Transport projects are one of the most important investments of a country. A powerful, well-developed infrastructure will insure the well being and the progress of the entire nation. One cannot ask for a great economy if there is no transport network, comprising air, road and rail to sustain it. This is why countries around the world stopped looking at money when in need for a new system of this kind. Billions of dollars are used for this sole purpose and the impressive amounts that flow into these projects leave us astound. If a country is rich, some of its founds will definitely be used so as to develop and modernize the infrastructure. These are the most expensive transport projects in the world.
1. Interstate Highway System Network (United States)
This is the most expensive transport project on the planet. It cost 114 billion $ and it was finished in 1992. It was named after the president Dwight D Eisenhower (its official name is ‘The Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defence Highways’) who was its greatest supporter. This is a network of limited access roadways which links all the major cities of the USA and it covers a total 75,440 km.
2. High speed rail network (China)
China impressed the entire world when the new high speed rail network was officially opened, on June 30. The train which almost flies on this track is the fastest in the world, reducing the time needed to cover the distance of 1, 318 km between Beijing and Shanghai at half. One can now travel between these two cities in 5 hours. The project cost 32, 5 billion$ and it is not the first of this kind to be carried out in China. In fact, China has the longest high-speed rail network in the world. It comprises as much as 8, 358 km of routes in service, of which 2,197 km of railway is reserved for trains that reach 350km/h.
3. Crossrail (England)
Crossrail is an ongoing infrastructure project and its estimated cost will be of 25, 5 billion dollars. The project features the construction of major new railway connections in central London. The railway will be crossed by 10 carriage trains which will run at frequencies of up to 24 trains per hour in both directions. It is scheduled that the first train start circulating on these tracks in 2017.
4. Big Dig Central Artery/Tunnel Project (United States)
Big dig was the most expensive highway system in USA. Its cost of 22 billion $ is impressive even for a country such as America. Big Dig is located in Boston and its purpose was that of rerouting the Central Artery (Interstate 93), the chief highway through the heart of the city, into a 3.5-mile (5.6-km) tunnel. The project concluded in December 2007 and it sadly demanded the lives of 4 men.
5. Hong Kong International Airport (Hong Kong)
Located on the island of Chek Lap Kok, the Hong Kong airport opened for commercial purposes in 1998. Back then, the cost of 20 billion $ was jaw dropping , and it is impressive to think that 13 years later, the project may still be found on this top 10. The Hong Kong International Airport has won eight Skytrax World Airport Awards for customer satisfaction most of the years since then.
6. Second Avenue Subway (U.S.)
This is an infrastructure program worth 17 billion $ which is not finished yet. The second avenue subway is a major transport project which was schemed 75 years ago. It is a planned rapid transit subway line, which is part of New York City’s Subway System. It is scheduled that it will be completed and functional by 2016, a date that met many critics as it was started in 2007 and it was expected to operate much earlier.
7. Channel Tunnel (Between England and France)
The famous Channel Tunnel was chosen one of the seven wonders of the Modern World in 1996 by the American Society for Civil Engineers, and this is because it has the longest undersea portion (37,9 km) of any tunnel in the world. It links Folkestone, Kent in England with Coquelles, Pas-de-Calais near Calais in northern France beneath the English Channel at the Strait of Dover. Also, it is really deep: at its lowest point, it goes as much as 75 meters under the sea! No wonder such an important transport project and such a record settler cost 15, 4 billion$…
8. Al- Makhtoum International Airport (U.A.E)
Named after one of the most important families in U.A.E, the royal house of Dubai, the Al- Makhtoum International Airport was opened in 2010 with one runway only and only for cargo flights. Passenger operation are planned to start at the end of the year 2011. It will be the main part of Dubai World Central, a planned residential, commercial and logistics completed by 2022. This amazing piece of engineering was 10 billion $.
9. Thameslink Program (England)
The initial Thameslink was a huge success, becoming severely overcrowded as soon as it opened, in 1988. This is why the Thameslink program was initiated. It is a plan to enlarge the railway with 100 stations so that new and longer trains will be able to run through it and ease the circulation. This transport project consists in platform lengthening, station remodeling, new railway infrastructure, and additional rolling stock. The railway is planned to be completed by 2018, but some major works are already finished and part of the new route will be ready to function in 2012. The whole project was estimated at 9.7 billion $ top.
10. Gotthard base tunnel (Switzerland)
Gottard is a railway tunnel beneath the Alps and it has a total length of 151, 84 km. It will be the longest rail tunnel in the world when completed. Gottard is scheduled to become functional by 2016, when the estimated cost of this important transport project will have reached 9 billion $. Its main purpose has environmental background, as it is intended to reduce the ecological damage done by large trucks.