Experience in design and construction of the Log tunnel

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A twin highway Log tunnel is a part of a new motorway connection between Maribor and Zagreb, section Draženci-Gruškovje, which is located towards the border crossing between Slovenia and Croatia. The tunnel is currently under construction, and only the excavation works have been completed during the writing of this paper. The terrain in the area of the Log tunnel is diverse, and the route of the highway in its vicinity is characterised by deep excavations, bridges or viaducts. The Log tunnel is approximately 250 m long, partly constructed as a gallery. The geological conditions are dominated by Miocene base rock, featuring layers of well-connected clastic rocks, which are covered by diluvium clays, silts, sands and gravels of different thicknesses. Due to the short length of the tunnel, the usual separation of the motorway route to the left and the right tunnel axes was not carried out. Thus, the tunnel was constructed with an intermediate pillar and was designed as a three-lane tunnel, including the stopping lane. The construction of the tunnel was carried out using the New Austrian tunnelling method (NATM), in which the central adit was excavated first and the intermediate pillar was constructed within it. The excavation of the main tubes followed and was divided into the top heading, bench and the invert, enabling the intermediate pillar to take the load off the top heading of both tubes. The secondary lining of the tunnel is currently under construction. The experience of the tunnel construction gathered so far is presented in the paper. The main emphasis is on the construction of the intermediate pillar, which had to take the significant and asymmetrical ground load.

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