Switzerland Seizes the Title for World's Longest Underground Tunnel
The construction for what is now the world's longest tunnel began all the way back in 1996. Two million truckloads of dirt later, Switzerland's NEAT Gotthard Base Tunnel (which lives 8,000 feet beneath the Alps) has officially been completed, and is open to the public as of June 1st, 2016. The new hub will take passengers from Zurich to Milan in two hours and 50 minutes—a whole hour quicker than the trip took pre-tunnel. The 35-mile tunnel overtakes the previous world record holder: the 14.5-mile Seikan Tunnel in Japan.
The $10.3 billion project was taken on by more than 2,000 workers. Since the railway was designed completely flat for a majority of the line, trains will be able to travel safely at speeds as fast as 150 miles per hour. It's expected that as many as 260 freight trains and 65 passengers trains will ride the tracks daily. Check out the video below for more information on the tunnel and its trains:
Erika Owen is the Audience Engagement Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @erikaraeowen.