The 4-metre freight corridor on the Gotthard route
In order to further increase the volume of transalpine freight carried by rail rather than road, the Swiss Railway (SBB) will on behalf of the federal government upgrade the Gotthard route to a 4-metre corridor by 2020. This allows even semitrailers with a 4-metre headroom to be carried. The project is an important component of Switzerland's transport policy. In order to create a 4-metre corridor along the entire length of the Gotthard route, some 20 tunnels need to be enlarged and 80 alterations made to platforms, traction current systems, signaling installations and overpasses. The Bözberg is one of the infrastructures that need to be adapted to the new tunnel gauge.
More information on the 4-metre freight corridor on the website of the SBB.
New Bözberg tunnel
The current Bözberg tunnel was built in 1875 and its gauge is too narrow for freight trains with a 4-metre headroom. Since the works for the enlargement of the existing tunnel would have lasted six years and caused major traffic disruptions, the SBB opted for the construction of a new double-track tunnel running parallel to the old tube. Another advantage of creating a new infrastructure is that the existing tunnel will be used in the future as a service and rescue gallery, which will be a major improvement of safety.
SBB-Infrastruktur selected Implenia Schweiz AG as the main contractor. The joint venture IG Bözberg Plus is composed of Amberg Engineering AG (overall project management), Basler & Hofmann AG, F. Preisig AG and Heierli AG.