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World's longest train tunnel

September 03, 2015 16:22 IST

The Gotthard Base Tunnel is one of the world’s most beautiful engineering marvels. 

Image: A journalist walks through an emergency tunnel at a multifunction and emergency stop station of the NEAT Gotthard Base Tunnel during a media visit near the town of Sedrun. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters
 
 

The daunting task of building the Gotthard Base Tunnel between Switzerland and Italy has been completed. However, trains will start using the tunnel only from June 2016.

Image: Workers operate on a tunnel drilling machine inside the Gotthard base tunnel in Erstfeld, central Switzerlan. Photograph: Michael Buholzer/Reuters
 
 

The 60 km long tunnel will reduce travel time between Zurich and Milan by one hour making it a 2 hour and 50 minute journey.

Image: Miners stand in front as the drill machine 'Gaby' breaks through the rock at the section Erstfeld-Amsteg at the construction site of the NEAT Gotthard Base Tunnel. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters
 
 

The Gotthard Base Tunnel consists of two 57-kilometres-long single-track tubes, on which trains can travel at a maximum speed of 250 kilometres per hour.

Image: A worker stands at the construction site of the NEAT Gotthard Base Tunnel. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters
 
 

With a route length of 57 km, it surpasses the Seikan Tunnel in Japan. Around 2,000 workers toiled over 20 years to build this tunnel. Eight workers lost their lives during the construction.

Image: Visitors walk through the construction site of the NEAT Gotthard Base Tunnel at the Erstfeld-Amsteg section . Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters
 
 

The Gotthard Base Tunnel is also the world's deepest railway tunnel ever constructed. 

Image: Workers have a break during the installation of the railway tracks in the NEAT Gotthard Base tunnel near Erstfeld n . Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters
 
 

A straight route with no curves or level crossings on the overground sections, the Gotthard and Ceneri Base Tunnels together make the project one of the world's most outstanding engineering projects. 

Image: Workers cycle next to the railway tracks at the NEAT Gotthard Base tunnel near Amsteg . Photograph: Ruben Sprich/Reuters
 
 

AlpTransit Gotthard AG, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Swiss Federal Railways built the tunnel at a cost of $10.3 billion.

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