HS2 hits historic milestone as first TBM launches

HS2 Ltd will today launch the enormous 2,000 tonne tunnel boring machine (TBM) ‘Florence’ from HS2’s South Portal site next to the M25 in Hertfordshire, at an event attended by HS2 Minister Andrew Stephenson and HS2 (High Speed Two) Ltd CEO Mark Thurston among others.

Named after nursing pioneer Florence Nightingale, the TBM will dig the first of a pair of 10-mile long tunnels under the Chiltern hills and help to safeguard the woodland and wildlife habitats above ground.

HS2 Chief Executive Mark Thurston said: “The launch of our first tunnelling machine is a major moment of progress for the HS2 project as we work to deliver a high-speed railway that will offer low-carbon alternatives for long distance journeys across the UK.

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HS2 hits historic milestone as first TBM launches

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