2013. A concrete lining was poured to complete the civil work.

Excavating Main Tunnel


Pouring Concrete Arch


Completed Poured Arch


Sanitary Trunk Sewer by Microtunnelling, Seaton Developments, Pickering - 2017-2018

900mm MTBM Operation


The rapidly developing area of Seaton in north Pickering required a fast-track sanitary trunk

sewer to service the housing development that were already under construction. 

4.3m ID Steel Liner Shaft - Open Cut


This required a 24 hour a day, 6 days a week (sometimes 7) operation to try to meet the schedule. It also required the sinking of 10 deep shafts using pre-cast segments, shotcrete, steel liner plate and poured in place liners. 

5.7m ID Concrete Caisson Shaft


The project was completed just as the home sales were closing in spite of very difficult hard till soils with large boulders that took its toll on the excavation equipment.

5.75m ID Precast Reception Shaft


4.3m ID Open Cut Shaft Construction


3.0m ID Precast Manhole Installation