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NHS bid document blunder delays £150m Edinburgh hospital

September 30th, 2019 Comments off

An error in a tender document is being blamed for the delayed opening of Edinburgh’s £150m children’s hospital by more than a year.

The opening has been set back to 2020 because of ventilation problems in the critical care facility, which could cost an extra £90m to rectify.

An independent review of the governance of the project by KPMG has found that the main issue with ventilation in critical care stemmed from an error in a document produced by NHS Lothian at the tender stage in 2012.

Documents issued to bidders stated single bed cubicles and four-bed rooms in the critical care ward required a ventilation system with four air changes per hour. But the relevant guidance requires 12 changes per hour for this type of ward.

The bid race for the non-profit distributing PFI-style contract was won by Multiplex-led IHS Lothian consortium with a target date to open in July this year.

But days before the opening serious problems with the ventilation system were uncovered during tests by an independent contractor.

The Scottish Government said it would now parachute in a senior programme director to take responsibility for day to day delivery of the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People from now until the site is fully occupied.

A new national body – Programme for Government – will also be created to have oversight for the design, planning, construction and maintenance of major NHS Scotland infrastructure developments.

The KPMG report attributes this to human error and confusion over interpretation of standards and guidance. It also concluded that opportunities to spot and rectify that error were missed.

Scottish health secretary Jeane Freeman said: “I am of course bitterly disappointed that a mistake made in 2012 was not picked up earlier.

“This is a publicly funded project of strategic importance, which has not been delivered by NHS Lothian in compliance with the standards and guidance.

“The delay we now face will be borne by NHS Lothian staff, by patients and their families and the additional cost will be to the public purse.”

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New construction minister to receive divided Brexit message at UK Construction Week

September 27th, 2019 Comments off

The new Construction Minister Nadhim Zahawi MP is set to make his first industry appearance at UK Construction Week (UKCW), the UK’s largest built environment event, at the NEC in Birmingham on Wednesday 9 October.

A survey of over 900 construction professionals conducted by UKCW[1] asked respondents what their one request to the Construction Minister and the Government would be.

The results of the survey revealed an increasingly impatient industry still focused on Brexit, but split between those who want the Government to ‘Get Brexit completed’ (37%, with the vast majority of those favouring a “no ifs or buts” approach), and those who want to ‘Cancel Brexit altogether’ (32%). 

Within the industry itself, the research reveals that it’s mostly architects who are Remainers, with 57% of those respondents choosing to make ‘Cancel Brexit’ their number one request, compared to 15% choosing ‘Get Brexit completed’.

This swaps over when it comes to contractors, with 44% of those respondents choosing ‘Get Brexit completed’ compared to 20% choosing ‘Cancel Brexit’.

Other political and policy issues came much further down the list. The alternative number one requests from respondents were for the Government to speed up initiatives in construction to tackle climate change (9%), the cancellation of HS2 (a surprising 4%, mostly from consultants), and reform to planning laws and policies to make it easier to build (3%).

Nathan Garnett, UKCW event director, said:

“The splits in the construction industry’s views simply reflect what’s happening in society generally. But it is a really difficult time for this sector at the moment, a sector that absolutely hates uncertainty. The Minister will hear this very clearly when he attends this year’s event – whether it’s deal or no deal, or cancelling it altogether, we just want to know how to prepare for the future.”

Despite the uncertainties, and to help the 30,000 or more industry delegates expected at the show, UK Construction Week is hosting a wide range of CPDs and keynote speeches to explain what can be done to prepare for the post-Brexit future.

For example, a major debate on the UKCW main stage will take place on Wednesday 9 October, on Brexit Boom or Bust? Industry Economic Forecast 2020. This features Professor Noble Francis, economics director at the CPA, Tom Hall, chief economist at Barbour ABI, and Lord Digby Jones, cross bench peer and businessman.

The Office for Product Safety and Standards will be holding workshops on timber regulations and the impact of a no-deal exit on timber importers.

The Department for Work and Pensions will be advising construction professionals in the UKCW Careers Centre and HMRC is in the Civils area of the show (stand C21). In addition, the Department for Education will be promoting apprenticeships and talking about educational options in the UK for EU nationals post-Brexit.

Nadhim Zahawi MP was appointed in July as the third Construction Minister so far this year.  He will be giving a keynote address on the UKCW Main Stage on day two of the event, at 2:15pm. Pre-booking is strongly advised.

