Gotthard Base Tunnel – The breakthrough!

That’s it! Today October 15, 2010 at 2pm, the Gotthard Base Tunnel is bored and becomes the longest railway tunnel in the world with 57 kilometers under the whole Gotthard massif.
Tunnel construction began in 1993 but it was not until 2017 that it will finally be completed to pass the first trains to link Zurich to Milan by one hour less than today.
However we must not forget that the AlpTransit project also include the drilling of two other tunnels, Ceneri Tunnel between Bellinzona and Lugano, and Zimmerberg Tunnel between Zurich and Zug.

Le tunnel de base du Saint Gothard – Le percement!

Ça y est! Depuis aujourd’hui 15 octobre 2010 à 14:00, le tunnel de base du Saint Gothard est percé et devient le plus long tunnel ferroviaire du monde avec 57 kilomètres sous la totalité du massif alpin du Gothard.
Le percement du tunnel avait commencé en 1993 mais ce n’est qu’en 2017 qu’il sera enfin terminé pour laisser passer les premiers trains qui permettrons de relier Zürich à Milan en une heure de moins qu’actuellement.
Toutefois il ne faut pas oublier que le projet AlpTransit comprendre également le percement de deux autres tunnels: le tunnel de Ceneri, entre Lugano et Bellinzona, et le tunnel du Zimmerberg, entre Zürich et Zug.

“Sissi” le Tunnelier / “Sissi” the Tunnel Boring Machine

Gotthard Base Tunnel – Only 10 meters left

Today there are only 10 meters left to dig into what will be the longest railway tunnel in the world with 57 km.
Recall that the tunnel will connect the canton of Uri to the canton of Ticino, passing under the totality of the Gotthard massif.
The final drilling is planned for October 15, 2010 if all goes well between now and then.
A special website has been created for this event “Weltrekord Am Gotthard” (World Record at the Gotthard).

Tunnel de base du Gothard – Plus que 10 mètres

Aujourd’hui, il ne reste plus que 10 mètres à creuser dans ce qui sera le plus long tunnel ferroviaire du monde avec 57 kilomètres.
Rappelons que ce tunnel reliera le canton d’Uri au canton du Tessin en passant sous la totalité du massif du Saint-Gothard.
Le percement final est prévu pour le 15 octobre 2010 si tout se passe bien d’ici là.
Un site web spécial a été créé pour cet évènement “Weltrekord Am Gotthard” (Record du monde au Gothard).

Only 10 meters left / Plus que 10 mètres
Only 10 meters left / Plus que 10 mètres

Site officiel du Tunnel de base du Gothard / Official website of the Gotthard Base Tunnel

There will be no Porta Alpina!

Il n’y aura pas de Porta Alpina!

Porta Alpina
Sedrun, the place where the Porta Alpina underground station was supposed to be built.
Sedrun, l’endroit où la gare souterraine Porta Alpina aurait dû être construite.

Today, the canton of Graubünden decided to give up the Porta Alpina project!
The canton did not succeed to find the 50 millions CHF necessary to finance the project. The Swiss federal government refused to finance the project and their was a real opposition from Alptransit and from the Federal Railways!

Aujourd’hui, le canton des Grisons a décidé de renoncer au projet Porta Alpina!
Le canton n’a pas réussi à trouver le financement nécessaire pour mener à bien le projet: 50 millions de francs suisses. Le gouvernement fédéral a refusé de participer au financement et il y avait une véritable opposition de la part d’Alptransit et des Chemins de Fer Fédéraux!

“Porta Alpina” official site.

Merci Sugus et BBarchi pour l’information.

Porta Alpina, the Gotthard train station project will see the light of day !

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)