Project Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Deep Tunnel Storm Water System

A groundbreaking tunnel for sustainable living in Dubai

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Six Construct, in a joint venture with PORR, won its first ever Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) tunnel project in Dubai.

This prestigious project was awarded by Dubai Municipality, and holds an estimated contract value of AED 1.3 billion with a construction period of 1,095 days. The objective of the project is to collect and convey groundwater and storm water runoff from the Dubai World Central area (about 135 km2) and adjacent communities (about 245 km2) which will be discharged into the Gulf.

Dubai Municipality has a strong vision for Dubai to be smart and sustainable, and the Deep Tunnel Storm Water System we are building provides the infrastructure needed to serve Dubai's growing residential and business communities.

The drainage system of the tunnel needs to be strong enough to cope with increasing urbanisation, severe rainfall and high-level groundwater. This groundbreaking tunnel will tackle both rainwater and groundwater, and will drain almost 40% of the entire urban area of Dubai and including the flagship project Dubai South, with Al Maktoum International Airport, the Expo 2020 site and several other emerging developments.

The project consists of a 10km tunnel of 11.05m boring diameter, at 30-45m below ground. The purpose of the tunnel is to drain storm water from the Jebel Ali area to the sea. The tunnel will have 4 deep shafts (14-20m diameter, 40 to 45m deep), to connect the connection chambers with the tunnel. 4 connection chambers (one at each drop shaft) will collect/connect water from the storm water network to the shafts. 2 micro-tunnels (3m diameter / 380m long each) will be built below Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed road and minor MEP works will take place which include Penstock valves, electrical works, flow monitoring, among others.

Our team at the PORR-Six Construct joint venture are dedicated to completing this project on time and to the specifications of Dubai Municipality. We are extremely proud to be working on our first TBM project in Dubai, building on our long history with Dubai Municipality.

Christoph Duempelmann
Project Director

Two tunnel boring machines are set to arrive from China in October 2018.

On Monday 29 July 2018, representatives of the PORR-Six Construct Joint Venture signed the “Factory Acceptance Certificates” together with China Railway Engineering Equipment Group (CREG) following detailed and successful tests by PORR tunneling specialists on the two completely assembled TBM´s in the manufacturer´s facilities in China.

The joint venture was awarded the tunnel contract by Dubai Municipality on 1 October 2017 and it placed orders for two EPB TBM’s with CREG in November last year. The TBMs are expected to arrive in October 2018, and the entire project is on track to be completed in time for the Expo 2020 in Dubai.

Project details

Project name

Deep Tunnel Storm Water System

Area(s) of expertise


Contract type

Design & Build


Dubai, United Arab Emirates


Six Construct

External partner(s)



Dubai Municipality

Building Period

2017 - 2019

Total value

$ 354 million


Dubai World Central area (about 135 km2) and adjacent communities (about 245 km2)


10km tunnel of 11.05m boring diameter at 30-45m below ground.

Precast Factory - Storage Yard

Precast Factory - Production Hall

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