We don’t go over it, we go through it…

So,

Prague “part deux” is in the making and I’ve had enough of the art and all that cultural stuff. Back to big fast machines, explosions and cutting edge engineering. And of course, the Swiss are masters of all these things. Last week I read about a new tunnel that’s just been completed down south.

The Loetschberg tunnel is 34 kilometres long under the Alps and is the longest tunnel on land in the world. It supposedly cost about 4.3 billion Swiss Francs (3.5bn Euros) and has been designed to cut the travel time between Germany and Italy. Due to Switzerlands geographical location it is the main crossroads for cargo and ultimately they plan to shift most of the cargo to rail transport. This will prevent congestion on the roads especially through and over the Alps.

But this tunnel is only a tidger compared to the one they’re building to the east. The Gotthard Base tunnel is due to be completed in 2015 and will be 57 km long, making it the longest anywhere in the world. This will cut the time between Geneva and Milan to 2 and a half hours by train! They’ll need to shift 24 million tonnes of earth and the final bill is estimated at 8 billion Swiss Francs and as of now, they’ve completed 67% of the tunnel.

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Kind of puts the port tunnel in Dublin in persepctive! It’s just amazing what they can do these days.

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2 responses to “We don’t go over it, we go through it…

  1. 57km is a pretty long way…..I am amazed at what the technology can do – but I guess it hasn’t moved on that far since there have been tunnels through the Alps for a very long time!! Got to remember the first train tunnel in Scotland was through the Law in Dundee!!

  2. Those tunnels still freak me out. One accident, one fire or explosion in the middle and many lives are put at risk. Let me hike over it any day… well, any day that I have the extra time!
    -David
    http://hiking.myfeedportal.com/

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