Länsimetro’s second phase achieves goals for 2018 – excavation contracts remained below the budget, construction work began on schedule

In 2018, work progressed from excavation to construction on Länsimetro’s Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section. Construction contracts were tendered out in several stages over the year, and construction began on schedule at five stations and on the rail line. The construction of the Sammalvuori depot has progressed to work on the building services. In addition to the schedule targets, also the cost targets were achieved. Excavation contracts remained approximately EUR 14 million below the budget.

During the year, the project adopted a situation management model, so called war room concept,  which is new in the construction industry. In this model, project management works in a so-called big room, monitoring the progress of planning, acquisitions, the permit process and implementation as well as occupational safety and cooperation in each construction site, i.e. the stations, the rail line and the depot. Any data from the construction sites and the various sources is processed and analysed on interactive displays. Measurement of the project’s internal communications and cooperation began in the summer. A training system, the Metro Academy, was created to support training and the exchange of information during the project. These development measures brought Länsimetro the Project of the Year award granted by Project Management Association Finland in October.

–       The second phase is now going full speed ahead. We have taken full advantage of the experiences gained and lessons learned during the first phase by revising our management model, introducing a situation management model and investing in communications. Construction-related procurements remained within budget. Excavation contracts ran smoothly and, as a whole, remained approximately EUR 14 million below the budget, says Länsimetro Oy’s CEO Ville Saksi.

Other goals were also achieved. During the year, a total of 13,400 construction and production plans were completed. The key building permits needed for starting the construction work were obtained from the construction supervision authorities. Phase two includes a total of 24 subcontracts, 17 of which were tendered out during the year. The tendering process for the contracts that will be carried out later will continue until the summer of 2019. Occupational safety remained at a good level.

In March 2018, the City of Espoo approved an adjusted project plan for the Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section. The revised cost estimate for the entire project is EUR 1,159 million. The aim is to hand over the seven kilometres of rail line and five stations and depot to the operator, Helsinki City Transport, during 2023.

Further information:

Ville Saksi, CEO, Länsimetro Oy, tel. +358 (0)40 823 2086, ville.saksi(at)lansimetro.fi



Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department to test the operation of smoke curtains between Finnoo and Matinkylä

Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department will be testing the operation of the smoke curtains installed for the duration of the construction works and the effectiveness of smoke extractors between Matinkylä and Finnoo at 8.00 pm on Thursday, 20 December. The tests will take approximately two hours.

There may be rescue vehicles on site during the tests, and artificial smoke may drift out of the tunnel via the shaft on Suomenlahdentie. The smoke is harmless, and sightings of it do not need to be reported to emergency services.

Smoke curtains are used to increase site safety during the construction works.

Further information:

Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department, Project Manager Tuukka Tuuli: +358 (0)50 329 8261, tuukka.tuuli@espoo.fi

Art as part of the architecture also in the second phase

Art is planned to be included in the architecture of five new metro stations of the West Metro. Artwork will be created as a result of cooperation between architects and artists. The various forms of art will increase the comfort and identity of stations.

Art in various forms will be included in the five stations on the Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section of the West Metro. Jaakko Niemelä is the Art Coordinator in the project. His task is to ensure that the art project progresses within the agreed schedule and that there is smooth cooperation between the various parties. Art selections are made by a work group that consists of representatives from the Espoo Museum of Modern Art, the Cultural Unit of the City of Espoo, West Metro, and station architects and the principal architectural designer.

Within the art project, architecture will determine the main themes at stations.  The aim is to have art in various forms at stations; light, sound, paintings and sculpture. Artwork must also blend into the architecture of a station and be easily accessible for maintenance.

“Architects and the principal designers of stations are essential in the implementation and artists must listen to them carefully. On the one hand, specified themes for stations restrict implementation but on the other hand, it will also be easier for artists to work on a specified set of themes,” Niemelä states.

Art will increase comfort at stations but it also serves the overall design of stations – it will make navigation easier: when a passenger sees a unique piece of art from the train window and knows which station they are at with the help of the artwork.

