€1 billion tunnel for Genoa port

Construction is underway for Genoa’s €1 billion port tunnel.
Road Structures / March 6, 2024 1 minute Read
By MJ Woof
Genoa’s new port tunnel will feature the largest bores of any tunnel in Europe, cutting car congestion in the historic city – image courtesy of © Michelangelo Oprandi|Dreamstime.com

Construction has commenced for the €1 billion tunnel that will run underneath the port of Genoa in Italy. The 3.4km tunnel link will be 45m under the water, providing a new transport connection between the east and west of the city.

This will be the first major underwater tunnel in Italy and also have the largest bores of any road tunnel in Europe. The dual tube tunnel has been designed by Renzo Piano, who also designed the new Genoa San Giorgio Bridge spanning the Polcavera River in Genoa, replacing the failed Morandi Bridge.

Each tube will carry traffic in one direction, allowing speeds of up to 70km/h. Construction of the new tunnel is expected to reduce traffic congestion in the city when the link is complete in the third quarter of 2029. The client for the projects  is the Italian road firm Autostrade per l'Italia (ASPI). The work also includes building 800m of connecting roads at either end of the tunnel. The project was originially expected to cost €700 million but has been subject to cost increases due to the rising prices for materials and labour.

Piano first proposed building an underwater tunnel for the port of Genoa in 1992 as part of a plan to redevelop the historic city's waterfront area. It has taken until now for the project to be realised.

“Genoa’s transport and port logistic hub is enmeshed in the densely woven urban fabric, and the harmonious development of the city and the port depend heavily upon the achievement of seamless travel by road between the east and westside of the Sampierdarena basin on the part of residents, businesses and tourists alike,” said the president of the Western Ligurian Sea Port Authority, Paolo Emilio Signorini. “The construction of the Underwater Road Tunnel is a strategic step in this direction, and represents a viable alternative for urban traffic and a decisive contribution to reducing heavy vehicle and passenger road traffic to/from the port.”

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