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World's longest rail tunnel opens in Switzerland

Switzerland on 1 June 2016 inaugurated Gotthard Base Tunnel, world’s longest and deepest railway tunnel. The tunnel is also the first flat low-level route through the Alps.
•    It took 17 years and 12.2 billion Swiss francs to construct the tunnel.
•    The Gotthard Base Tunnel has route length of 57.09 km and a total of 151.84 km of tunnels, shafts and passages.
•    It is a part of the AlpTransit project, also known as the New Railway Link through the Alps (NRLA).
•    It is situated 2.3km deep under the Alps.
•    It is the third tunnel connecting the cantons of Uri and Ticino after the Gotthard Tunnel and the Gotthard Road Tunnel.
•    The main purpose of the Gotthard Base Tunnel is to increase total transport capacity across the Alps, especially for freight.
•    The construction of the tunnel began in 1996 after 64 percent of Swiss voters accepted the AlpTransit project in a 1992 referendum.
•    Drilling operations in the eastern tunnel were completed on 15 October 2010 in a ceremony broadcast live on Swiss TV.