Currently, the focus is on finding suitable art forms and themes for each station as well as locations for the artwork. “Our goal is to create an entity through cooperation so that architecture and art support each other or form interesting contrasts,” says Niemelä.

Selected artwork and artists will be published in the early part of 2019.

Further information:

Artist, West Metro project Art Coordinator Jaakko Niemelä, tel. +358 (0)50 598 4201, jaakko.niemela(at)nic.fi

Länsimetro Oy, Communications Director, Satu Linkola, tel. +358 (0)46 877 3392, satu.linkola(at)lansimetro.fi

Länsimetro’s Christmas tree in Soukka – Christmas lights switch-on on 16 December

Länsimetro is taking part in Espoonlahti Parish’s Christmas tree campaign for the second year in a row. Espoonlahti Parish is setting up an arboretum of Christmas trees at Soukka Chapel and enlisting local organisations to decorate them. In addition to Länsimetro, other organisations with their own Christmas tree in Soukka include Espoonlahti Scout Groups, the Mannerheim League for Child Welfare and K-Supermarket Soukka. A total of 17 organisations will contribute to decorating this year’s trees.

“It is important for us to have good relationships with organisations that operate within the area affected by our construction works, and our cooperation with Espoonlahti Parish has always run smoothly. This is a nice, festive campaign that we are thrilled to be a part of again”, says Länsimetro’s Communications Manager Saija Räsänen.

The West Metro station in Soukka will be located just 300 metres from the chapel. In fact, all the stations that will be built during the second phase of the project are within Espoonlahti Parish, and the church will therefore benefit from the handy access that the West Metro will provide for its followers who live further away.

The arboretum will be set up on 14 December, and the official switch-on ceremony at the chapel is scheduled for Sunday, 16 December. The trees will bring cheer to passers-by outside the chapel until 23 December, when they – and their decorations – will be donated to families in need. The organisations responsible for decorating the trees are free to choose their own theme – Länsimetro’s tree will be adorned with orange baubles.

Response to letters to the editor: longer platforms not a feasible solution

Several members of the public have written letters to the editor of the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper proposing ways to ease rush-hour congestion on the metro (Hannu Valta on 16 November, Tapio Pento on 27 November and Kauko Korpela on 30 November). Ensuring the high standard and sufficient capacity of metro services is vital for us. However, lengthening the platforms at West Metro stations or operating services using longer trains are not feasible solutions to the problem.

The current metro stations are not just tracks and a platform in between but a complex entity consisting of more than 50 systems. The ability to evacuate underground stations efficiently is a key consideration. The emergency exits (stairs and escalators) of the current West Metro stations have been designed so as to enable the safe evacuation of two full 90-metre trains arriving at the station simultaneously. Operating 135-metre trains at the stations would require a 50% increase in the emergency exits’ capacity. This would require major structural changes, and many stations would need to be practically rebuilt.

Lengthening platforms and operating services with longer trains would also require redesigning the stations’ technical facilities, fire doors, crossovers, points, signage, etc. This would be a laborious process that would probably require discontinuing the operation of metro services for a period of several years. The solution would be extremely challenging and expensive to implement.

However, there are other ways to increase the standard of service and capacity. More frequent services can be operated if passenger numbers increase. Helsinki City Transport, the Helsinki Regional Transport Authority and Länsimetro Oy are about to begin a feasibility study on the best way to increase the number of services. One way to increase the number of services would be to adopt more sophisticated traffic control systems. Automation has been used successfully to increase the capacity of underground systems around the world.

Another solution in addition to increasing the number of services could be to extend the line that currently terminates in Tapiola further west. The Cities of Espoo and Helsinki, together with the Helsinki Regional Transport Authority, are exploring this option as well as the possibility of improving the standard of service by building a new turnaround track to the west.

In the short term, congestion on the metro can be eased by less drastic measures such as supplementary bus services. The Helsinki Regional Transport Authority has been operating a bus service between Kamppi and Espoonlahti since October.

Tero Anttila, Director of Public Transport Planning Department, Helsinki Regional Transport Authority

Ville Lehmuskoski, Managing Director, Helsinki City Transport

Ville Saksi, CEO, Länsimetro Oy


Work begins on Espoonlahti station

The construction works of the West Metro Espoonlahti station will begin in December 2018. The contract is being undertaken by  SRV.

