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|INTRODUCTION Design of supports for underground chambers in rock has undergone considerable development. This becomes evident when comparing support dimensions of subway station caverns built in the U.S. over the past fifteen years. The Porter Square Station cavern, which is a part of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) Red Line extension, is the latest in this series. It is approximately 168 m (550 ft) long, 21 m (70 ft) wide, and 14 m (45 ft) high, and has a permanent support of light steel ribs imbedded in a 0.4 m nominal (15 in) shotcrete lining. An extensive construction control instrumentation program made it possible to evaluate the performance of the cavern and its support. This evaluation, which is presented in this paper, was the objective of a research project sponsored by the Urban Mass Transportation Administration (UMTA) and jointly conducted by Haley and Aldrich, and MIT. The actually used design procedure was compared with other approaches, notably procedures based on Finite Element analyses and empirical rock mass classification methods. Support dimensions predicted with all these approaches were compared to the actual support and its performance.|