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First Sydney Metro project to use specially designed tunnel boring machines 


A worker standing on a construction site of a TBM A worker standing on a construction site of a TBM
A TBM in the construction site A TBM in the construction site
A TBM ready to start tunelling A TBM ready to start tunelling

A third tunnel boring machine (TBM) has been launched for the Sydney Metro - Western Sydney Airport project at Orchard Hills in a major milestone towards the delivery of world-class metro services. 

This is the first Sydney Metro project to use earth pressure balance TBMs, which are designed to support the ground as they excavate through shale rock and clay along the northern section of the line. 

TBM Catherine will carve out one of the 4.3-kilometre tunnels from Orchard Hills to the new metro station site at St Marys. 

The TBM is named after Catherine White who has worked tirelessly to advocate against violence towards women in the Blacktown area.  

TBM Catherine joins TBMs Eileen and Peggy which are well into their journeys to build the 5.5-kilometre southern twin metro tunnels after launching at Airport Business Park towards the Aerotropolis station site this year.  Each TBM will excavate about 120 metres a week.

A fourth and final TBM for the project will launch at Orchard Hills in the coming months to build the tunnel alongside TBM Catherine. 

The new metro line is a city-shaping project that will provide communities with easier access to job hubs, commercial and education facilities, and connections to Sydney’s wider public transport network.

The Sydney Metro – Western Sydney Airport line will be operational when Western Sydney International Airport opens for passenger services, with an expected travel time of 15 minutes from St Marys metro station to Airport Terminal Station and a further five minutes to Aerotropolis Station. 

For more information about the project, visit 

About Catherine White 

Catherine has worked tirelessly to promote social justice and gender equality and is a relentless advocate against violence towards women, directly impacting the lives of countless women. Catherine managed the Women's Activities and Self Help House (WASH) House from 2003 to 2013.

She has worked in many roles in the Blacktown Local Government Area since 1995, including for the Blacktown Women’s and Girls’ Health Centre. Catherine won the Blacktown Woman of the Year Award in 2012 for her ongoing advocacy work, and her contribution to helping many local women and children escape domestic violence. 


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