Sustainable Tunnelling – An infrastructure operator’s, planner’s, contractor’s and scientist’s perspective.

Roman Heissenberger, Urs Grunicke, Jürgen Raschendofer, Clemens Holzer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleTransferpeer-review


Sustainability is a guiding principle for political, economic and ecological action, which in companies, societies and countries all over the world, is based on the following three pillars: ecology, economy and social aspects. With the associated worldwide efforts to reduce emissions, this topic has also arrived in the construction industry in general and thus in tunnel construction in particular. In addition to the actual planning, construction, use and maintenance of mined structures, tunnel builders certainly have a special role to play, since the creation of underground structures relieves overground structures and can also change living space for the better. However, the influences and impact must always be considered in the overall context of all three pillars of sustainability – and in our fast-paced times, this requires a considerable change in mindset as well as a clear change and expansion of the assessment standards. The following article draws a current picture of “sustainable tunnelling” on the basis of four sub-sections that describe selected tasks and approaches from the perspective of operators, planners, the construction industry and science as a basis for discussion.

Translated title of the contributionNachhaltigkeit im Tunnelbau – aus Sicht des Betreibers, des Planers, der Bauindustrie und der Wissenschaft
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)811-820
Number of pages9
JournalGeomechanics and tunnelling
Issue number6
Early online date8 Dec 2022
Publication statusPublished - 8 Dec 2022

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