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The Longest Railway Tunnel on Earth

The Longest Railway Tunnel on Earth

Besides delicious chocolate, tall mountains with awesome skiing conditions and cool knifes, Switzerland is also known for having the longest railway tunnel in the world.

Briefly mention in an earlier post of ours, the Gotthard Base Tunnel, GBT for short, which penetrates through the Alps, is considered the longest railway tunnel in the world by geodetic distance at over 35 miles between the two portals, also making it the world’s longest transit tunnel with a total of 94.3 miles long broken out through solid rocks.

And you guys though that the lines at Disneyland to get on a ride were long!

According to Wikipedia, GBT “opened on 1 June 2016, and full service began on 11 December 2016.

With a route length of 57.09 km (35.5 mi), it is the world’s longest and deepest traffic tunnel and the first flat, low-level route through the Alps.”

We wonder if the outside temperature had a major impact in the constructions of the tunnel?

Actually, come to think of it, if our 9th grade metal work class taught us anything, we would lean on the side of “yes”.

But at least the chocolate didn’t melt in the tunnel workers pockets! ?

As anticipated, “the main purpose of the Gotthard Base Tunnel is to increase local transport capacity through the Alpine barrier, especially for freight, notably on the Rotterdam–Basel–Genoa corridor, and more specifically to shift freight volumes from trucks to freight trains.

This both significantly reduces the danger of fatal road crashes involving trucks, and reduces the environmental damage caused by heavy trucks.

The tunnel provides a faster connection between the canton of Ticino and the rest of Switzerland, as well as between northern and southern Europe, cutting the Basel/ZürichLuganoMilan journey time for passenger trains by one hour (and from Lucerne to Bellinzona by 45 minutes.)”

So build a tunnel to reduce time spent traveling, improve safety and actually get people where they need to get in a timely and comfortbale manner; got it.

Sounds like Los Angeles could use a railway transit system (wink , wink)!

Want to see some cool pictures of the GTB? Great! Here is a detailed article from The National that was written by Liz Claus showcasing the massively successful project.




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