Bertha http://www.kplu.org en Seattle Tunnel Partners: Bertha Won't Be Eating Dirt Again Until Next Year http://www.kplu.org/post/seattle-tunnel-partners-bertha-wont-be-eating-dirt-again-until-next-year <p>Tunneling beneath downtown Seattle likely won’t resume for almost another year, according to Seattle Tunnel Partners, the company managing the project.</p><p>Delays have mounted in repairing Bertha, the tunneling machine that <a href="http://www.kplu.org/post/bertha-broken-not-blocked-says-wsdot">has been at a standstill with damaged parts</a> since December. &nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 22:04:55 +0000 Gabriel Spitzer 16178 at http://www.kplu.org Seattle Tunnel Partners: Bertha Won't Be Eating Dirt Again Until Next Year Bertha Rescue Plan On Hold While Archaeologists Check Soil For Sites http://www.kplu.org/post/bertha-rescue-plan-hold-while-archaeologists-check-soil-sites <p>The plan to dig a shaft 12 stories deep to fix <a href="http://www.kplu.org/term/bertha">Bertha</a>, the Seattle tunnel boring machine, has been put on hold while archaeologists&nbsp;make sure crews won’t dig through important historical sites.&nbsp;</p><p>On Thursday, workers started boring approximately 60 holes, each about as wide as a grapefruit, and digging as deep as 40 feet&nbsp;down through layers of Seattle's floor, which, at the moment, is also Bertha's ceiling.&nbsp;</p><p> Fri, 14 Mar 2014 19:27:04 +0000 Rae Ellen Bichell 14828 at http://www.kplu.org Bertha Rescue Plan On Hold While Archaeologists Check Soil For Sites Six-Month Delay 'Optimistic' For Seattle Tunnel http://www.kplu.org/post/six-month-delay-optimistic-seattle-tunnel <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">An official for the contractor boring the Seattle Highway 99 tunnel says a six month delay in the stalled construction is a "slightly optimistic" forecast.</p><p> Fri, 28 Feb 2014 23:56:19 +0000 The Associated Press 14296 at http://www.kplu.org Six-Month Delay 'Optimistic' For Seattle Tunnel Seattle Tunnel Builders To Dig Shaft In Front Of Bertha For Repairs http://www.kplu.org/post/seattle-tunnel-builders-dig-shaft-front-bertha-repairs <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">The Washington state Transportation Department says that, as expected, the contractors digging a highway tunnel under downtown Seattle will repair a seal system on the tunneling machine by digging a shaft in front of it.</p><p> Sat, 22 Feb 2014 08:22:49 +0000 The Associated Press 13975 at http://www.kplu.org Seattle Tunnel Builders To Dig Shaft In Front Of Bertha For Repairs Expert: Bertha's Woes Are No 'Big Dig' http://www.kplu.org/post/expert-berthas-woes-are-no-big-dig <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The prospect of taking the State Route 99 tunneling machine known as Bertha offline for as much as half a year is not good news for the company operating it. But one Seattle tunneling expert says it could be worse.</span></p><p>“It’s really a problem with the machine itself. I think it’s something that can be repaired,” said the University of Washington’s Joseph Wartman. “And I think in a couple of years when the tunnel is open, people will have forgotten about this.”</p><p> Tue, 18 Feb 2014 20:39:12 +0000 Gabriel Spitzer 13776 at http://www.kplu.org Expert: Bertha's Woes Are No 'Big Dig' Contractor: Evidence Could Put Taxpayers On The Hook For Bertha Cost Overruns http://www.kplu.org/post/contractor-evidence-could-put-taxpayers-hook-bertha-cost-overruns <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Washington transportation officials and the private contractor operating the tunneling machine known as Bertha disagree on what’s holding up progress on the Highway 99 tunnel project.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Neither had definitive answers, but appearing together&nbsp;Tuesday&nbsp;at a news conference, it became clear they’re leaning toward conflicting theories.</span></p><p> Wed, 12 Feb 2014 00:17:40 +0000 Gabriel Spitzer 13531 at http://www.kplu.org Contractor: Evidence Could Put Taxpayers On The Hook For Bertha Cost Overruns WSDOT: Fixing Bertha 'Will Take Months' http://www.kplu.org/post/wsdot-fixing-bertha-will-take-months <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The state contractor hasn’t yet decided how to fix the broken seal near Bertha’s bearing, but “either way, this process will take months,” said the state Department of Transportation late Monday.</span></p><p> Tue, 11 Feb 2014 05:24:21 +0000 Martha Kang 13493 at http://www.kplu.org WSDOT: Fixing Bertha 'Will Take Months' Bertha: Broken, Not Blocked, Says WSDOT http://www.kplu.org/post/bertha-broken-not-blocked-says-wsdot <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">R</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">emember that big steel pipe —&nbsp;eight inches wide, part of an old well?</span></p><p>The Washington State Department of Transportation never actually accused that pipe of blocking Bertha, but it was <a href="http://www.kplu.org/post/whats-blocking-bertha-probably-steel-pipe-state-put-there-wsdot-says">definitely a prime suspect</a>.</p><p>But on Friday, WSDOT said the pipe isn’t, and never was, the problem.</p><p> Fri, 07 Feb 2014 22:27:12 +0000 Gabriel Spitzer 13392 at http://www.kplu.org Bertha: Broken, Not Blocked, Says WSDOT Seattle Tunneling Operations On Hold Yet Again http://www.kplu.org/post/seattle-tunneling-operations-hold-yet-again <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Seattle's massive tunneling operation is on hold yet again due to ongoing problems with the world's largest boring machine.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>After a seven-week stoppage, crews restarted the tunneling machine earlier this week and moved it forward about two feet. Washington state's Department of Transportation said Friday that the machinery showed above-normal temperature readings when that movement occurred.