Glatscheras Tunnel - Tunnel refurbishment works

Glatscheras Tunnel - refurbishment works

Glatscherastunnel Tunnelinstandsetzung

Glatscheras Tunnel refurbishment works


Rhätische Bahn AG
Location: Switzerland
Project time: 08/2014 - 12/2016
Executing companies: Rhomberg Bahntechnik, Sersa Group AG (consortium with Berther Bau and Industrie AG)
Contract value: 10,50 Mio. CH


The 330m long Glatscheras Tunnel is only one of many tunnels on the Swiss narrow-gauge railway line between Chur and St. Moritz. It is approx. 110 years old and mostly lined with locally sourced stone masonry.

This tunnel is the very first of many tunnels to be refurbished in a specifically designed "standardised methodology", developed by local rail operator "Rhätische Bahn".

The project involves the lowering of the tunnel floor in conjunction with increasing the tunnel profile to allow for the installation of prefabricated tunnel lining elements. These elements were delivered to site by railway wagons and installed using some bespoke manipulator to allow for a safe and fast installation process. Tunneling works were executed using both mechanical excavation as well as drill-and-blast technology.

To minimise any impact to regular train operations all of the works had to be executed overnight between 21:00 and 06:00. Therefore, specifically designed protection lining which included the overhead wiring needed to be put in place to allow safe train running operations during the day.

To allow for conventional tunneling machines to operate in the tunnel, some purpose-designed temporary slab track was installed along the complete tunnel length.