Waterway Protection Tunnel one step closer to operational

February 16, 2022

The Waterway Protection Tunnel crossed a major milestone last week on the way to becoming operational this spring.

Installation of a 12-inch concrete liner inside the 4-mile tunnel was completed February 11. It was done in short sections pouring the concrete around 30-foot-long circular metal frames that were repeatedly assembled, disassembled and moved along the way.

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Breakthrough marks end of Bumblebee’s journey

October 06, 2020

The cool morning air was filled with excitement in a clearing near the intersection of Lexington Road and Grinstead Drive on the morning of September 22. After 21 months of carving its way through four miles and 625,000 tons of rock 18 stories underground, the Bumblebee machine had just thirty feet to go to complete the path of the Waterway Protection Tunnel under Louisville.

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Trip into Waterway Protection Tunnel offers fresh look at project

December 17, 2019
Tunnel tour

When Michael Fitzner’s suggestion of “Bumblebee” won the contest in 2018 to name the machine boring MSD’s four-mile long Waterway Protection Tunnel, he was awarded a chance to go into the tunnel with five coworkers. On December 5, Fitzner, with Latoya English, Adonis Henderson, Patrick Meador, Cemal Mitchell and Kayla Sheckell, loaded into a large metal cage and were lowered 220 feet down the working shaft into the tunnel via a crane.

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MSD Tunnel core samples featured at Engineering Days

February 26, 2019
Engineering Days

The Kentucky Science Center’s Engineering Days on February 8 offered students an opportunity to speak one-on-one with engineering professionals who imagine, design and create the world around us. MSD’s Waterway Protection Tunnel Project Manager Jacob Mathis spoke with students from across the region about MSD’s largest project in our history.

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‘Bumblebee’ to carry on Ali’s legacy 18 stories underground

November 05, 2018

The legacy of Louisville’s own Muhammad Ali continues to live on as the name “Bumblebee” was unveiled for the MSD tunnel boring machine, which will excavate MSD’s Waterway Protection Tunnel underneath Louisville.

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Waterway Protection Tunnel continues moving forward

September 24, 2018
Boring machine

A trip to Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, about an hour southeast of Pittsburgh, gave MSD Engineer and Project Manager Jacob Mathis, P.E. and Engineering-Collections System and Construction Manager Greg Powell, P.E. an opportunity to see the tunnel boring machine that will create the Waterway Protection Tunnel. Mt. Pleasant is where tunnel contractor J.F. Shea Co., Inc. operates a facility to rebuild and test tunnel boring machines prior to shipping to a project site.

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Tunnel Extension Means Less Disruption

September 06, 2018
Tunnel Ext

MSD held a Public Outreach Meeting August 28th to share an update on the 1.5 mile extension of the Waterway Protection Tunnel and the elimination of the I-64 & Grinstead CSO Basin. Area residents were given the opportunity to ask questions about the extension and the project in general.

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MSD’s Waterway Protection Tunnel reaches 220-foot depth milestone

August 14, 2018
Tunnel depth

MSD contractors working to build a massive underground tunnel to prevent wastewater and stormwater from overflowing and entering the Ohio River and Beargrass Creek have reached a significant milestone. The “working” and pump station shafts — which will carry workers and equipment underground — have reached their full depth of 220 feet below the surface.  

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Rock samples from Waterway Protection Tunnel reveal Louisville history

August 13, 2018
Closeup of core sample

MSD’s project to build a tunnel 18 stories underground for wastewater and stormwater storage has also unearthed hundreds of millions of years of history.

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MSD’s Waterway Protection Tunnel to extend and capture more wastewater overflow

August 01, 2018
Tunnel Extension

MSD’s project to build a massive tunnel 18 stories underground to help keep millions of gallons of sewage out of the Ohio River and Beargrass Creek will be expanded to capture even more wastewater and stormwater overflow – and eliminate the need for a planned storage basin project.

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