A1 Hatfield Tunnel

We've been taking a tour of the refurbishments at the Hatfield Tunnel

It's been 5 months since the northbound carriageway of the A1 Hatfield Tunnel closed to the public as part of a two-year refurbishment project and Heart was given a tour today to see how it's all going.

 The Highways Agency are undertaking a major maintenance scheme to replace mechanical and electrical equipment that was installed when the tunnel was constructed in the early 1980s, and all safety equipment will be upgraded to comply with current European Standards. New monitoring equipment will be installed and linked to the new control systems in the Highways Agency's Regional Control Centre.

The second phase of the refurbishment started on 27th July and is expected to be completed in May 2010 and includes the northbound tunnel closed to all public access. It means that a two lane contraflow with narrow lanes and a 40 mph speed limit 24 hours a day has been operating on the southbound carriageway.

Once that work is completed, then the southbound tunnel will be closed until April 2011.

About the Tunnel.

In the spring of 1983, work started at Hatfield on the alterations to gas, electricity and water mains, sewers and telephone equipment etc.

In spring 1984, construction work commenced.

The Hatfield Tunnel opened on 10th December 1986 by the Duke of Kent.

At 1,147metre long, the tunnel is constructed east to the existing A1 between Cavendish Way and the Green Lanes Roundabout. The tunnel accommodates the full motorway formation width with a continuous separating wall along the motorway centre line.

Improvement for the Hatfield Tunnel Refurbishment project will be carried out in the following major phases:

Phase 1 - Lowering of existing emergency exit doors (11 weeks)

Phase 2 - Upgrading and the full refurbishment of the tunnel equipment in line with current standards and new legislation (40 weeks)

Phase 3 - Closure of the Southbound Bore. Complete refurbishment of the mechanical and electrical equipment (40 weeks)

Phase 4 - Finishing works to the central reservation and replacement of barriers (1 week)

What The Highways Agency will be doing

  • Works will be carried out within the existing highway boundary
  • Upgrading and the full refurbishment of the tunnel equipment in line with current standard and new legislation
  • Additional operational safety measures and introduction of passive fire protection of structure
  • Removal of existing handrails