1. Rating Infrastructure Sustainability (IS)

    All our projects in Australia (Sydney Metro City and Southwest and Cross River Rail) and New Zealand (Central Interceptor) are rated using the Infrastructure Sustainability (IS) system of the ISCA (Infrastructure Sustainability Council of Australia), a non-profit body focused on the sustainability of infrastructure projects. IS grades the sustainability of infrastructure projects during the work’s planning, design, construction and operation. For example, the Central Interceptor contract has an As-Built target rating of Excellent, which it should achieve by the end of the project. The rating includes the definition of a base case, which comprises a calculation of the design’s carbon footprint, that has to be improved to reach the score required by the client. The Sydney Metro City and Southwest project currently has the highest IS score: in 2019, it obtained a 100.05/110 score, the highest ever assigned by the IS rating, with the “Leading” rating awarded to the John Holland CPB Ghella (GHCPBG) JV for the design of the TSE (Tunnel and Station Excavation) works. The experience gained during these projects is an invaluable asset for Ghella, in a global context where the sustainability of works throughout their life cycle (including their development) is of increasing importance. 

  2. Riachuelo’s response to Covid-19: a risk analysis to protect employee health

    The Riachuelo worksite rolled out measures to prevent, mitigate and contain the Covid-19 infection risk.

    These measures were of an organisational nature, with the introduction of emergency management plans, questionnaires, protocols and instructions to transpose local regulations, and physical nature, such as the reduction of the number of people on each shift, social distancing, the provision of specific personal protective equipment, the measurement of body temperatures at the start and end of each working day, sanitisation of the work stations, the availability of company vehicles in place of public transport, the set-up of sanitisation points, training and serological tests. In order to act even more incisively in minimising the spread of the virus within the worksite, a mathematical model was developed for the early identification of potential positive cases to avoid outbreaks. The model assesses each worker’s personal risk level of becoming infected considering certain variables (tied to the work place, travelling to and from the work place and leisure time) which are assigned a factor expressed as the worker’s exposure to the risk in minutes. Workers with a potential high personal risk level are included in a monitoring group for weekly or twice-weekly serological tests depending on the pandemic’s evolution. They also receive additional training on preventive measures. The test results are monitored to calculate the infection rate at the worksite which is compared to that of Greater Buenos Aires. Analyses performed in 2020 show that the worksite’s infection rate (the ratio of confirmed positive cases to the number of workers) was always near zero, which shows a much better epidemiological situation than that of Greater Buenos Aires. This result demonstrated the mathematical model’s effectiveness and the importance of assessing the risk to the health of the worksite’s resources.

  3. STEPtember: moving together for a good cause

    In 2020, Ghella Pty took part in the fundraising campaign STEPtember, which involves thousands of Australians every year who take on the challenge of doing 10,000 steps a day for 28 days to raise funds for cerebral palsy, the most frequent cause of disability in small children. The funds are used for research, treatments and the services provided to people with this disease. At the same time, the initiative fosters the well-being of the participants and teamwork: organisations that have taken part in previous events have noted an average 29% improvement in team spirit, 19% in perceived well-being and 97% satisfaction rate with the experience.

    Ghella Pty’s contribution was greatly appreciated by Cerebral Palsy Alliance. Its 39 participants did 11,665,169 steps and raised AUD8,038 (around €5,000). The Sydney Metro City and Southwest worksite also promoted and enthusiastically took on the challenge with more than 70 employees of the JHCPBG joint venture participating in the event.

  4. Raising awareness about mental health at the Central Interceptor worksite

    The Central Interceptor worksite in New Zealand focused on raising awareness about mental health throughout 2020 and renewed its commitment to preventing and supporting this worthy cause.

    During Mental Health Awareness Month in September, the Ghella Abergeldie JV took part in the “Fly the Flag” initiative organised by Mates in Construction NZ (MIC). The joint venture is one of the founding partners of this organisation which provides worksite workers with training and assistance to those in need. On World Suicide Prevention Day, MIC flew the association’s flag showing its helpline number at the various worksites. During the same week, a staff member, Francis Williams, participated in TVNZ1’s popular Breakfast television programme with Richie Hepi of MIC to talk about mental health and the preventive measures carried out by Mates. The issue was concurrently discussed at the worksite during the toolbox talks, which are informal meetings held at the start of each shift. Workers were encouraged to nominate their colleagues for Random Act of Kindness Awards. Finally, 50 members of the joint venture’s workforce and their families took part in the 2020 Round the Bays fun run, involving more than 34,000 people in Auckland to raise funds for the Mental Health Foundation and in this way show support for Kiwis with mental health problems.