UKCW is one event with many sections, including Build sponsored by Easy-Trim, Building Tech, Civils, Energy and HVAC, Surface and Materials, and Timber. It also features Concrete Expo (8-9 October only) and Grand Designs Live (9-10 October only). Single registration gives free access to all areas of the show. Pre-booking is also strongly recommended for the extensive seminars and CPD programme.

Find out more about UKCW at: https://www.ukconstructionweek.com/


[1] Research with 906 respondents within the construction industry and registered to attend UK Construction Week was conducted in September 2019.

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The world’s largest crane has started work on the Hinkley Point nuclear power station site.

September 27th, 2019 Comments off

The massive crane, called Big Carl after Carl Sarens the father of the Belgian family business that made it, is able to carry 5,000 tonnes in a single lift.

The 250m tall crane has been developed to support the growth of modularisation in big construction.

Now the tallest man-made structure in the west country, it will be on site for the next four years and lift over 700 pieces of prefabrication including the heaviest components for the reactor buildings.

The SGC-250 runs along six km of rail track and at 50m radius, the crane can lift the equivalent of 32 single-storey houses or 1,600 cars.

It was brought to Hinkley Point C in 280 loads from its base in Antwerp via Bristol Port’s Avonmouth Docks.

Rob Jordan, Hinkley Point C construction director said: “The crane is an impressive piece of kit and a world beater.

“It allows us to innovate in the way we build the power station, lifting complete pieces out of our factory bunkers and into place across the site.”

Sarens director of Technical Solutions, Carl Sarens, said: “The SGC-250 is a game-changer. Sarens is proud to have conceived its design, designed it, and built it. We believe that this creation will serve Hinkley Point C and other sites around the world like no other crane can.”

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How to effectively deal with hazardous waste

September 26th, 2019 Comments off

If your company produces or stores hazardous waste, then it is your responsibility to ensure it is stored and handled correctly. Of course, if this type of waste is mishandled or poorly stored, it has the potential to damage both the environment and people. In particular, hazardous waste can contaminate surface water supplies and groundwater supplies, which in turn can lead to a much wider-reaching problem.

It’s understandable then, that the UK government has strict policies in place regarding the monitoring and transport of potentially harmful material. Together with Reconomy, waste management experts, we’ve produced this guide to help you make sure your duty of care is being carried out correctly.

Identifying different types of waste

If you produce or store hazardous waste on-site, you must identify the waste type in order to correctly handle it. There are two main conditions that define different hazardous waste types — the potential to harm humans, or the potential to damage the environment.

Some common examples of hazardous waste include asbestos, batteries, oils, brake fluid, printer toner, and pesticides.

Of course, there are many other hazardous waste products that could be identified on your site. It is important to know the different types of hazardous waste your company creates, as they need storing separately. For example, if you are working on a construction site, you cannot throw hazardous material in the same standard 8 yard skip you have for general waste and rubble — each type of hazardous waste needs its own container.

Safe storage for hazardous waste material

Naturally, the best way to manage hazardous waste is to reduce the amount you are producing. But for some companies, hazardous waste products are an unavoidable part of the process for their industry. In this instance, the waste must be stored, recorded, then correctly transported.

There are four main subcategories for hazardous waste: construction, demolition, industry, and agriculture. Each type should be separately stored in a container designed to stop anything escaping. To prevent contamination, make use of waterproof covers to avoid any run off from the waste. Be sure that the containers are clearly labelled so that everyone on-site is aware of what they are storing.

A classified inventory of your hazardous waste stored on-site is also vital. These records will help in the case of an incident, as emergency services will be able to quickly attend to the problem armed with the right information.

Record-keeping

Once your hazardous waste is collected, you will need to fill out a consignment note. This needs to be done before the waste is removed from your site.

Consignment notes require the following information:

  • A full description of each type of waste that is being collected.
  • The amount, in applicable measurement units, of waste being collected.
  • The chemical components of the waste.
  • The form of the waste (solid, liquid, gas, etc.)

You need to fill out a consignment note if the collection is from a business that is a registered waste carrier, or if the waste is being moved from one premises to another within the same company. You will also need a consignment note if another business has produced the waste on a customer site and it needs moving.

You do not need a consignment note is the waste has been imported and is covered by other documentation, or for domestic hazardous waste (except asbestos).

Finally, there is a fee to pay for the consignment note. In England and Wales, this fee is £10 for a collection, or £5 per note if it is part of a milk round of collections. In Scotland and Norther Ireland, the fee is £15.