The contract includes the construction of Espoonlahti underground metro service tunnel, its entrances on Espoonlahdentori and Solmutori, a bus terminal adjoining the Lippulaiva shopping centre and a service tunnel and connecting tunnels to the station.

The first step is to set up a base for the works at Tähystäjänkatu 4. The construction of the station begins with the platform level’s framework, consisting of concrete walls, pillars and arches. The framework construction begins from the bottom up, advancing floor by floor towards the surface.

During construction, there will be an increase in construction traffic around the mouths of the shafts and access tunnels. Otherwise, construction will cause no major changes in the surrounding environment.

During the construction phase, quiet work may be done around the clock, but noisy work may be done according to the noise permit issued by the Espoo Environment Agency:

  • between 7 am and 6 pm from Monday to Friday
  • between 6 pm and 10 pm from Monday to Friday and between 9 am and 6 pm on Saturdays, provided that the resulting noise levels in nearby residential properties do not exceed 35 dB

The West Metro’s Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section is due to be built between 2019 and 2022. The building phase will include five stations, the track and the Sammalvuori depot, as well as the installation of various systems. Work will be handed over by the contractors in 2022– 2023, followed by joint use tests and official inspections. The operator, Helsinki City Transport, will take over the stations and the track in 2023 in preparation for launching passenger transport.

We will tell you more about the Espoonlahti construction project in a resident event on Monday, 10 December 2018 at 17.30-18.30 at Espoonlahti Church (Kipparinkatu 8). Welcome!

Further information:

West Metro feedback phone number (Mon–Fri, 9 am – 3 pm): +358 50 377 3700

SRV contact person: Project Manager  Juho Varelius, juho.varelius(at)srv.fi

Contractor on-duty phone line (24/7): +358 40 637 5377

Rescue services’ safety drill along the Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section on 3 December

Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department is planning a safety drill along the West Metro rail line at Hyljetie 6 from 9.30 am on Monday, 3 December. The drill will take approximately two hours.

The aim of the safety drill is to practise evacuating the tunnels and to test the effectiveness of rescue services’, Länsimetro’s and the contractor’s joint procedures. The drill will be the twelfth safety drill along the Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section and the 45th during the entire West Metro project.

The participants will include Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department, the contractor, Graniittirakennus Kallio Oy, and the West Metro project team. The drill scenario will be a fire in a tunnel between Matinkylä and Finnoo. Artificial smoke will be used during the drill, which may drift out of the tunnel via the shaft on Suomenlahdentie. The smoke is harmless, and sightings of it do not need to be reported to emergency services.

The public are advised to avoid the area if possible.

Further information on the drill:

Juhan-Petteri Laakso, Fire Foreman, Länsi-Uusimaa Rescue Department, tel. +358 (0)40 532 7334, juhan-petteri.laakso@espoo.fi

Satu Linkola, Communications Director, West Metro, tel. +358 (0)46 877 3392, satu.linkola@lansimetro.fi

International expertise for the second phase – smoke extraction fans to be supplied by Talleres Zitrón S.A.

Smoke extraction fans for the Matinkylä-Kivenlahti section will be supplied by Spanish manufacturer Talleres Zitrón S.A. The total contract price is EUR 1.8 million.

Smoke extraction fans are used in the event of fire to exhaust smoke from underground areas through smoke zone routes to open air. Smoke extraction fans are installed on vertical shafts in the metro line and in the east and west ends of stations. The second-phase metro line and stations will have a total of 15 extraction fans. Talleres Zitrón also supplied a total of 32 extraction fans for the first phase of the West Metro from Ruoholahti to Matinkylä.

Operation of the smoke extraction fans was tested on the first phase of the West Metro by means such as passenger rescue drills before metro service was begun. The 52 different systems of the West Metro guarantee passenger safety at all times, including emergencies. High-performance smoke extraction fans exhaust smoke quickly through the correct routes to ensure that passengers can be evacuated safely.  In the West Metro, the movement of passengers between tunnels has been facilitated by, for example, constructing fire compartmented connecting tunnels in intervals of some 150 meters and by equipping both tunnels with prefabricated concrete units whose covers that serve as emergency exits.

