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Video: Watch Sweden Build the World's 2nd-Longest Tunnel Under Water

The E4 bypass takes the long way 'round to preserve nature reserves and cultural treasures

March 21, 2018

In what will be one of the longest underground highways in the world, Sweden's E4 will include a tunnel section that will be nearly 10 miles long and about 180-feet deep below the Mälaren Strait.

The $4.1 billion project is embracing 'clean' construction with a goal of delivering the whole project with a carbon footprint 10 percent lower than what'd normally be expected.

Residents near the boring areas have had their homes and businesses upgrade with noise-reduction measures.

In ArsTechnica, Johan Brantmark, E4 project manager for the Swedish Transport Administration, said, "Typically, in an area with as low a building density as we have here, you'd take an overground route and construct bridges where necessary. That would be cheaper, and far easier of course. But we're motivated by other priorities, not the least of which is to preserve the surrounding environment. For that, tunnelling is the best approach."

The project began in 2014 and will eventually move 20 million tons of rock. So far, only 20 percent of the project has been excavated. The tunnel is expected to be finished in 2026.

Click here for more terrific photos of Sweden's E4 project:

 

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