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Daily press, 2013-07-12, 11:20 AM

Bosphorus breakthrough: New tunnel between Europe and Asia

It is the realization of a long-held urban vision and a mammoth project: In the 14 million population metropolis of Istanbul in the northwest of Turkey a 13.6 kilometer rail tunnel will soon link the two continents Europe and Asia – across the Bosphorus Strait. The “Marmaray” project also includes the upgrading of 63 kilometers of existing track and the construction of 36 stations. For this phase of construction ThyssenKrupp Elevator is supplying 191 elevators and 155 escalators, making it one of the key suppliers for this gigantic infrastructure project. The client is a Spanish joint venture consisting of Obrascón Huarte Lain (OHL) and Invensys Rail Dimetronic.

The 346 passenger transportation systems – including numerous panoramic elevators – will guarantee passengers high levels of comfort and safety. They will be installed in the stations as well as in various pedestrian crossings and administrative buildings. The escalators will meet the very highest demands on robustness and reliability: In heavy-duty commercial design they will be capable of withstanding heavy loads, intense use and extreme weather conditions to provide outstanding availability – indoors and outdoors.

“The contract is further proof of ThyssenKrupp’s expertise in providing infrastructure and mobility solutions for technologically demanding projects,” says Ercan Keles, member of the Executive Board and Chief Financial Officer of the Elevator Technology business area as well as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Turkish company ThyssenKrupp Asansör. “At the same time it reflects our understanding of the customers’ needs in the Turkish market and underlines the Group’s commitment to this strategically important growth region.”

The tunnel is expected to ease traffic congestion in the city and is due to go into operation at the end of October to mark the 90th anniversary of the founding of the Republic of Turkey. The upgraded track and stations will be completed by 2015. Then around 1.5 million passengers a day are expected to use the more than 400 modern trains to commute between the suburbs of Halkalı in the west and Gebze in the east, and Istanbul city center. The estimated total travel time for the 76.6 kilometer link is 104 minutes – approximately 80 minutes shorter than the current trip including Bosphorus ferry.