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Gotthard tunnel: World's longest and deepest rail tunnel opens in Switzerland

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posted on Jun, 1 2016 @ 08:45 AM
I think this is great. The longest rail tunnel, "Gotthard Tunnel," finally opened today after almost 20 years of being worked on. One main reason it was opened or at least voted for by the people was to help save the Alps, or keep them "Green." Of course moving goods faster and the money it will generate are also a given. I'm happy about the less pollution through such a beautiful part of the world.
I also just love what man can do that is a good thing when the mind is put to the task.

Some snippets from the article:

The 57km (35-mile) twin-bore Gotthard base tunnel will provide a high-speed rail link under the Swiss Alps between northern and southern Europe. The tunnel has overtaken Japan's 53.9km Seikan rail tunnel as the longest in the world and pushed the 50.5km Channel Tunnel linking the UK and France into third place.

The project, which cost more than $12bn (£8.3bn) to build, was endorsed by Swiss voters in a referendum in 1992. Voters then backed a proposal from environmental groups to move all freight travelling through Switzerland from road to rail two years later.

Engineers had to dig and blast through 73 different kinds of rock, some as hard as granite and others as soft as sugar. More than 28m tonnes of rock was excavated, which was then broken down to help make the concrete used to build the tunnel.

Now the completed tunnel, delivered on time and within budget, will create a mainline rail connection between Rotterdam in the Netherlands and Genoa in Italy.When full services begin in December, the journey time for travellers between Zurich and Milan will be reduced by an hour to two hours and 40 minutes

There are pictures and also video at THIS LINK TO THE STORY if you'd like to see more

edit on 6/1/16 by onehuman because: mumbling typo

posted on Jun, 1 2016 @ 08:59 AM
a reply to: onehuman

Great thread, I am on your side about pollution. 20 years of work and I am sure the people are proud of this!

posted on Jun, 1 2016 @ 09:11 AM
And the (extension to the existing) railwayconnection to it on Germany's side is postponed for another 20 years or so...

Yeah, great work everybody! /s

So, you can have the old 180 trains/day like they fit in the old tunnel, but not the > 300 trains/day because.. well, they were just too many for the poor citizens living close to the planned 4-tier railway down the Rhine valley. They protested and protested and when the Stuttgart-21 railway project hit the wall and breaking every planned costs, heavily, the local politicians began to listen to their protests and had the railway-project down to Swiss stopped and re-planed.

Aaaand this is why in Germany every larger project right about now is doomed for eternal standstill.

Not only because there are legit (or not so legit, but thats for the courts to discuss) reasons from residents against it, but because of regulations and such which are heavily impeding them.. And protests and lawsuits are holding it up, too.

posted on Jun, 1 2016 @ 04:37 PM
a reply to: onehuman

theres a few good documentaries out there that covered its construction, pretty impressive build.

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