On September 16, 2009, shortly before 4 pm, in the west tunnel of the Gotthard Base Tunnel, Tunnel Boring Machine Gabi 2 broke through the last metres of rock between Erstfeld and Amsteg. Breakthrough in the east tunnel already took place on June 16, 2009.
Breakthrough of the tunnel was achieved with very great accuracy. By covering a distance of 7.2 kilometres in only 18 months, the tunnel boring machine arrived in Amsteg half a year earlier than planned. Breakthrough in the east tunnel was also attained by the tunnel constructors six months ahead of schedule in June 2009.
AlpTransit Gotthard Ltd is very satisfied with the achievements on the construction of the Gotthard Base Tunnel, confirmed CEO Renzo Simoni. With the breakthrough in the west tunnel, excavation work for the base tunnel on the north side of the Gotthard is now complete. Of the 151.8 km of the tunnel system under the Gotthard, a total of around 137 km, or almost 91 percent, has now been excavated. The final breakthrough between Sedrun and Faido is expected to take place at the end of 2010 or beginning of 2011.