Gotthard Traffic Queue Mounts as Holidaymakers Head South


Traffic queues at the northern entrance to Switzerland’s Gotthard Tunnel reached 14 km on Saturday morning, as people headed south for their holidays.

Travellers faced waiting times of more than two hours to enter the tunnel, according to auto group Touring Club Suisse (TCS). The tailback, which built during the morning, had already reached 11 km on Friday afternoon. It comes as school holidays begin in Switzerland’s most populous canton of Zurich.

The 17-kilometre Gotthard tunnel, rich in cultural and geographic significance, is one of the main thoroughfares through central Switzerland, linking the German-speaking north with the Italian-speaking canton of Ticino in the south. A separate, 57-kilometre train line – the longest rail tunnel in the world – also cuts through the mountain.

The Gotthard road tunnel, opened in 1980, regularly sees long traffic tailbacks at peak travel times.

In February 2016, Swiss voters gave the go-ahead to build a second road tunnel, to allow for renovations of the existing infrastructure and ensure better connections between north and south. Construction began in 2021. The second tunnel is not expected to open until at least 2029.

Source : Swissinfo