  5. Awareness raising and fundraising for oncology

    During the year, several projects were dedicated to cancer prevention and research at both corporate and worksite level. Promoting healthy lifestyles among employees is one of the many ways in which Ghella invests in people’s well-being, thus pursuing its corporate sustainability goals, especially in a year like 2020 in which resources and attention have been focused on just one aspect of health. On World Cancer Day in February, Ghella’s head offices organised a lecture by Professor Alessandro Vitale, a biologist and science communicator, on cancer prevention for men and women together with Fondazione Umberto Veronesi. During Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, the Central Interceptor worksite in New Zealand carried out various awareness raising and fundraising initiatives including cake sales and participation in the Pink Ribbon Street Appeal of the Breast Cancer Foundation of New Zealand (NZBCF). Worksite personnel took active part in the latter event, wearing pink helmets and collecting funds for breast cancer research, education, advocacy and patient support.

    In November, 31 members of the Central Interceptor staff participated in the Movember (a combination of the words moustache and November) initiative promoted by an international organisation that encourages awareness of mental health, prostate cancer and testicle cancer. The worksite’s team “Stashes of Glory” took on the challenge of growing a moustache to raise funds as well as to create a platform for dialogue about men’s mental health and well-being and to encourage regular check-ups. The CBGU joint venture of the Cross River Rail worksite in Brisbane began a partnership with the Leukaemia Foundation of Australia in 2020. It set itself the goal of raising AUD100,000 (around €63,000). The joint venture’s staff took part in initiatives like Shave for a Cure, a fundraiser where people who do not have cancer shave their heads to “normalise” the experience for people who undergo chemotherapy. The foundation’s aim is to eliminate onco-hematological cases in Australia by 2035. The team has already raised AUD20,000 (about €13,000) in just a year

  6. New TBMs celebrate iconic women and shared values

    In 2020, new machines joined Ghella’s fleet of TBMs, which traditionally have female names. This age-old custom has taken on new and socially valid meaning over the years. The Cross River Rail project TBMs were given the names of two ground-breaking women of Queensland to remember their exceptional contribution. Like the two machines, these women paved the way for the state’s better future. The first TBM is called ELSE, honouring Else Shepherd, the first woman to graduate in electrical engineering in Queensland, paving the way for all women who wanted to enter fields that were traditionally male dominated. Professor Shepherd was astonished to have been considered a ground breaker. She has met all the female engineers and the staff working on the Cross River Rail Project stating: “By being a female engineer when there weren’t many of us, I hope I’ve given other women the courage to do what they want to do – there’s nothing stopping us.” The second TBM is called MERLE, in honour of Merle Thornton, an active feminist who has represented women’s rights and social justice issues. Ms. Thornton was enthusiastic about a 1350 tonne TBM being named in her honour. She said: “I wouldn’t say I’ve had a ‘boring’ life, but I have always tried to cut through on various social issues, so perhaps it is fitting to have my name on one of these massive tunnelling machines.” The new TBM for the Central Interceptor project in New Zealand was officially named Hiwa-i-te-Rangi, after one of the Matariki stars to which Māori send their dreams or aspirations for the new year. Students from schools along the Central Interceptor tunnel route were asked to vote for the star they felt best represented the goals of the project and whose characteristics resonated with them personally. Hiwa-i-te-Rangi was the winning choice by over 100 votes. Finally, the two EPB TBMs at the Hanoi worksite have been called Than Toc and Tao Bao (literally “very fast” and “fearless”).

