Take a tour around the world by checking out some of the biggest and most fascinating man-made underground structures!
Underground structures can sometimes be even more incredible than above-ground structures. After all, while appropriately building both structures can be difficult, underground structures often have to deal with even more serious problems, including hydrostatic pressure and the sheer weight of any earth that may lie on top of the structure. Here are six incredible underground structures that have gone against that difficulty.
Deepest Subway Station: Arsenala Station, Kyiv, Ukraine | 346 Feet Deep
Photos By: Unsplash
Going down into the earth to visit a subway station definitely isn’t an inherently strange concept; the deepest station in the NYC subway system is over 150 feet underground. However, this is only about half of the depth of the Arsenala Station, which reaches a staggering 346 feet deep. This is because Arsenala is on a tall hill, but the next station is at ground level. To avoid the mechanical problems that could arise from traversing this hill regularly, the designers just decided to go through the hill.
Deepest Basement: Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia | 120 Feet Deep
Longest Underground Tunnel: Gotthard Base Tunnel, Erstfeld and Bodio, Switzerland | 35 Miles Long
The Swiss Alps are some of the most beautiful natural formations in Europe, but because of their massive rise in elevation, people have typically had to either go around or over them to get from one side to the other. This changed with the Gotthard Base Tunnel, which goes 35 miles from Erstfeld to Bodio, two municipalities in Switzerland. It cuts directly through the Swiss Alps, making it the first to create a flat route through the Alps. It was approved in 1992 but didn’t open to the public until 2016.
Deepest Building Foundation: Salesforce Tower, San Francisco, China | 310 Feet Below Grade
14-foot-thick concrete slab about an acre wide.
Biggest Underground City: Derinkuyu, Cappadocia, Turkey | 18 Stories Deep
Deepest Underground Research Center: Jinping Underground Laboratory, Jinping, China | 7,900 Feet Deep
Underground structures have always been interesting to look at. Whether you’re researching the most incredible skyscraper foundations or you’re just looking at your own basement, it’s a constant reminder that humans love to create things, regardless of what those things are.