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Prospectus Blog A few good tunnels

We’ve already mentioned the 50 km tunnel for $3.5 billion that the Swiss voted to build. I wondered: the Swiss are building some fantastic tunnel in the Alps (see Matt’s 6/11 post)… but they’re Swiss. Surely they must be crazy.
As it turns out, their costs are not unusual for transportation infrastructure projects in developed countries. A random grab-bag since 1994:
English Channel Tunnel
Cost: 9 billion pounds (US $14 billion)
Length: 50 km (31 miles)
Cost per mile: $451 mil
Cooper River Bridge, SC, longest cable-stay bridge in America
Cost: $531 million
Length: 2.5 miles
Cost per mile: $212 mil
Woodrow Wilson Bridge, Washington DC
Cost: $2.4 billion
Length: 1.1 miles
Cost per mile: $2.2 bil
Daily Commuters: 200,000 (twice the capacity for the same price as ours)
Millau Viaduct, France
Cost: $394 million
The builders, Eiffage, financed the construction in return for a concession to collect the tolls for 75 years, until 2080. However, if the concession is very profitable, the French government can assume control of the bridge in 2044.
Length: 1.5 miles
Cost per mile: $262 mil
Sydney Harbor Tunnel, Australia
Cost: A$ 554 mil
Built by a private partnership, the tunnel is currently on a thirty-year lease, and will be handed back to the State Government in August 2022.
Length: 1.4 miles
Cost per mile: A$ 395 mil


In Seattle:
Alaskan Way Viaduct
Cost: $3.4 billion or $2.4 billion
Length: 1.2 miles
Cost per mile: $2.8 or $2 bil
520 Replacement Bridge
Cost: $4.4 billion
Length: 2.4
Cost per mile: $1.8 bil
It’s not just Switzerland… it’s the rest of the world, including our own USA. If everyone else can build a tunnel or bridge to meet their transportation needs for a fraction of the cost of our proposed projects, surely we can, too.
TECHNORATI TAGS: <a href="http://technorati.com/tag/TUNNELS, BRIDGES, COST PER MILE, PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS, SEATTLE"rel="tag"TUNNELS, BRIDGES, COST PER MILE, PUBLIC PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS, SEATTLE