ITA President Soren Eskesen visited Saint Petersburg

Danish Tunnelling Society representatives visited Saint Petersburg, Russia, on May 25-27, 2014, with Mr. Soren Eskesen, ITA president, leading the delegation.  Saint Petersburg specialists have a great experience to share regarding underground construction under difficult geotechnical conditions.


At the invitation of Association of Underground Builders CEO Sergei Alpatov Danish specialists visited Saint Petersburg, aiming to get to know better technologies applying by Russian specialists.

The invitation followed Sergei Alpatov’s report report on double-track tunnel construction with EPB TBM in Saint Petersburg at Nordic Forum meeting in Copenhagen last year, organized by Danish Tunnelling Society (DFTU).

Technical tours included visits to two construction sites: additional entrance to “Sportivnaya” metro station from the other bank of Neva river and metro station “Yuzhnaya” construction site, where TBM “Nadezhda” driving the double-track tunnel.

Also the meeting with Russian specialists from OAO “Metrostroy”  company, represented by chief engineer, deputy director general Aleksy Starkov, Design Institute “Lenmetrogiprotrans”, represented by chief engineer, deputy director general Vladimir Markov  (these two organizations in collaboration has been designing and constructing Saint Petersburg metro system throughout the years of its existence) and ZAO “Saint Petersburg IT- support for optimal conditions for integrated underground space use CENTER”, represented by its CEO Evgeni Lomakin.

They discussed Saint Petersburg’s difficult geology, where one of the deepest metro systems in the world has been constructed.

Even well-known technologies should be adapted, while being applied to these conditions. Russian engineers had to implement up to 300 improvements to the first design of TBM.  Also OAO “Metrostroy” specialists were the first to construct inclined tunnel with TBM equipment at an angle of 30 degrees. 

Technologies applying for Saint Petersburg metro system construction sometimes unique and are the subject of great interest. “Metrostroy” specialists answered questions of their Danish colleagues, reported on complicated works for historic center’s reconstruction, in particular in proximity to additional entrance to “Sportivnaya” metro station, emphasised the impressive quality of tubing, manufactured by “Metrobeton” plant in Saint Petersburg.

Evaluating results, ITA president Soren Eskesen emphasised that collaboration of Russia and countries – members of ITA regarding underground constructions is highly valuable.

Sergei Alpatov reminded the guests about 15th Wolrd Conference ACUUS 2016 to be held in Saint Petersburg. Sergei Alpatov expressed his gratitude for the discussion to Danish colleagues and Soren Eskesen in particular.

“We are grateful for your support and cooperation.  ITA in Russia may have a great influence. Participation in ACUUS-2016 would have a significant meaning for professional society” – commented Sergei Alpatov.