</p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 17:11:33 +0000 The Associated Press 13085 at http://www.kplu.org Seattle Tunneling Operations On Hold Yet Again Tunneling Machine Bertha Moves Ahead 2 Feet http://www.kplu.org/post/tunneling-machine-bertha-moves-ahead-2-feet <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">A Washington Transportation Department spokeswoman says the giant machine digging a highway tunnel under downtown Seattle has advanced two more feet, far enough to allow crews to build the next concrete ring of the tunnel.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>Tuesday's progress was the first for the machine in nearly two months, s<a href="http://www.kplu.org/post/whats-blocking-bertha-probably-steel-pipe-state-put-there-wsdot-says">ince it stalled Dec. 6</a> some 60 feet underground.</p> Wed, 29 Jan 2014 05:54:14 +0000 The Associated Press 12992 at http://www.kplu.org Tunneling Machine Bertha Moves Ahead 2 Feet 3-Foot Chunk Stuck In Bertha, Seattle Tunnel Machine http://www.kplu.org/post/3-foot-chunk-stuck-bertha-seattle-tunnel-machine <p><span style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;">Crews have found a hard object more than 3 feet wide lodged in the tunneling machine that's currently stalled 60 feet under the city of Seattle, officials said Wednesday.</span><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;" /><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;" /><span style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;">The large object is either a boulder or piece of concrete that got stuck within the massive spokes of the machine called Bertha, said state Department of Transportation spokeswoman Laura Newborn. Crews have also found metal and plastic piping in the machine but have not concluded what exactly has been causing problems for the machine.</span><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;" /><br style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;" /><span style="color: rgb(52, 52, 52); font-family: Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; line-height: 16.690908432006836px;">"None of these things in and of themselves is enough to slow the machine down," Newborn said.</span> Wed, 22 Jan 2014 19:05:39 +0000 Mike Baker 12772 at http://www.kplu.org 3-Foot Chunk Stuck In Bertha, Seattle Tunnel Machine Senator: Seattle Should Pay For Tunnel Cost Overruns http://www.kplu.org/post/senator-seattle-should-pay-tunnel-cost-overruns <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">A leading Republican in the state Senate says Seattle taxpayers should foot the bill for any potential cost overruns on the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement project.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>The machine digging a tunnel to replace the elevated highway along Seattle's waterfront has been stuck for more than a month, raising concerns that more funds will be needed for that $1.4 billion project.</p> Thu, 09 Jan 2014 18:32:59 +0000 Chris Grygiel 12423 at http://www.kplu.org Senator: Seattle Should Pay For Tunnel Cost Overruns Crews Clearing Path For Bertha, The Blocked Boring Machine http://www.kplu.org/post/crews-clearing-path-bertha-blocked-boring-machine <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">The Washington Transportation Department says crews have completed the second of four planned exploratory 5-foot-wide shafts being dug in front of a massive machine that got stuck last month while boring a tunnel under downtown Seattle.</p><p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">Spokeswoman Laura Newborn says the shafts are being dug in hopes of identifying any metal in the path of the machine known as Bertha and removing as much of any such obstruction as possible.</p><p> Wed, 08 Jan 2014 17:44:16 +0000 The Associated Press 12379 at http://www.kplu.org Crews Clearing Path For Bertha, The Blocked Boring Machine What's Blocking Bertha? Probably A Steel Pipe The State Put There, WSDOT Says http://www.kplu.org/post/whats-blocking-bertha-probably-steel-pipe-state-put-there-wsdot-says <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A steel pipe that the state Department of Transportation itself had installed back in 2002 sits in the way of Bertha underneath Seattle,&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">WSDOT</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;said on Friday, and it may be the cause of the weeks-long work stoppage.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">An inspection on Jan. 2 “showed an 8-inch-diameter steel pipe protruding through one of the many openings in the </span>cutterhead<span style="line-height: 1.5;">,” </span>WSDOT<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> said, adding the agency had installed the pipe, a well casing, in the wake of the 2001 </span>Nisqually<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> quake to better understand groundwater flow.&nbsp;</span></p><p> Fri, 03 Jan 2014 22:00:49 +0000 Martha Kang & Gabriel Spitzer 12260 at http://www.kplu.org What's Blocking Bertha? Probably A Steel Pipe The State Put There, WSDOT Says What's Blocking Bertha? Mystery Object Halts Tunnel Drilling http://www.kplu.org/post/whats-blocking-bertha-mystery-object-halts-tunnel-drilling <p style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;">The Transportation Department and contractors building a highway tunnel under downtown Seattle are trying to find out what has blocked their tunnel boring machine.</p><div style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Verdana, Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif, Geneva; font-size: 15.454545021057129px; line-height: 15px;"><p>The machine called Bertha ran into something Friday and was shut down Saturday about 1,000 feet from the start.</p> Wed, 11 Dec 2013 19:53:14 +0000 The Associated Press 11605 at http://www.kplu.org What's Blocking Bertha? Mystery Object Halts Tunnel Drilling