Sedrun, canton of Graubünden, SwitzerlandThe “Porta Alpina” project received the agreement of the Swiss government!What is “Porta Alpina”?This is the brilliant idea to transform the rescue stop of the future “Gotthard Base Tunnel”, which is located at the middle of the tunnel and 800 meters under the mountain, into a real public train station connected to the surface with lifts which are currently used as an access for the workers!
The boring of the “Gotthard Base Tunnel” started in 1996 and is planned to be finished in 2011. It will be the longest tunnel in the world with a length of 57 kilometers!
Today, 53 % of the tunnel is excavated.
The tunnel will link Bodio (330 m), Ticino, to Erstfeld (472 m), Uri, it will allow the trains to link Zürich to Milano without climbing the Gotthard.
The middle of the tunnel is exactly located 800 meters under Sedrun in the Surselva valley.
The “Porta Alpina” future train station (550 m) will allow the passengers of the Zürich – Milano line to transfer to the Brig – Chur – St Moritz line (Glacier Express) simply by taking a lift to the Sedrun (1404 m) train station at the surface of the mountain!
Today to make the same connection, the trains use the historical old Gotthard tunnel; the passengers must stop at Göschenen (1106 m) with a transfer to the rack train Göschenen – Andermatt (1447 m) and to transfer to the line Brig – Andermatt – Chur – St Moritz (Glacier Express).
“Porta Alpina” official site.
“Gotthard Base Tunnel“ official site.
(The Gotthard Base Tunnel with the future Porta Alpina train station. On the left the temporary funicular)
At Sedrun, a one cabin temporary funicular railway was built to take the workers from their temporary camp to the construction site and to the 800 m vertical access shaft which is used to reach the construction tunnel. This two lifts will be transformed into two 80 passengers lifts for the “Porta Alpina” future train station.
See also my web page about this funicular.
(Sedrun, the temporary funicular)