  7. Training and work experience for vulnerable members of the local community

    Our motto to generate value in the areas where we work is not limited to economic value but also encompasses social value: as part of both the Cross River Rail (Australia) and Central Interceptor (New Zealand) projects, we provide opportunities for personal, social and professional growth to local members of our workforce, focusing in particular on the more vulnerable categories. The CBGU joint venture’s training team at Cross River Rail worked with Construction Skills Queensland to develop the “Training Employment Working Group” (TEWG), whose members include public and private sector organisations of the construction industry. The TEWG mostly works with people in the vulnerable categories of Queensland’s population to provide them with training and employment opportunities and give them the basic skills to be better-placed for jobs in the industry through a guided pathway. The training programme includes qualifying courses on technical, safety, environmental, quality, management and leadership aspects as well as job placement programmes, which comprise traineeships and apprenticeships carried out directly at the schools or in the worksites. As a member of the TEWG, CBGU takes on the most ambitious participants who reach and surpass the targets set in the traineeship and apprenticeship programmes as employees or subcontractors. 
    During the year, the Ghella Abergeldie joint venture (GAJV) set up for the Central Interceptor project launched the 20-week “Dig Deep” literacy programme for its employees of the Maori and Pasifika communities, managed with the training company Education Unlimited NZ. The programme has reinforced the concept of respect for diversity within the workforce and promoted integration of the local populations into the worksite. Its objective is also to break down the main linguistic barriers to facilitate understanding and verbal and written communication. Some of the key milestones achieved thanks to Dig Deep have been the greater participation of the people who attended the course in meetings and worksite toolbox talks, asking for explanations when they are not sure they have understood properly, they are able to understand written and verbal technical and safety instructions, they can easily fill in the forms required on site and can complete the required training courses. During the course’s graduation ceremony, each participant shared their story, describing their learning process and celebrating their personal and work achievements.

  8. HR management during the Covid-19 emergency

    Human Resources are our most important asset. We benefit from the skills of individuals working together toward a common objective and we invest in their development, trying to identify the best path for them, personally and professionally.

    The pandemics called for a flexible and creative management of human resources, reinforcing the importance of people’s health and safety. We have chosen to put no employees on Covid-19 furlough, so to give a clear sign of economic stability and support families’ physical and mental wellbeing. This was an effort deemed necessary to fulfil the role we want our firm to have within society. We introduced organisational and physical prevention and protection measures with special protocols to prevent the occurrence of outbreaks. The challenge is to ensure our people can work in safe conditions by adopting new work methods and technologies. We introduced rosters for smart working and reorganised our office space, reconfiguring their layout to increase distance and installing plexiglass separators. We reviewed our cleaning and sanification procedures and also the rules regulating access to the building, to create a sense of safety in the workplace. Free meals have been delivered to individual offices, so to reduce the impact of our office activities on the local community by reducing mobility. We strengthened our video conferencing tools such are Cisco and Teams so to allow people to work remotely. Technology was pivotal to ensure business continuity. During the lockdown, the HR department liaised regularly with all employees, in Italy and abroad, via regular calls. Expatriate personnel who were unable to return to their families, often for several months, received a Covid-19 bonus and their unused travel tickets were reimbursed. Since March 2020, 90% of our training activities have been delivered through e-learning platforms. 

  9. McCullogh Way

    In September 2020, after a long period of planning and collaborations with various organisations, the JHCPBG JV (set up for the Sydney Metro City and Southwest project) contributed to the completion of the “McCullogh Way”, a paved pathway providing wheelchair access to the beach from Bear Cottage Hospice, which hosts children with terminal illnesses and which Ghella supports. The personnel of the joint venture and some of its subcontractors generously donated their time, resources and materials to accomplish this important project enabling families to enjoy the bushland around Manly Beach in Sydney. With this project and its direct donations to Bear Cottage Hospital, Ghella promotes its conviction that an essential part of its mission as a builder of excellence is to contribute to the development of the areas where we operate and the well-being of the local communities.

  10. Art goes underground at the Cross River Rail worksite

    The Cross River Rail joint venture joined forces with Camerata, Queensland’s Chamber Orchestra, for the Brisbane Festival of International Arts. Camerata performed at the Woolloongabba Station worksite as part of the “Art goes underground” initiative. The composer John Rotar performed a piece called Apis Australis, inspired by the industriousness of bees, a very appropriate theme for a construction site!

