HS2 has revealed the logistics operation that is taking place at HS2’s logistics hub near Willesden Junction

The 30-acre site will be the ‘beating heart of the logistics operation for HS2’ in London and will be where earth from the 26 miles of tunnel will be processed and critical construction materials, such as pre-cast tunnel segment rings, will be delivered.

The hub has been constructed and will be operated by HS2’s Main Works Civils Contractor, Skanska Costain STRABAG joint venture (SCS JV).

The construction of HS2’s London tunnels will require 5.6 million tonnes of earth to be excavated.

The site will receive over 100,000 pre-cast tunnel segment rings which will be used to form the walls of the London tunnels, delivered by rail from UK manufacturing sites.

HS2’s contractor SCS JV has already confirmed that the first contract for pre-cast tunnel segment rings has been awarded to Pacadar UK, and will be delivered to the site from their factory in the Isle of Grain in Kent.

The operation is being coordinated from a refurbished building on the site. Sheffield based SME, 3Squared, has developed a bespoke rail logistics software solution to manage and track the railway materials movements in and out.

The London Logistics Hub sits on the old Freightliner Terminal site that first opened in 1967. It went on to become one of nine regional freight terminals developed specifically to handle Channel Tunnel intermodal traffic but eventually went into disuse in 2005. The site’s connections to the conventional railway make it an ideal location to coordinate HS2’s London logistics operation.

The logistics trains are currently operated by GB Railfreight and the entire operation is the result of meticulous planning between HS2, Network Rail, SCS JV and HS2’s supply chain. The first train departed the site at the end of June, taking 1,470 tonnes of spoil to Barrington in Cambridgeshire.

A critical part to building HS2

HS2 chief executive officer, Mark Thurston said: “In building Britain’s new high-speed railway, HS2 is committed to protecting the environment and minimising our carbon footprint during design, construction and operation.

“As a result, we are moving as much material as we can by rail as part of our Materials by Rail programme.”

Skanska Costain STRABAG joint venture managing director, James Richardson, said: “The logistics hub is central to the London Tunnels programme.

“Collaborating with other partners delivering HS2, we will remove 5.6 million tonnes of spoil by rail and bringing in our tunnel segments, taking one million lorry journeys off the road.

“We are committed to reducing our environmental impact and by using rail we will reduce our carbon emissions for logistics by 40%.”

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