Gotthard Base Tunnel, world's longest and deepest rail tunnel, inaugurated in Switzerland

Jun 1, 2016 16:01 IST

Gotthard Base TunnelSwitzerland on 1 June 2016 inaugurated Gotthard Base Tunnel, world’s longest and deepest railway tunnel. The tunnel is also the first flat low-level route through the Alps.

It took 17 years and 12.2 billion Swiss francs to construct the tunnel.

About Gotthard Base Tunnel

The Gotthard Base Tunnel has route length of 57.09 km and a total of 151.84 km of tunnels, shafts and passages.

It is a part of the AlpTransit project, also known as the New Railway Link through the Alps (NRLA).

It is situated 2.3km deep under the Alps.

It is the third tunnel connecting the cantons of Uri and Ticino after the Gotthard Tunnel and the Gotthard Road Tunnel.

The main purpose of the Gotthard Base Tunnel is to increase total transport capacity across the Alps, especially for freight.

The construction of the tunnel began in 1996 after 64 percent of Swiss voters accepted the AlpTransit project in a 1992 referendum.

Drilling operations in the eastern tunnel were completed on 15 October 2010 in a ceremony broadcast live on Swiss TV.

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