The concept of tunnel-based transit is not new as many countries are using tunnels for improving their transportation system for many decades. But it is gaining popularity all over the world, in developed as well as developing countries, since the last few years due to increasing population and demand and price of open land. These tunnels are used as an alternative way to reach somewhere without facing heavy traffic. According to various studies, tunnel-based transit offers a number of environmental and financial benefits directly as well as indirectly.
Direct benefits of transit through tunnels
The direct benefit of tunnel-based transit system is that it allow drivers to save lots of fuel and time. It can also help in reducing air pollution, especially during peak hours.
Indirect benefits of transportation through tunnels
Indirectly tunnel-based transit can help to reduce the noise and emission of greenhouse gases as compared to other options. Other benefits of using tunnels for transportation may include redirecting the traffic from the congested centers of the cities, using underground land efficiently, reducing air pollution from residential areas and reducing damage to the landscape by making roads on the open spaces available on the land.
Main reasons to opt for tunnel based transit in developed countries
The constant increase in demand for open land in cities and increasing the cost of building roads on the open land has encouraged the engineers to use the underground land for building infrastructure for transportation and municipal use. While constructing infrastructure underground you can construct the things which were impossible, difficult, less profitable and not desired to be installed on the land for environmental reasons. While working underground you get protection from thermal, acoustic, mechanical and environmental effects. It also saves you from the disturbances and risks of damaging the aesthetics of the landscape and increasing air pollution.
Other reasons to adopt a tunnel-based transit system by developed countries may include:
Increasing population density
The population has increased in urban areas all over the world due to increasing urbanization. It has increased the demand for space to live as well as for various services to make living easy. Due to increasing population density in the cities, the land is used intensively which has increased its price considerably. So to solve this problem it was preferred to use underground land for various types of uses including constructing infrastructure for transportation and municipal facilities.
Isolation and insulation
When you use underground land for constructing facilities you get isolated from the environmental conditions including pollution and noise. It can also provide you insulation from heat emitted by the systems and buildings. In this way you need not worry about saving energy as your need for heating and cooling will reduce considerably.
The easy adaptation of climatic changes
According to various studies conducted on the tunnel-based transit system in Israel, it has been revealed that it can make it easier to adapt the climatic changes as you need not deal with dryness and warming while using various stools for drilling and other works while creating tunnels. Though extensive research in this regard is still pending but going underground can be the best solution for the problems faced on the ground surface in the big cities. They further said that facilities, as well as civilians, can strategically be saved by using underground facilities especially at the time of emergencies like bombings, etc.
A good alternative to traditional roads
The growth in population and the living standards has increased the level of motorization in the towns. It has not only increased the number of vehicles on the ground but also the use of fossil fuels and pollution in the air which in turn is affecting the health of the people living and working there. For this reason, various engineering methods have been used to develop tunnels for decreasing traffic congestions, consumption of fuel, air pollution and travel time along with improving the flow of traffic.
Reduction in pollution from transportation
There is a great connection between the pollution created by the transportation of the vehicles and the health problems of severe nature like respiratory problems, cardiopulmonary diseases, and lung cancer, etc. According to WHO, on-road deaths worldwide are caused more due to the emissions exhausted by the vehicles than accidents occurring thereon. The emissions of the vehicles contain nitrogen oxides, particulate matter and volatile compounds of organic nature. All these things collectively pollute the air and make it harmful not only for the health of the people but also for the life of the materials and buildings. This air pollution can also damage the crops by negatively affecting the entire eco-system including water and soil. Air pollution caused by vehicles can also be one of the main reasons for a number of health problems, especially in developing countries. Most of the children in developing countries are suffering from respiratory problems due to increasing air pollution created by vehicles. So, tunnel-based transit can help in reducing these problems to a great extent.
Reduction in noise from traffic
While driving vehicle noise is generated, which can affect the life of a large number of people living or working nearby the high traffic roads. People living or working most of the time of their life near the junctions and main roads can be affected greatly by the noise pollution created by the vehicles running on them. This noise pollution will not only affect the quality of their life but also the value of their properties. The amount of noise pollution created by the vehicles running on the ground also depends on various other factors like types of vehicles, the volume of traffic, type of traffic flow, speed of driving vehicles, maintenance of the vehicles and their age. You can easily get isolated from this noise pollution by using tunnel-based transit system built underground. Thus, you can easily decrease the traffic congestions and noise pollution just by redirecting the traffic through the underground tunnels.
In this way, the tunnel-based transit system can be very beneficial for the people living in big towns. It can save lots of time and money of the people living and working there along with keeping healthy and fit by keeping them away from air and noise pollution.