Thursday, January 21, 2016

Those burrowing humans!

Those burrowing humans!  This is the first I've heard of a proposed project (lots more here) to build a 92 kilometer (about 55 mile) long tunnel under the Baltic Sea between Helsinki, Finland and Tallinn, Estonia.  The estimated costs are up to 13 billion Euros.  Politicians nearly always underestimate such costs, so likely it would be more like 20 to 30 billion Euros (or $18 to $27 billion at today's exchange rates). 

I suspect the benefits for such a tunnel would be primarily for the Finns, who by virtue of their geography are relatively isolated from the rest of Europe.  That tunnel would give them direct access to all of Europe by rail, which is much less expensive than air travel.  Of course, it would also do the reverse: give all of Europe direct rail access to Finland.  One likely consequence of that I personally find unfortunate: there will be many more people traveling to the relatively isolated (and very beautiful) hinterlands of Finland...

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