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Cavities challenging construction at Mile 6 Interchange

Wednesday, 13 March 20109, Kuching: The project team which builds the Kuching Serian Road (KSR) Mile 6 Interchange has found a large number of cavities under the ground which is posing challenges in the construction progress of the flyover.

Cavities are expected in limestone formation and hence, appropriate design and bore piling construction methods have to be executed to ensure the performance of the bore piles.

“We encountered the cavities in the limestone strata in the ground and this has affected four out of the 11 piers that we have to do. The remaining piers are not affected based on our soil studies.

“Before the pier work proceeds, we have to do the pre-boring to find out whether there is any cavity in each of the 11 piers. Cavities have to be treated by filling them with concrete before we can do the 1000mm diameter bore piling works.

“Because of this, our construction work is delayed,” LBU Project Manager for Sematan-Sungai Moyan (Works Package 02) Ir. Dahlim Mungkil said.

Ir. Dahlim added the construction work is now focused on bored piling work, which would continue until July this year.

“After the bored piling, we will move on to do other works like pile caps and columns as well as the cross-head beams,” he said, adding that the 430m interchange is expected to be completed by end of 2020.

To address the traffic congestion in the Mile 6 area, Ir. Dahlim said the traffic management team has a dedicated team of 7 personnel on site to manage and monitor traffic furniture. Temporary street lightings were put up to ensure good visibility at the work site for public and road users.

“The traffic management team has put up many plastic hoardings along the alignment as currently we are carrying out piling works at the median or centre of the interchange. The plastic hoarding is necessary to keep the construction activities out of sight from the curious public who may slow down their vehicles and contribute to the already congested stretch. It is also for safety purposes,” he said.

Two out of the four lanes in the vicinity, Ir. Dahlim further said, had to be closed to enable the construction works to be carried out.

“In place for this is we have to widen the road on both the Kuching and Serian bound routes to divert traffic. We have also implemented work for a night shift, where the project team start work from 8.30pm onwards until midnight to do concreting and premixing works,” he added.

Under Works Package 02, there are five more interchanges to be built other than Mile 6. They are Mile 4 ½, Mile 7, Mile 10, Bau and Lundu Interchanges which are in various stages of works. Samling Resources Sdn Bhd is the main contractor for this works package.