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Bertha back at it: Tunnel machine restart dig with new teeth

STP says they expect to stop two more times for maintenance before they reach the north portal, Bertha’s final destination and the end point for the new tunnel

It has been almost a month since Bertha took a break after tunneling 3,088 feet in order to get a scheduled maintenance check. Thirty-three new steel cutting teeth later, she’s back up and burrowing underneath Seattle.

Per WSDOT, Bertha is currently about 120 feet below Spring Street and heading north toward First Avenue. She’ll be diving a little bit and getting more than 200 feet below the surface near Virginia Street.

STP says they expect to stop two more times for maintenance before they reach the north portal, Bertha’s final destination and the end point for the new tunnel.

Bertha has now made one-third of her total journey and ever since it was restarted earlier this year, things have gone smoothly. The boring machine is keeping a pace of 40 feet per day and is still expected to finish the job early next year.

Then, we all get to squabble about the extra costs accrued.