Georgia completes longest tunnel to border with Russia

Maria Novoselova / Vestnik Kavkaza

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Kobakhidze attended an event celebrating the completion of the construction of the Kvesheti-Kobi tunnel, the longest in the country built to facilitate reduced travel time on the domestic North-South Corridor.

According to Kobakhidze, the 9-km long and 15-metre-wide tunnel was a “project of the future”.

The tunnel section is a part of the Corridor passing along the riverbed of Tetri Aragvi along a 7-km section and through Arakveti village, before a hairpin section near Kvemo Mleta. The road passes through Gudauri, crosses Jvari pass and ends in Kobi village.

The construction of two-lane, 23-km-long asphalt concrete road also includes five bridges and tunnels, and renovation of another bridge. The project also envisages the construction of a new 5-km-long road to Gudauri and a tourist centre.

"Currently, it takes an hour to travel from Kvesheti to Kobi, and due to the danger of avalanches, traffic is often prohibited. However, after the completion of this project, it will only take 15 minutes to safely pass through the section, resulting in a 45-minute reduction in travel time”, Kobakhidze said.

Georgian Infrastructure Minister Irakli Karseladze said residents of 10 villages of the Khadi valley would be able to “maintain their connection with the outside world” during adverse winter season thanks to a newly carved Kvesheti-Kobi tunnel.

© Photo :Maria Novoselova / Vestnik Kavkaza