  11. Volunteering at the wor ksite: distribution of food in Argentina and New Zealand

    Ghella’s Matanza Riachuelo worksite in Buenos Aires is promoting food distribution to soup kitchens located along the route of its excavation project and in strategic areas near the city’s poorer districts. To date, around 1 tonne of pasta and rice has been donated, together with other foods such as tomato sauce and milk. The Matanza Riachuelo project, funded by the World Bank, affects seven million residents, of whom 10% live under the national poverty line. The current pandemic has aggravated the already serious economic crisis in Argentina, making this project even more important. A similar initiative took place at the Central Interceptor worksite in New Zealand: 25 members of the project’s joint venture took part in a voluntary “Eat my lunch” project. In just one day, they prepared more than 1,500 meals for children in low-income public schools. The project was also a team-building moment for the project’s staff, who worked together to achieve this goal.

  12. Make Give Live

    The Ghella Abergeldie JV and our customer Watercare joined forces at the Central Interceptor worksite in New Zealand to sponsor the Make Give Live association, a local social enterprise which makes knitwear for sale and donations to the community. For every article purchased, the association gifts an article to a person in need. We committed to buying 500 articles over the project. They will be distributed to the whanau (extended families) of the worksite’s personnel and we are also working with the association to identify segments of the local Kiwi population that could benefit from the donations. The first group was the children of May Road Primary School who received 200 pairs of wool slippers.

  13. SACE-BNL Green Loan

    In 2020 Ghella has signed a Green Loan with BNL Gruppo BNP Paribas with a new SACE guarantee in support of the Italian Green New Deal, the European plan that promotes a Circular Europe: modern, sustainable and resilient. The Green Loan, for a total of 40 million euros, has a duration of 5 years and is intended to support a wide plan of “green” investments for an overall value of approximately 100 million euros. The loan embraces diverse fields from urban regeneration to transportation infrastructure and the renewables sector. With this operation Ghella achieves a primacy: it is the first Green Loan, covered by SACE’s guarantees, obtained by a construction company and granted by BNL Gruppo BNP Paribas for Green Projects which have a positive impact in regard to environmental sustainability and particularly climate change. One of the characteristic aspects of this financing transaction is an innovative pricing mechanism which, through a discount on the rate, incentivises the company to achieve specific sustainability objectives. The main covenant is based on the Ecovadis global sustainability rating, which we are required to keep at Gold or Platinum level throughout the loan’s six-year term. The second covenant is tied to the circular economy and we have to guarantee the reuse of materials in specific processing phases of our contracts. The investment plan sustained by the Green Loan includes the realisation of the Brenner Base Tunnel which, together with the existing ring road of Innsbruck, will reach an overall length of 64 km, becoming the longest underground railway connection in the world. The new line is located on the HS railway Monaco – Verona, a key infrastructure part of the Trans-European Transport Network and included in the environmental objectives of the European Green New Deal on sustainable mobility. Alongside this transaction, we agreed with the same bank interest rate hedging derivatives with the same covenants, which also include a price penalty mechanism, with an additional interesting condition. If the covenants are not complied with, the bank is obliged to invest the entire extra income in a sustainability project such as the replanting of urban areas.

  14. Technology supporting Sustainability: knowledge sharing during Covid-19 times in Brisbane

    The Covid-19 emergency had a significant impact on the creation of knowledge sharing opportunities, which would previously have been in-person. The CBGU joint venture active on the Cross River Rail (CRR) project in Brisbane responded to this situation by developing and leading a number of recorded webinars in order to reach a geographically displaced audience, promote opportunities for improving sustainability performances and ensure the project achieved its sustainability objectives. These webinars also took place as “lunch and learn” occasions to learn about the use of low-carbon concrete and recycled aggregates in the CRR project. Another webinar was dedicated to the fibre-reinforced concrete applications in the project, emphasising in particular the use of recycled materials recently approved by the regulators. Finally, a webinar was held for the administrative and commercial personnel to present how their roles are fundamental for the integration of sustainability into the procurement and contractual activities.

