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Originally published Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at 12:49 PM

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Tunneling machine arriving for big Seattle dig

The world's widest tunnel boring machine arrived in Seattle in pieces Tuesday aboard a ship from Japan.

The Associated Press

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SEATTLE —

The world's widest tunnel boring machine arrived in Seattle in pieces Tuesday aboard a ship from Japan.

The ship was greeted in Elliott Bay by a fire boat spraying water.

The $80 million machine called Bertha was built at a factory in Osaka. Its 41 pieces will be reassembled in a pit to begin the year-long dig to create a two-mile tunnel under downtown Seattle.

The new section of Highway 99 replacing the Alaskan Way Viaduct will have a diameter of nearly 58 feet.

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