Building NorthConnex: Australia’s Largest Tunnelled Motorway

by | Jan 16, 2018

Reading Time: 3 minutes

(As seen in Dirt Digger issue:36)

The NorthConnex project, to be completed in 2019, will deliver twin nine kilometre tunnels linking the M1 Pacific Motorway at Wahroonga to the Hills M2 Motorway at West Pennant Hills in Sydney, NSW. Built by a joint venture between Lendlease Engineering and Bouygues Construction Australia (LLBJV), early work started in February 2015 and the first tunneling work started in April 2016.

The scale of the NorthConnex project, and the densely-populated region in which it is situated, presented a number of unique challenges throughout design, surveying and construction. LLBJV found traditional data management tools had substantial gaps in functionality and flexibility that would limit the way data could be used and managed on the project. Selecting 12d Synergy allowed LLBJV the flexibility to streamline the collection, management and distribution of large volumes of data and efficiently manage their data through tailored workflows and, most importantly, robust file synchronisation.

Furthermore, survey managers were able to control the dissemination of updated data from the Central Data Model (CDM) across the project. End-users were relieved of the need to perform manual updates or constantly chase the latest data, instead being automatically notified when updates to the CDM were available. Centralising the update of the CDM also reduced network traffic, eliminated duplicated downloads and allowed surveyors to focus on more critical parts of their role. The survey managers created specific synchronisation tasks within 12d Synergy, assigning them to particular contacts or team roles, and linking the updated CDM data to the task. As users completed the download tasks, the manager was able to track the progress of distributing the data across their team.

These capabilities have proven particularly significant due to the sheer number of surveyors required throughout the duration of the NorthConnex project. The surveyors, from a wide range of backgrounds, had a high variation in skill level, survey coding standards, file and model naming conventions, data management procedures, and plotting and reporting methods. 12d Synergy provided an innovative and effective way of turning a diverse surveying workforce into a cohesive team ensuring consistently high-quality and time-efficient output by all.

By integrating 12d Synergy as the key component for data management within their CDM, LLBJV were able to safeguard the data being used and generated during each phase of the project. Previously disparate processes were streamlined, boosting the productivity of its surveyors and the NorthConnex project as a whole.


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Mitch helps engineering and construction teams achieve success through the adoption of world class common data environments. Mitch joined 12d Synergy in 2017 and now champions our growth across Australia. Mitch helps engineering and construction teams achieve success through the adoption of world class common data environments. Mitch is also a sports fanatic and self-confessed cricket tragic.