  15. A story of transferred know-how: the “Palchetti method” in the Sydney Metro worksite

    During the construction of the Sydney Metro City and Southwest metro, it became necessary to develop a method to build the tunnel invert, the half-moon shaped bottom part of the tunnel, within the client’s tight timeline while maintaining our quality and safety standards. The engineer tasked with developing this method, Francesco Anghetti, comments: “I had worked with Francesco Palchetti in directing the works to upgrade the A14 motorway between Ancona Nord and Ancona Sud. This experience meant I was constantly exposed to Palchetti’s innovative ideas, put into practice during the project or successfully deployed on other prior projects”. They pooled their experience and found a mechanised prototype called “catamarano”, known at Ghella as the “Palchetti method”, to be the most suitable. This method had made it possible to achieve very high production output on previous projects thanks to the possibility of walking on the concrete that had just been poured for the tunnel floor using a platform and, therefore, without stopping the entry and exit of the concrete mixers and other operating machines. “The idea is based on the industrialisation principle of repetitive activities as part of a production process”, explains Anghetti. “These innovations reduce manpower involvement in the more risky and critical stages of the process and, accordingly, improve its safety levels”. The idea, previously used for the motorway project, was revisited and fine-tuned during a number of virtual meetings between Australia and Italy and the fruitful discussions with Mr. Palchetti. An independent propulsion platform was developed to travel on specially-installed tracks at the top level of the invert to allow the pouring, vibration and levelling of the concrete in a single ongoing production process. The Sydney Metro City and Southwest project’s senior management enthusiastically approved the idea and provided the budget necessary to finalise and build the platform and perform the entire production cycle. “This system,” said Anghetti, “generated production peaks of almost 130 linear metres a day at the Sydney worksite, allowing us to meet the client’s timeline.”

  16. Ghella MASK

    In 2020, Ghella invented and developed a Covid-19 mask that would also protect its workers against injuries. The idea was to merge a medical device with personal protective equipment to protect individuals at the Ghella worksites. The Ghella Mask was conceived to reduce the high environmental impact of face medical masks by designing FFP2 and FFP3 filters free from elastic bands or nasal underwires, making the mask more easily disposable and cheaper. Assisted by the inventor and designer Christian Fracassi25 of Isinnova, the device was designed and developed, and subsequently presented in 2021.

  17. Ghella for Rome, solid support to our Community .

    In a difficult time for Italy, Ghella has supported Covid-19 front line workers. In 2020, it donated €100,000 to the Lazzaro Spallanzani National Institute for Infectious Diseases, the Rome-based hospital which was the first to isolate the virus and has treated thousands of Covid-19 patients since the outbreak of the pandemic. “The work and expertise of the INMI Lazzaro Spallanzani staff are an Italian excellence that we are proud of, but we know that a battle like this one, against the coronavirus, cannot be won without adequate funds”, said Enrico Ghella, chairman and CEO during the March 2020 lockdown. “This donation is made possible thanks to the efforts of all of our Ghella personnel and collaborators who, by continuing to work with commitment and dedication, allows us to keep the company running despite this dramatic moment.” Ghella also supported Comunità di Sant’Egidio with a donation of €50,000. Sant’Egidio was set up in Rome and operates in more than 70 countries around the world to combat poverty and hunger. In May 2020, in Rome alone, the Community delivered 10 thousand food packages and opened 10 new distribution centres in the suburbs. To achieve our vision of leaving a better world to the next generations, it is important to do our best to ensure that no one is alone.


    The INSIEME exhibition was conceived by Gianni Politi and achieved with Ghella’s support, promoted by Roma Capitale and the Sovrintendenza Capitolina ai Beni Culturali. After the tough lockdown, Politi wished to showcase Rome’s resilience and the strength of its cultural ferment. He decided to use the Aurelian Walls as the backdrop to exhibit the works of 19 artists, selected by him as curator, to create a link between the monument and contemporary art. The exhibition was on display from 22 October to 30 November 2020 on the part of the Aurelian Wall on Via di Porta Labicana during one of the more restrictive periods when all the national museums were shut. Works by Maurizio Altieri, José Angelino, Micol Assaël, Elisabetta Benassi, Joanne Burke, Alessandro Cicoria, Stanislao Di Giugno, Rä di Martino, Giuseppe Gallo, Vostok Lake, Emiliano Maggi, Marta Mancini, Andrea Mauti, Nunzio, Lulù Nuti, Alessandro Piangiamore, Gianni Politi, Pietro Ruffo and Delfina Scarpa.