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Bluebeam launches international ad campaign with Reed Words and SomeOne

September 26th, 2019 Comments off

Brand writing agency Reed Words and global creative agency SomeOne have created a major international advertising campaign for Bluebeam Revu – the leading software for the architecture, engineering and construction industries.

Building on US success

Bluebeam Revu lets construction project partners markup, track and collaborate on the same PDF plan. From anywhere, and in real time. 

With Revu, users can finish tasks 70% faster and with 90% more accuracy than traditional pen-and-paper workflows.

Bluebeam Revu is already dominant in the US, where it’s used and trusted by over 90% of top contractors and design-build firms. To replicate this success in other markets, Bluebeam briefed Reed Words, who had already worked on the brand’s European tone of voice, to create an ad campaign that captured Revu’s transformative qualities for an international audience.

Life-changing simplicity

Reed Words called on long-time creative collaborators SomeOne as conceptual and visual partners on the project. Working closely together, the two agencies created a campaign that explains the impact of Bluebeam Revu’s radically impactful features.

Writer Jade Barrett, of Reed Words, says,“Bluebeam has loads of features, but for new users, it’s the simplest tools that make the biggest impact. The time spent on manual, repetitive jobs drops from days to hours, hours to minutes and minutes to seconds. For architects, engineers and builders, Bluebeam is lifechanging. That idea became the foundation of this campaign.”

Working with the new ‘Life-changing software’ strapline, SomeOne developed a hyper-realistic style of photography with photographer Simon Sorted for the campaign visuals.

Simon Manchipp, Executive Creative Director of SomeOne, says “You wouldn’t imagine technical software to be that exciting. But here, it’s all consuming. The new work is holding a mirror up to the audience. UltraHD portraits capture the moment when potential customers discover the power of Bluebeam. We wanted to reflect that visual expression of wonder, as it’s what new users do when the penny drops”.

Reed Words developed the campaign messaging in line with their previous work on localising Bluebeam’s brand voice to the UK.

“Our localisation research was a good steer for the messages that would hit home in the UK, and other new markets,” said Jade Barrett.

“New audiences need to hear about Bluebeam’s basic features. But we wanted the messaging to move beyond functionality – to land an emotional punch that lives up to the core concept. So we focused our headlines on how Bluebeam takes care of the repetitive tasks that drain hours from the working day.”

Ready for launch

The outdoor campaign has already been launched in Australia, ahead of its UK launch in late September. The campaign is also set to run extensively in several European markets, including Denmark, Germany & Sweden.

“We’re thrilled with how this campaign has turned out,” said Jon Setzen, Senior Global Creative Director of Bluebeam. “Reed Words and SomeOne have understood our brand perfectly from the start. They’ve captured the impact and spirit of Bluebeam in an inspiring way. We’re excited to see it roll out.”

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BIM Show Live 2020

September 25th, 2019 Comments off

BIM Show Live has today issued a Call for Papers for its 2020 event which will be held on 26-27 February 2020 at the Boiler Shop in Newcastle, UK.

The annual two day conference attracts up to 400 delegates and provides a unique opportunity for built environment professionals to exchange knowledge on the emerging ideas and technological advancements in digital construction and beyond. 

BIM Show Live is inviting the best in the business to take part and be considered for its 2020 speaker programme.

The show wants to hear about the emerging ideas and the creative application of new technologies, as well as the bright individuals making waves in the digital construction industry and beyond.

Submissions are being accepted until Thursday 07 November 2019 across four key content streams:

  • Technology
  • Next Generation
  • People
  • Stories

For further information please see the below press release.  

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Phase 3 of the Sunderland Strategic Transport Corridor (SSTC) awarded to Aarsleff Ground Engineering Ltd

September 25th, 2019 Comments off

With an estimated completion date of Autumn 2021, a multi-million-pound project to improve Sunderland’s road network is well underway, moving into the third of five phases. The project will create a dual carriageway through Pallion, running underneath the Queen Alexandra Bridge, into Deptford and onto the city centre and St Mary’s Boulevard. The contract will also deliver a comprehensive Social Value package which includes training and employment opportunities for local residents, support for local primary and secondary students, work experience placements for college and university students and a number of full-time jobs.

