CBBT profile PT


Project Description

The Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project will construct a new two-lane tunnel under Thimble Shoal Channel.  When complete, the new tunnel will carry two lanes of traffic southbound and the existing tunnel will carry two lanes of traffic northbound.



Quick Facts

  • Tunnel Length:  approximately one mile
    Tunnel Diameter:
  •      Inner Diameter (prior to roadway and support structure
  •      installation): 39 feet
  •      Outer Diameter: 42 feet
  • Construction Cost: $755,987,318
  • Construction Method:  Bored tunnel
    Construction Start (estimate):  October 1, 2017
    Construction Completion (estimate): October 1, 2022
    Maximum Tunnel Depth (Crown – at its deepest location (mid-channel)):  105 feet below the water surface
    Maximum Tunnel Depth (Invert – from the top of the roadway at its deepest location):  134 feet below the surface
  • Soil Removal:  The approximate amount of soil to be removed by the Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) is 500,000 cubic yards.
  • Concrete Sections:  The tunnel will consist of approximately 9,000 individual concrete pieces.  Approximately 42,000 cubic yards of concrete will be needed to make the tunnel sections.

Design-Build Team: Chesapeake Tunnel Joint Venture: Dragados USA and Schiavone Construction Company, LLC

For more information on the Design-Build team, click here.
To email the Design-Build team directly, click here.

Demonstrative Video:  To learn more about tunnel boring machines and to view a demonstrative video, click here.

TBM Manufacturer:  Herrenknecht of Germany

TBM Naming Contest:  In keeping with tunneling tradition, the CBBT recently hosted a TBM Naming Contest.  This contest was open to all 6th grade students who attend a school located within one of the following locales:  Virginia’s Accomack and Northampton Counties and the Cities of Chesapeake, Hampton, Portsmouth, Newport News, Norfolk and Virginia Beach.  The Top 10 Names have been selected and public voting will begin April 2 and run through April 13 at 4:30 pm EST.  For more contest information and how to vote, click here.

Project Funding

The Parallel Thimble Shoal Tunnel Project will be funded through a variety of means, including 1) the sale of revenue bonds, 2) TIFIA loan, 3) VTIB loan, and 4) monies from the District’s General Fund.