  19. Energy and CO2 savings at the Central Interceptor worksite

    Electric locomotives in the tunnel

    The Central Interceptor worksite uses electric locomotives in the tunnel, rather than the traditional locomotives powered by diesel generators. This decision generates many benefits for the environment and workers’ health and safety. Firstly, the use of electricity, which is 70% to 80% generated from renewable sources in New Zealand, has allowed an estimated reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 400 tCO2eq. Exhaust gases and fumes are eliminated, improving indoor air quality and reducing noise pollution in a confined environment. Finally, the decision to deploy electric locomotives reduces the risk of fire associated with the storage, handling of fuel and refueling, as the risk of fire at the battery recharging stations can be minimised by complying with the manufacturer's recommendations and isolating them from flammable environments. 

    Lighting towers

    In 2020, Ghella installed five solar-powered lighting towers at the Māngere and May Road sites, instead of diesel-fueled lighting towers. This generates diesel savings with a positive effect on the environment and operating costs: a concrete example that being sustainable does not necessarily cost more. In addition, there are numerous operating advantages: the solarpowered lighting towers are mobile and can easily be reused in other sites, and they are silent, so they do not disturb the neighbouring residents.

  20. Quantification and certification of the impacts of the Brenner CE ring

    In November 2020, Ghella obtained the environmental product declaration (EPD) for the precast concrete ring used in the construction of the exploratory tunnel (CE ring) of the Brenner Base Tunnel. The EPD is a voluntary certification used to communicate transparent, verified and comparable information on the environmental impacts of a product, including its contribution to global warming. The declaration summarises the results of a LCA (life cycle assessment) study, which quantifies all the flows of materials, energy and emissions associated with the various phases of the CE ring’s life cycle, from the extraction and processing of the raw materials to their transport to the worksite and finally the manufacturing of the ring at the segment factory. The CE ring is the first concrete ring in the world to obtain an EDP certification and to be published on the International EDP System platform. This exercise has also produced certified and publicly available “emission factors”, helping enhance scientific information on the environmental impacts generated by the construction industry. Besides providing objective information on the impacts of the CE ring, the study has also allowed the identification of the most significant contributions to the overall impacts (the so-called hotspots) and of specific measures that could potentially be implemented in order to improve performance over time. The results of the study can be used as a yardstick to evaluate the impacts of the same product when manufactured in other projects, and in other countries, and could be used to support the definition of standard requirements aimed at maximizing its environmental performances in the future, in an eco-design perspective.

  21. Lesson learned on the treatment of hexavalent chromium in the tunnel water at the Follo Line worksite

    Chromium (Cr) is a metallic element commonly found in nature as trivalent chromium (CrIII), a nutrient that does not dissolve in water. In certain alkaline and/or oxidising conditions, a hexavalent chromium (CrVI) is obtained which forms water-soluble and highly toxic solutions. The treatment of chromium in tunnel water is a challenge for the tunnelling industry. During the excavations with the Follo Line TBMs, higher concentrations of CrVI were found compared to those during the traditional drill & blast excavation phase. The Acciona Ghella joint venture (AGJV) readied an action plan to resolve the issue, carrying out investigations, studies, tests, research, consultations with other sector companies and external consultants, laboratory trials and industrial-scale implementations while the tunnel boring activities continued and the water treatment system was working at full capacity. The analysis of the untreated water samples taken from the tunnel, the concrete mixing plant and the grout plant showed that:

    - the water soluble CrVI made up 80%-100% of the total chromium in the samples; 

    - the main source of CrVI pollution was the cement-based mortar that was mixed with sodium silicate during the TBM’s passage through the tunnel and deposited in the space between the tunnel segments and the perforated rock. The rapid reaction time triggered the chromium’s oxidation from the trivalent form to the hexavalent form, which was released into the water filtering into the tunnel from the mountain.

    Other potential sources, such as the small quantities of chromium in the steel alloys of the TBM’s cutters or its natural presence in certain types of rock, were excluded.

