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Science fiction. The Greatest Tunnels in the World

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Tunnels are found almost in every country today. It is impossible to imagine transportation and communication systems of any developed country without tunnels. The first underground structures were created thousands of years ago. Every palace had hidden passageways that were used by people in case of grave peril. Modern tunnels are built for different purposes. They provide the available space for cars and trains, water and sewage, even power and communication lines. Majestic mountain ranges and canals are no longer unavoidable obstacles for people. They are easy to pass moving through the tunnel. There are many record holders among the contemporary traffic tunnels. Their length is so great that it requires more than one hour’s journey to follow the whole route. Tunnels – the unique masterpieces of modern architecture. That’s what the next articles in this series are about.

Laerdal tunnel, Norway

Currently the world’s longest road tunnel is in Norway, Sogn og Fjordane. The length of the Laerdal tunnel is 24600 meters. The tunnel opened in 2000 and immediately became a real sight of the global value. It has a number of significant equipment. Free passage is a great asset when using this world’s most uniquely constructed object. A high quality road is now accessible to drivers. The tunnel is equipped with all the necessary directional and road signs. Nonetheless, is quite an effort to travel such a long distance.The main difficulty for motorists is a monotony of traffic which impairs concentration.

Laerdal tunnel, Norway To make the journey through the tunnel more comfortable, special attention has been paid to the lightning. It changes in different parts of the way and imitates natural light, which keeps drivers from being inattentive. Since its opening thousands of tourists drive through the tunnel for the unique experience. Everyone seeks to enjoy the unusual artistic lightning. The Laerdal tunnel is equipped with special rest areas every 5 km, where one can park his or her car and enjoy one’s stay in such a fancy place. Next - Seikan tunnel

Seikan tunnel, Japan

Seikan tunnel, Japan Railway tunnels are of no less significance to travellers. Japan is famous for its longest undersea tunnel in the world named Seikan. The Seikan Tunnel is 53850 metres long which makes travelling underground by train incredibly interesting. Seikan is an undersea tunnel. Its construction began in 1946 in order to connect Japan’s main island of Honshu with the island of Hokkaido. Complete article

Euro Tunnel, United Kingdom - France

Euro Tunnel, United Kingdom - France Eurotunnel lies under the English Channel. It started operating train services in 1994 and currently remains one of the greatest attractions in Europe. The railway tunnel links two states - the United Kingdom and France and lies between the towns of Folkestone and Calais. The tunnel is famous for its shuttle service. Eurotunnel Shuttle is the world’s biggest train conveying vehicles. Complete article

Lotschberg, Switzerland

Lotschberg, Switzerland One of the leading tunnels, Lötschberg railway tunnel opened in 2007, whereas its construction ended the year before. Lötschberg is the world’s longest land tunnel, 34700 metres long. It accommodates passenger and freight trains. The tunnel links the densely populated Swiss canton of Vale, which is famous for its thermal water resorts with the canton of Bern, which is also very popular among tourists. Complete article

Zhongnanshan tunnel, Japan

Zhongnanshan tunnel, Japan Japanese road tunnel Zhongnanshan can really be called a product of design art and architecture. It has a substantial length of more than 18000 metres and a unique design. The tunnel’s lighting system imitates rays of lights and numerous flower, lawn and plants compositions in turn are fashionable elements of decoration. Complete article

Hsuehshan tunnel, Taiwan

Hsuehshan tunnel, Taiwan The famous Hsuehshan tunnel or Snow Mountain is cut through the mountain range in Taiwan. The tunnel was opened to the public in 2006. It connects the city of Taipei and the popular tourist area - the Yilan valley. Yilan valley is the focus of the most interesting natural and historical sights that are visited by thousands of tourists every day. Complete article

Gotthard-Strassen tunnel, Switzerland

Gotthard-Strassen tunnel, Switzerland One of the world’s longest tunnels is the Gotthard Road Tunnel. It is 17000 metres long. The underground motorway under the Lepontine Alps has specially been built to connect two major cantons – the northern Canton of Uri and the southern canton of Ticino. The construction began in 1969 and has been lasting for 11 years. Trips through the tunnel are easy and comfortable. The lighting system is carefully designed. Complete article

Arlberg tunnel, Austria

Arlberg tunnel, Austria The Arlberg Tunnel was driven in the Austrian Alps in 1978. Over the years the tunnel has remained one of the world’s leaders in scale and equipment. It’s Austrian longest road tunnel with a length of 10240 metres whose construction has been lasting more than four years. The tunnel has no any original design, technical equipment of high quality is its main distinctive feature. Complete article

Tunel De Guadarrama, Spain

Tunel De Guadarrama, Spain Spain's longest tunnel Guadarrama was opened for traffic in 2007. The railway tunnel connects Madrid and Valladolid, its length is about 28400 metres. Guadarrama is a twin-tube rail tunnel which is a large transport complex. Since its opening the tunnel is used by the AVE high-speed trains which run in both directions simultaneously. Complete article

Dai-Shimizu tunnel, Japan

Dai-Shimizu tunnel, Japan Japan is truly the world leader in the number and diversity of tunnels. Dai-Shimizu railway tunnel deserves particular attention among them. The tunnel runs between the cities of Tokyo and Niigata, its length is 22200 metres. The first train passed through the tunnel in 1982. It’s hard to imagine but thanks to the Jōetsu high-speed express the locals have got an opportunity to get from one city to another three hours faster than before. Complete article

Severomuisky tunnel, Russia

Severomuisky tunnel, Russia In Russia there are also many prominent tunnels. The largest one is the Severomuysky railway tunnel. Its construction began in 1977 and completed 24 years later. Its operational use commenced much later, in 2003. The structure of the tunnel is quite complicated and involves a lot of developments and a bypass with the total length of 54000 metres. It is named after the Severomuysky mountain range it cuts through. It is important to note that this region is characterized by harsh climatic conditions. Complete article
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