Local workers are ramping up production of the concrete segments that will form the walls of the eight-kilometre Forrestfield-Airport Link tunnels.
A warehouse near the tunnelling site was transformed into the pre-cast facility so the concrete tunnel components could be made locally, creating jobs across the supply chain in Western Australia.
The Forrestfield-Airport Link's pre-cast concrete facility opened in June, and 60 workers will soon be producing up to 132 concrete segments a day.
There will be six unique segments produced at the plant, which fit together to form a single, waterproof ring.
About 9,000 of the rings will be needed to build the twin rail tunnels that will eventually link the eastern foothills with the Perth central business district.
Concrete is produced at the facility, cast into segments, set and then taken about two kilometres down the road to the site of the future Forrestfield Station.
The concrete segments are fed into the tunnel boring machines, which use hydraulic lifters to fit the pieces in to place as it bores through the earth.
TBM Grace, named after a local schoolgirl, was launched to much fanfare last month, while TBM Sandy will start its underground journey in September.
Meanwhile, construction of the Airport Central and Belmont train stations along the new rail route is well under way.
The Forrestfield-Airport Link project is jointly funded by the State ($1.37 billion) and Federal ($490 million) Governments.
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"I'm very happy we've been able to create these local jobs - part of the 2,000 which will be generated over the life of the project - for the benefit of WA workers.
"The Forrestfield-Airport Link is part of this Government's METRONET plan which will transform this city."
Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti:
"These 4.5-tonne concrete segments are the very bones of Perth's longest rail tunnel.
"Once they are demoulded, these tunnel segments are loaded on to specialised multi-service vehicles at the Forrestfield site, driven into the excavated tunnel and slotted in to place by the high-tech tunnel boring machines.
"Creating the individually cast segments is a highly precise process of cleaning the moulds, placing the segment reinforcement, concreting, curing, demoulding, waterproofing and testing.
"This ensures the segments are durable and strong enough to enable trains to run through them for many decades to come."
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