The tunnel, built on the Cankurtaran Pass on the Artvin-Rize-Ardahan highway connecting the Black Sea to Iran through Eastern Anatolia, was opened for transportation by the Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communication, Ahmet Arslan and the Minister of Youth and Sports, Osman Aşkın Bak. Minister Arslan told reporters before the opening that the Black Sea would be connected to Central Anatolia via the Cankurtaran Tunnel as a shortcut.
Expressing that they have put an important tunnel into service, Arslan said, “Lifeguard tunnels of 5 thousand 200 meters are two departures, two arrivals, double tubes, but we have three tunnels, four viaducts and four bridges on this route. We have put two departure and two arrival routes into service as of today, a total of approximately 14 kilometers. With these tunnels, we will shorten the route by 12 kilometers. " said.
Arslan, pointing to the importance of the road shortened to 12 kilometers, said:
“When it snowed especially in winter conditions, this place became impassable. We make the no-passage area accessible with the Cankurtaran Tunnel. Lifeguard on the name. Therefore, we will save lives. It is incommensurable with money, but we will save approximately 100 million lira each year due to the shortening of this road. We will save on fuel, time, maintenance and repair of vehicles, and carbon dioxide emissions. This route, which costs about 568 million liras, is important to us. If you think about the savings it provides every year, it will save itself in about 5-6 years. "
Indicating that they will put the remaining two viaducts into service until June, Arslan said, “Our President and Prime Minister have a very serious effort in the construction of this tunnel. Hopefully, with the participation of our President, we will officially open it later, but we have opened it to traffic as of today so that our people can use this road and tunnels as soon as possible. " he spoke.
Turkey will be the largest double-tube tunnel
Minister Arslan stated that the truck traffic can easily come to Georgia via Kars, Artvin and Ardahan and said, “We were able to build 80 kilometers of tunnels in this country in 50 years. The largest tunnel was Bolu Mountain tunnel with 3 thousand 250 meters. It took 19 years to build and we finished it as the AK Party government. Lifeguard Tunnel 5 thousand 200 meters as of today, the service will be Turkey's largest double-tube tunnel. " used the expression.
Expressing that there are 47,5 kilometers of tunnels in Artvin, Arslan said:
“We have built 80 kilometers of tunnels in 50 years. The length of the tunnel we have built only in Artvin is 47 kilometers. If you consider the roads to be renewed due to the Yusufeli Dam, we will renew 67 kilometers. Of these 67 kilometers, 52 kilometers are tunnels. I am glad to state that in the last 15 years we have completed 337 kilometers of tunnels. We now complete a 50-kilometer-long tunnel every year. We are adding our night to our day so that our projects are completed as soon as possible and they are put into service for our nation. "
Arslan stated that they received criticism from time to time about the late opening of the tunnel although it ended early, “It has nothing to do with us. The job went to the courts. We had to wait for the court decision for about 18 months. " said.
Reminding that they put the single tube into service in the Ovit Tunnel, Arslan said, “I hope we will finish the second tube this spring and we will put it into service in June. Our goal is to open the Zigana Tunnel next year, too. " he spoke.
Following his speech, Minister Arslan opened the 5-meter Cankurtaran Tunnel to traffic using his official vehicle. Minister Bak accompanied Arslan.
The Cankurtaran Tunnel, located on the Cankurtaran Pass at 690 altitude on the Rize-Artvin-Ardahan highway between Borcka and Hopa districts of Artvin, was built as an alternative to the passage that connects the Black Sea to Iran through the Eastern Anatolia Region, and especially in difficult winter conditions .
The foundation of the double-tube Cankurtaran Tunnel was laid by Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım on 29 October 2010, when he was the Minister of Transport, Maritime Affairs and Communications.
The tunnel, which will largely eliminate the transportation problems in the Black Sea, will also form an important line connecting the Black Sea to the Middle East.