Talleres Zitrón supplies smoke extraction fans for demanding applications, such as the metro projects in London, Milan and Rome. The company has supplied extraction fans to some 100 metro systems around the world.  The first smoke extraction fans will be delivered to Kivenlahti in the summer of 2019.

The second phase of the West Metro is estimated to be completed in 2023. This year, work has progressed from excavation to construction.  The project management contractors for all five stations and the rail line have been selected, and construction will begin at all stations by the end of the year. On the rail line, some 360 supporting wall elements have already been installed over a distance of 1.5 kilometres. The tendering of subcontracts will continue until summer 2019. At the Sammalvuori depot, work has already progressed to technical building services.

Construction on the stations and rail line will continue until 2022, after which the project will proceed to the commissioning phase. This includes the acceptance of contracts, extensive testing and regulatory approvals. Länsimetro’s share of the project will be completed once the metro is handed over to the operator to begin preparations for passenger traffic.

More information:
Länsimetro Oy, Technical Director Raimo Kaunismäki, tel.  050 390 6670

Photo: Talleres Zitrón S.A

SRV selected as constructor for Espoonlahti metro station

SRV has won the project management contract for the Espoonlahti station on the Matinkylä–Kivenlahti section of the West Metro. The total contract price is approximately EUR 48 million. All project management contractors for the second phase have now been selected, and construction will be underway at each station by the end of the year.

In Espoonlahti, the contract includes the construction of the underground metro service tunnel, its entrances on Espoonlahdentori and Solmutori, a bus terminal adjoining the Lippulaiva shopping centre and a service tunnel and connecting tunnels to the station.

“The Espoonlahti metro contract is a natural continuation to other contracts carried out by SRV for the metro. At this site, we will be able to demonstrate our expertise in the management and implementation of demanding projects. In 2016, SRV oversaw the completion of the Koivusaari metro station as the project management contractor. In addition, SRV has previously carried out the station and tunnel excavation and reinforcement work for the Otaniemi and Kaitaa metro stations of the West Metro,” says Antti Raunemaa, Head of Unit at SRV.

Construction of the second phase is on schedule and within the cost estimate. This year, work has progressed from excavation to construction. Work is already underway in Kivenlahti, Soukka, Kaitaa, Finnoo and on the rail line. Construction of the Espoonlahti station will also begin by the end of the year. At the Sammalvuori depot, work has already progressed to technical building services.

“Tendering is now complete for all major contracts for the second phase. We have found experienced contractors for each of the stations and the rail line. The market situation has remained good, competition has been sufficient and as a whole, procurement has been carried out smoothly. Tendering for the subcontracts will continue until spring 2019,” says Ville Saksi, CEO of Länsimetro Oy.

In March 2018, the City of Espoo reviewed its project plan for the second phase from 2012. The revised cost estimate for the entire project is EUR 1,159 million. The aim is to hand over the seven kilometres of rail line and five stations and depot to the operator, Helsinki City Transport, during 2023.

Further information:

Ville Saksi, CEO, Länsimetro Oy, tel.  +358 (0)40 823 2086, ville.saksi@lansimetro.fi

Juha Toimela, Deputy CEO, SRV, tel. +358 (0)40 594 5473, juha.toimela@srv.fi

Antti Raunemaa, Head of Unit, SRV, tel. +358 (0)40 564 4105, antti.raunemaa@srv.fi

Concrete cutting in the Matinkylä service tunnel on 29 and 30 November 2018

Works involving the cutting of the ground-supported floor of the Matinkylä service tunnel will take place between 9.00 am and 3.00 pm on 29 and 30 November in both smoke extraction shafts. The works relate to the development of the Tynnyripuisto area.

Noise from the works may reach the platforms and nearby properties via the smoke extraction shafts.

We apologise for the inconvenience.

Further information:

Perttu Tavia, Project Manager, West Metro: +358 (0)50 378 5164, perttu.tavia@lansimetro.fi