The £35.6M construction contract for phase 3 works was awarded to Esh Civils; the civil engineering division of Esh Construction. Andy Radcliffe, Esh Group’s Chief Executive said: “We have a proven track record of infrastructure delivery across a range of sectors and have established a first-class team of professionals to work with our client and our local supply chain to deliver this project”.

Aarsleff Ground Engineering were appointed by Esh to undertake the geotechnical works in early July. These works comprise the design and construction of a contiguous bored pile retaining wall, a large soil nailed wall and a ground anchor investigation trial.

Between August 7th to 30th August 2019, Aarsleff Ground Engineering installed and tested 3No. investigation trial anchors to confirm the ultimate bond stress at the rock/grout interface. Anchor loads in excess of 4000 kN have been successfully proven during the trial. The results shall be used to develop the permanent anchor design for the lower Pallion king post retaining wall.

Aarsleff’s Senior Geotechnical Consultant Dr. Dan Adams said: “The proposed lower Pallion king post retaining wall requires anchor working loads in excess of 2000kN; these will be large anchors with up to 16 No. strands. The trial has allowed us to investigate the load transfer behaviour of the proposed anchors but also confirm the ultimate rock/grout bond stresses achievable in the underlying limestone. This is a great opportunity for Aarsleff to work closely with the Esh team and deliver this technically challenging scheme with our wide range of geotechnical capabilities”.

Andrew Georgeson (Operations Director, Esh Civils) said: “By gaining the successful information from the trial anchors carried out by our partners Aarsleff, we can now verify and continue with our enquiries for detailed design and install for the permanent anchors. Schemes of this nature and size don’t come often, we look forward to engaging further with Aarsleff and other specialists to deliver these works which require precise planning and coordination to maintain accessibility for numerous stakeholders

It is anticipated that over 100 No. ground anchors, some with working loads in excess of 2000 kN shall be installed. The specialist contractor’s drilling rigs will operate from both the toe and the top of the proposed lower Pallion king post retaining wall to install up to four rows of anchors. It is expected that the anchors will comprise boreholes of up to 195mm diameter in the founding limestone with anchor lengths up to 30 m. Thee bores shall be supported through the overlying overburden, where required, with temporary casing and advanced with an overburden drilling system using DTHH’s with air flush. Upon completion of drilling to the required depth, the anchor tendons will be installed, and the borehole will be grouted using neat cement grout and adopting low pressure end of casing grouting techniques where appropriate as the temporary casings are removed. Upon completion of the suitability and acceptance testing’s, all anchors will be locked off at the specified load and fitted with non-restressable head assemblies.

In late July, Aarsleff Ground Engineering were again appointed to design and install a 600mm diameter contiguous pile wall for a 5m retained height. The specialist will bore, concrete and reinforce 115No. contiguous piles at 750mm centres for an overall wall length of 85m, complete with 63mm inclined drains running at 1.5m centres to the base of the wall. This is expected to be completed in a 4-week programme.

Aarsleff Ground Engineering have also been contracted for the design and installation of the soil nailing works on this scheme, where it will install 1198No. soil nails for a 1995m2 face area. The specialist will install 9-12m long self-drilling soil nails and inclined drains for the permanent stabilisation of cut slope. They will fix galvanised A393 Mesh to face and secure with soil nail headplates. A non-structural facing with 300mm thick stone filled gabion baskets will then be installed bottom-up. Aarsleff’s soil nail sequence is based on deploying 2 soil nailing rigs working continuously in a top-down construction sequence, for approximately 9 weeks. The installation of the non-structural gabion facing should take 11 weeks.

Dr. Dan Adams added: “We are delighted with the award of these challenging geotechnical works. Delivering an alternative contiguous bored pile wall combined with the large soil nailed retaining structure and the permanent anchors for the Lower Pallion wall will require close team work and good communication with our Client and Clients team in order to deliver the works safely, on time and to budget.”

Aarsleff Managing Director Kevin Hague said: “Major infrastructure schemes like the Sunderland Strategic Transport Corridor will always require accurate and robust planning as well as logistics and thorough communications between all parties involved throughout the project duration. It is therefore a great pleasure of mine to be working with Esh again, a company whom we have built a great working relationship with having worked on several projects before in the North-East. In 2016, we stabilised a steep bankside in Pelaw Woods, Durham. In 2018, we installed soil nails for the steepening of an embankment in Gosforth and most recently in 2019 we installed a contiguous pile wall for the road widening scheme on Killingworth Road in Newcastle.” 

