Saturday, December 29, 2007

Snow Mountain Tunnel

I travelled through the Snow Mountain Tunnel today. Here is a description from Wikipedia.

The Hsuehshan Tunnel (雪山隧道) or "Snow Mountain" tunnel, is the longest tunnel in Taiwan, located on the Taipei-Yilan Freeway (Taiwan National Highway No. 5).

The road connects the city of Taipei to the northeastern county of Yilan (Ilan), cutting down the journey time from two hours to just half an hour.

One of the key aims of constructing the tunnel was to connect the western coast of Taiwan, where 95% of the population live, to the eastern coast of the island and in doing so tackle the unbalanced development on the island.

It is constructed with one pilot tunnel and two main tunnels for eastbound and westbound traffic. The total length is 12.942 km, making the Hsuehshan Tunnel the second longest road tunnel in East Asia and the fifth longest road tunnel in the world.

While excavating the tunnel, engineers encountered difficult geological problems. There were serious tunnel collapses with groundwater flooding took place periodically during tunnel construction. Altogether, 25 lives were lost during 15 years of construction.

It opened in June 2006 to severe traffic jams. The Hsuehshan Tunnel broadcasts a dedicated radio station on two FM channels inside the tunnel. Drivers can tune to either of the two FM stations to hear announcements regarding the Heushshan Tunnel, rules for driving inside the tunnel, and music.


hongjun said...

Wonder do you visit the famous Shilin night market? hehe.. I was there in year 2005.


Anonymous said...

Hi Mr.Tan,

A good update on your trip as well as a good tunnel with FM broadcasting to enguage the motorists on a smooth and pleasant journey.Buy the way,LTA and other authorities should learn from their experiences for a better transport system in Singapore.

'ordinary citizen'

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