For much of recorded history, the Bering Strait has been viewed as the potential location for a bridge or tunnel between Russia and the Seward Peninsula in the U.S. state of Alaska. But there were never any actual plans in place to make that vision a reality.
It’s been seen as almost a dream project, but now there appears to be at least a chance that a mega highway from the easternmost border of Russia to the westernmost corner of Alaska will be built.
In addition, plans are in place to construct new connecting roadway all across Russia that would create a continuous route from Europe to the United States.
Plans for just such a road were approved recently by Vladimir Yakunin, president of Russian Railways.
Starting from the Chukotka Peninsula in Russia and ending at the Seward Peninsula in the U.S. state of Alaska, the eastern portion of the freeway would cover roughly 20,147 kilometers (12,518 miles). It would provide the first-ever land connection between North America and Asia.
The distance between Russia’s western and eastern borders alone is about 9.977 kilometers (6200 miles). So, constructing the inter-Russian part of the highway will in itself be a Herculean task.
But don’t underestimate the Russians’ ability to follow through with construction on a grand scale. After all, they did complete the venerable and storied Tran-Siberian railway line. It was finished in 1916 and is still running to this day.
If built as conceived, the super highway would start from the United Kingdom, cross the English Channel to the northwest corner of France, and then take you through six European countries as it wound east to the Russian heartland: France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Poland and Belarus.
But the Russians know it won’t be easy. They admit the cost of completing what is referred to officially as the Trans-Asian Belt Development would be trillions of dollars. Along with the road, plans include expansive additional improvements involving another railway, oil and gas pipelines, and electricity and water supply facilities.
It would be the largest infrastructure project ever undertaken.