September 2014

tunnels

Sumner Tunnel (krazykatkl)

Sumner Tunnel (krazykatkl)

Today's photo was submitted by Katie from Jamaica Plain. Katie works in the construction industry. Her thoughts on Boston:

"To me, Boston is a perfect balance.  It is large enough that each neighborhood can have it's own vibe, but small enough that you can easily get around to see what each area has to offer.  The area I love the best is the South End. There's nothing quite like dinner and drinks outside in the summer at any of the amazing restaurants it has to offer."


The Central Artery/Tunnel Project, locally known as the Big Dig, was one of the most expensive and complex highway projects in the United States. The project began in 1982 and concluded in 2007, years after it was supposed to be completed and billions of dollars over budget. The project replaced Boston's six lane elevated Central Artery Highway, 1-93, that ran through the the center of downtown, with an underground 8-10 lane highway.

The first benchmark of the Central Artery/Tunnel Project was the opening of the Ted Williams Tunnel to commercial traffic in 1995. The Ted Williams Tunnel, named after the legendary Boston Red Sox left fielder, extended the Mass Pike, and connected South Boston with Logan Airport. At 90 feet under Boston Harbor, it is the deepest tunnel in North America.

The construction of the Ted Williams Tunnel was challenging and required special machines to dig trenches in the harbor. Because of the loose constancy of the soil in Boston, engineers had to freeze the soil so it wouldn't sink.

Among other achievements, the project reduced citywide carbon monoxide by 12 percent and created more than 45 parks and major public plazas.


In 2009, two Boston architects came up with a plan to transform the abandoned Tremont Street Subway Tunnel into an interactive theater space. Read the story here.