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Łódź. Tunneling under the city center suspended, MP Joński writes to Jarosław Kaczyński about the “Łódź metro”

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PKP PLK and the Ministry of Infrastructure are completely unable to cope with the largest railway investment in the country – writes Dariusz Joński, a member of the Civic Coalition, in an open letter to Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński. The politician asks the president of Law and Justice ten questions about “one of the most important railway investments in the country”. According to the parliamentarian’s information, one of the shields drilling the tunnel has been idle for a year.

This is not the first time that MP Joński has sounded the alarm about the construction of a cross-city tunnel under Łódź. In June, he indicated that the investment is not implemented, because PLN 300 million is missing for the indexation of contracts. Now he has decided to send ten questions to Deputy Prime Minister Jarosław Kaczyński on this matter. “For a year, a large shield has been standing at the Polesie bus stop. According to the latest information, the shield is to be launched in August, i.e. 14 months after the work was stopped,” the politician points out, pointing out that the impasse threatens communication chaos in the city.

Among other things, the politician asks the PiS president whether PKP PLK, when preparing the tender, was not aware of the complexity of this project and how the investment described by us was affected by the history of technological foamwhich was coming out to Aleja Włókniarzy and blocked the tram traffic in this part of the city. Then the parliamentarian wants to know whether the problem of indexation of contracts has already been solved and asks whether PKP PLK reported the need for additional funds to complete the investment in connection with the need to secure buildings in the city center.

See all the questions that MP Joński asked Deputy Prime Minister Kaczyński

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PKP PLK about the “parking jet”

We asked PKP Polskie Linie Kolejowe for the comments of MP Joński related to the implementation of the investment, which was to be ready by December 2022. In the position sent to us, Karol Jakubowski from the PKP PLK press office emphasizes that the implementation of the investment is actually delayed, this is due to facts beyond the contractor’s control. These include the need to include an additional Łódź Koziny stop in the project, prepare the reinforcement of the area and tenement houses for the passage of a large shield in the city center, and the need to secure and inventory wells along the tunnel route. In addition, the delay is due to the fact that the implementation of the investment coincided with the COVID-19 pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Starting chamber for TBM KatarzynaPKP PLK

“These events, unique and unprecedented, were not indifferent in terms of time as well as financing for the Contractor and the Employer” – emphasizes Karol Jakubowski. He adds that the construction of the underground railway connection is scheduled for completion in 2024, and the launch of train traffic in 2025.

The representative of PKP PLK admits that TBM Katarzyna, i.e. the shield that is supposed to drill the tunnel, is currently not working. According to Karol Jakubowski, this stoppage has been going on since January this year. This is the so-called parking jet, so as to be able to continue strengthening and securing the indicated properties on the route between the Polesie passenger stop and the Śródmieście passenger stop.

Securing buildings

Karol Jakubowski informs in a message sent to tvn24.pl that the protection of buildings along the tunnel route will be carried out through the so-called compensation injections.

“The injection consists in injecting a cement binder into the subgrade in order to strengthen and stabilize the subgrade and minimize the impact of TBM drilling on buildings,” the PKP PLK representative said.

Interior of TBM FaustynaPKP PLK

Jakubowski also refers to the leakage of foam under Aleja Włókniarzy. He reports that the foam was coming out through a hole unidentified on the design maps.

“Preliminary findings show that the cause of the technological foam leak on Al. Włókniarzy was a hydraulic puncture (…) PLK SA is unable to determine on whose order and in what year the hole was made. The hole was not made on behalf of PLK SA and is related to the construction of the tunnel in Łódź. The current protection of the track is temporary, “we read in the statement.

Currently – as reported by Jakubowski – control tests are being carried out to perform a geotechnical risk analysis.

“They will make it possible to restore full functionality on Włókniarzy Avenue. The report should be ready in the coming days” – he emphasizes.

Lodz “metro”

The cross-city tunnel under construction is a continuation of the construction of the Łódź Fabryczna station, which will become a through station from the end station. Regional and long-distance trains will be able to travel through the very center of Łódź. As part of the investment, new stops will be built: Łódź Polesie, Łódź Śródmieście and Łódź Koziny. They are to be integrated with public transport and are supposed to make it easier for the inhabitants to move around the city. That is why the investment is sometimes called the construction of the “Łódź metro”.

The tunnel is to run under the very center of ŁódźPKP PLK

Main photo source: PKP PLK

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