MORE than 200 earthmoving machines are rolling onto the Western Sydney Airport site as the next phase of work begins.
Western Sydney Airport executive general manager – airport infrastructure Jim Tragotsalos said major earthworks would see around 25m cubic metres of earth moved to make way for construction of the Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport terminal, runway, roads and rail.
“This is an exciting day not just for Western Sydney, but for the nation, as this transformational project marks its biggest milestone yet,” Mr Tragotsalos said.
“In total, we’re moving enough earth to fill around 10,000 Olympic swimming pools.”
Since initial earthworks started in September 2018, around one million worker hours have been recorded on the project and 1.8m cubic metres of earth moved around the site.
Initial earthworks also involved realigning 1.6km of Badgerys Creek Road, which is to become one of the gateways to the Airport when it opens in 2026.
“On other projects these achievements would be showstoppers, but for Western Sydney International initial earthworks was just the beginning, covering only 6% of the 1,780-hectare site,” Mr Tragotsalos said.
“Major earthworks will see us moving up to one million cubic metres of earth a month, working across 67% of the site, which is the entire footprint of the first stage of the Airport.”
“We’ll have hundreds of workers and more than 200 scrapers, excavators, graders, dump trucks and dozers, including some of the world’s biggest machines, on site getting to work on this mammoth task.”
Mr Tragotsalos said they needed to flatten “what is a very hilly site”. “The difference between the highest and lowest points is equivalent to a 12-storey building – so we definitely have our work cut out for us,” he said.