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New video series covers all the fire door safety basics

September 24th, 2019 Comments off

A series of short video interviews with fire door safety expert Hannah Mansell have been launched to mark Fire Door Safety Week which runs this week (23-29 September 2019).

The videos give advice on each stage of the process to anyone buying or specifying fire doors, including architects, contractors and clients.

Brief interviews cover topics such as the role of fire doors in building and life safety, the crucial difference between ‘doors’ and ‘doorsets’, the manufacturing standards that customers should expect and the importance of the fire door testing and certification regime. Hannah also gives tips on installation and maintenance of fire doors, as well as her personal views on innovation, the residents’ voice and the future of fire safety in the UK.

Hannah is Group Technical Director at Masonite UK, one of the world’s leading door manufacturers serving both the residential and architectural markets. She is also chair of the Passive Fire Protection Forum and a trustee of the Children’s Burns Trust.

Hannah Mansell says:

“Fire safety is never far from the headlines at the moment, and the role of fire doors in protecting life and property keeps coming up as a major issue. Fire doors are a critical safety device, engineered as a system to protect building users and the emergency services too.

“However, the current official guidance on fire doors is still not as clear as it could be. So I think it is incredibly important for specifiers, contractors and everyone involved in building safety to build a close working relationship with their fire door manufacturer, and to make the most of the technical expertise we can offer.”

A new fire door safety video will be published on Premdor’s YouTube channel and other social media accounts on each day of Fire Door Safety Week.

Hannah joined Masonite earlier this year after five years as technical manager at the British Woodworking Federation. She has had a major influence on technical and safety policy throughout her 20-year career in the doors and joinery industry.

Masonite currently serves approximately 9,000 customers in 64 countries, and is represented in the UK through the Premdor Crosby, Solidor, Door Stop International and National Hickman brands.

Premdor offers an array of moulded, veneered and laminated fire doors in a variety of styles, colours and wood grain finishes. Fire doors are available in 30-minute (Fireshield FD30) and 60-minute (Firemaster FD60) options. Premdor’s fire rated doors and doorsets are compliant with all relevant British Standards and have been tested in accordance with BS 476: Part 22.

www.premdor.co.uk/fire-doors

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Timber tops the agenda for design and construction in the Midlands

September 24th, 2019 Comments off

Timber design and construction is set to dominate the Midlands this autumn.

WoodFest Midlands features conferences, exhibitions, site visits, seminars, CPDs, design challenges and debates to celebrate the use of timber in construction.

Organised by the UK timber industry’s campaign, Wood for Good, WoodFest is a series of events designed to bring together architects and engineers, placemakers and planners, developers and contractors, industry and politics to explore what forestry and timber can do in the region.

Christiane Lellig, campaign director for Wood for Good said: “With a focus on offsite construction, housing and sustainability, WoodFest Midlands promises to offer a fantastic opportunity to bring all those involved with the built environment to explore what can be achieved when we work together.

“Each event is a chance to learn and share about the use of timber in architecture and provides a platform to discover what’s happening in the region and to be inspired by timber design.”

Open to the public later in the year, visitors are invited to explore De Montford University’s ‘micro-living project’ – a 15m2 sustainable living pod built with wood. The self-build pod will be demountable, extendible, accessible and built from sustainable materials. It has been designed by a group of 3rd year architecture students with support from industry experts Hanson, Jeld-Wen, timber industry body TRADA, engineering consultant Dominic Pask, RG+P Architects and Leicester City Council. Live Build projects and events will also take place at Nottingham University.

RIBA East Midlands is hosting a series of CPD seminars including designing inclusive environments for the future and sustainable design solutions. The RIBA Great British Buildings series will visit the timber-panelled Nevill Holt Opera in Leicester and the award-winning timber-built Teaching and Learning Building at the University of Nottingham.

Hosted by the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, the RIBA Research Matters conference takes place on 17-18 October at the Nottingham Jubilee Campus. The programme includes case studies and research featuring a selection of award-winning wooden buildings.

Three free exhibitions take place during autumn in Coventry and Birmingham showcasing offsite construction and timber products. Offsite Expo runs from 24-25 September at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry and includes the latest in offsite construction technologies including CLT, timber frame and timber panel construction.

UK Construction Week runs from 8-10 October and TRADA’s Timber Focus Theatre will showcase the very best projects using wood in the built environment. Architectural timber structures and award-winning designs will be on display, including a number of full-scale buildings.