    After evaluating various treatment methods, the joint venture concluded that the best option for this project was to treat the water with iron sulphate. It considered two important requirements: the treatment’s effectiveness on a large scale and the adaptability of the existing treatment system at the Follo Line worksite. The treatment was successful with an 80% reduction in the CrVI.

    This experience showed that, while the presence and treatment of CrVI can be challenging for the tunnelling and cement industries, it can be resolved. AGJV presented the results of the case study at several industry conferences and other projects have adopted this method, which is used as a benchmark by the Oslo municipality

  22. Relocation of trees removed from construction site areas in Hanoi

    Building a metro line in an urban context requires careful management of the local flora, in order to ensure its conservation. The relocation program for trees with a trunk diameter greater than 200 mm - envisaged by the Pilot Light Line 3 project in Hanoi - involved 311 plants of different tree species - including Lagerstroemia speciosa (89), Alstonia scholaris (42), Ficus benjamin (26), Senna siamea (26) and Engelhardtia roxburghiana (15) - located in the areas selected for the construction of subway stations, shafts and access ramps. All the trees were mapped, photographed and surveyed, by recording information about species, diameter, circumference, height, location and their state of health. In addition to recognising their naturalistic value, the residents of Hanoi believe in the sacredness of trees, in the belief that the oldest ones retain traces and memories of past people and events; a common tradition is to light incense on their roots. In this case, a short prayer ceremony was held before the relocation activities started. Removal and transport were carried out in line with best practices, ensuring the integrity of the trees during the transfer to the nearby green area placed in the Vinh Ngoc traffic island, originally characterised by uneven vegetation, consisting of wild plants, sparse shrubs and no shade trees, and with an overall unsightly effect on the surrounding urban landscape. The surface of this area - equal to 2.2 ha - was at a lower level than the surrounding roads so levelling works were carried out before the replanting activities, in order to avoid any flooding that could compromise the success of the operation and the good health of the trees in future years.

  23. The restoration of Puketutu Island in Central Interceptor's construction site

    The Central Interceptor project will contribute to the restoration of an important symbol of the Maori natural and cultural heritage. Spoil from the Central Interceptor project sites will be transported to Puketutu Island for use in part of the programme of works that aim to recontour and shape the island’s lost volcanic cones and restore it to a state that more closely represents its history and cultural significance. Te Motu a Hiaroa, also known as Puketutu Island, is sacred to the people of Te Kawerau ā Maki, Te Waiohua and Waikato-Tainui. Historically the island had five volcanic cones, three of which were extracted in the 1950s. One million cubic meters of scoria and basalt rock were removed to construct Auckland Airport’s runway, leading to the disappearance of these volcanic cones. Once complete, the island will become a public reserve for recreational use. Throughout the reserve, signage will tell the history of the island, seizing an opportunity to inform and educate the local community and visitors, allowing them both to interact with the island’s cultural and natural heritage. Reusing the spoil on Puketutu Island will not only benefit the cultural landscape but it will also significantly reduce the distance that spoil haul trucks will have to travel, and as a result, the associated greenhouse gas emissions, as Puketutu Island is less than 5 km from Māngere, the site of the TBM launch shaft for this project.. This reuse of the spoil will avoid the extraction of new aggregates from quarries, leading to a reduction in the consumption of raw materials and costs.

  24. Reuse of crushed glass at Cross River Rail

    Cross River Rail was the first project in South East Queensland to trial the use of crushed recycled glass as an alternative to aggregates and natural quarry products. An excellent example of the circular economy achieved with the Brisbane City Council, Queensland Rail, Cross River Rail Delivery Authority and Enviro Sand. Every year in South East Queensland about 40,000 tonnes of glass end up in landfill. We have estimated that we can potentially reuse more than 10,000 tonnes of crushed recycled glass over the project's life cycle as an alternative to sand and other types of aggregates for filling, draining or pipe coverings. This initiative allows savings of natural mineral resources and a reduction in the related environmental and social impacts. It has also created new jobs in the local supply chain. There are plans to use this practice in the subsequent package, which includes the upgrading of two stations and work on the integrated railway control system, showing the importance of sharing best practices among projects and worksites.

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