Visitors can brush up on their knowledge with a range of CPDs covering subjects from offsite timber solutions and the circular economy together with a range of timber-focussed case studies. Visitors will also have the chance to unleash their creativity and try their hand at steam bending with architect Charlie Whinney.

Also taking place at the NEC on 22 October, Modular Matters will show how modular construction can be used for a variety of applications from education, leisure through to housing.

Constructing Excellence Midlands is set to host its 2nd Mental Health and Wellbeing Leadership Forum at the National Forest Headquarters in Swadlincote on 24 October. It will also host its Annual Construction Summit on 8 October at the NEC with a focus on zero carbon, quality and compliance, health and wellbeing, digitalisation and offsite.

WoodFest Midlands partners include: Constructing Excellence Midlands, James Latham, The National Forest, RIBA and TRADA. WoodFest Midlands follows three successful WoodFests in Newcastle, Sheffield and Reading.

Book your place at any of the WoodFest Midlands events here.

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DIGGING DEEP: 5 AMAZING UNDERGROUND CONSTRUCTIONS

September 23rd, 2019 Comments off

A hot topic in the construction industry today is whether building underground, rather than creating more above ground, is the way forward.

According to various reports, it’s not that we’re running out of space, a theory that has been greatly exaggerated in the past, it’s to do with two main factors, city density and the environment. We can keep building skyscrapers and expanding our cities, but we are already approaching the limit for how high we can build, and we don’t want to sacrifice any more of the natural world with expanding cities. So, the only logical move is downwards, but is it possible?

The simple answer, yes! In fact, there are some structures thousands of feet underground that are quite staggering that not many know about. Here’s a list of five of the most amazing underground constructions on, or should we say, in earth.

5 Amazing Underground Constructions

Jinping Underground Laboratory

Deepest Building In The World

The first on our list is the Jinping Underground Laboratory. Famed for being the deepest building in the world, this lab is located nearly 8,000 feet within the 14,500 feet high Jinping mountains in Sichuan, China. Inside they research Dark Matter, a mysterious substance that’s thought to account for approximately 85% of the matter in the universe. Surprisingly, it only took around a year to construct, which is unbelievable when it’s as far down as seven Empire State Buildings stacked on top of each other.

Gjøvik Olympic Cavern

Largest Underground Auditorium

The Gjøvik Olympic Cavern Hall is the largest underground auditorium and houses a multi-purpose venue that can be used for football, hockey, basketball, volleyball and tennis to name a few. Concerts, dining and events also take place here. It’s currently the home of local ice hockey team Gjøvik Hockey. Aside from the main venue hall, the underground building that took two years to build also has a swimming pool and a cafeteria, with the main auditorium able to hold over 5,000 spectators.

Onkalo Nuclear Repository

Deepest Nuclear Repository

Have you ever wondered where spent nuclear fuel goes? Well, it cannot simply be thrown away or recycled due to its radioactive attributes that can last for an incredibly long time. As a result, spent nuclear fuel must be stored away in a secure location such as this place, called the Onkalo Nuclear Repository. Currently, under development, this nuclear repository sits over 1,400 feet underground in Eurajoki, Finland. Set to be constructed by 2023, once fully constructed, this will be the first specifically designed final disposal site of spent nuclear fuel. Areas of it will be sealed from 2020 onwards and will not be accessible by humans for about 100,000 years!

Gotthard Base Tunnel

Longest And Deepest Tunnel

Tunnels nowadays aren’t really seen as being that amazing, until you discover the Gotthard Base Tunnel. This mega underground structure, which carves through the Swiss Alps, is not only the deepest tunnel in the world but the longest too. At its lowest point, the Gotthard Base Tunnel delves to over 7,500 feet underground, 1.5x deeper than the Grand Canyon. It has two tunnels, one for each direction that both measure a staggering 57km long, over 3km over the previous record holder, the Seikan Tunnel in Japan, and takes a full 20 minutes to get from one end to the other.

Mponeng Gold Mine

Deepest Gold Mine In The World

Similarly to tunnels, mines aren’t usually anything to get excited over, however, the Mponeng Gold Mine stands out over the rest. Not only because it is the deepest gold mine in the world at a colossal 20,000 feet (which is over 7x the height of the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world) it also has people working down there! That’s right, 20,000 feet underground there are people mining away to find gold. And it’s not a few people either, there are 5,700 people working in 150F/65C temperatures with a constant threat of earthquakes and flooding too.

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