What if you could drive from the United States all the way to England? Sound crazy?
A new proposal would see England connected to the United States by a highway bridge as part of a massive superhighway crossing the length of Russia, ultimately linking New York and London.
Called the Trans-Eurasian Belt Development (TEPR), the ambitious project is being proposed by Russian Railways head Vladimir Yakunin.
The route would include some pre-existing roads to reach London and New York, but would still require thousands of miles of asphalt and concrete, and billions of tons of aggregate, across the width of Russia. The road would be built alongside the existing Trans-Siberian Railway – the longest railway in the world.
Connecting the North American and Eurasian continents would also be complicated. The highway would have to span a minimum 55-mile distance between mainland Russia and Alaska, and continue on through the isolated state’s wilderness. About 520 miles separates the closest settlement to Russia – Nome, Alaska – from the nearest major city, Fairbanks, Alaska. From there, drivers could connect to an existing road network to Canada and the lower 48 states.
It is estimated that a drive from London to New York via the TEPR would encompass 12,910 miles. Hopefully the Russian authorities plan on building plenty of rest stops and/or McDonald’s restaurants along the way.
Aside from its grueling length, there’s also the question of how this huge project would be funded. The TEPR would reportedly cost “trillions of dollars,” but Yakunin is apparently a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin, and could potentially use that influence to get the project rolling.
Don’t start planning the road trip just yet, but this might be one to watch if you absolutely can’t stand flying or sailing. And better yet, there’s also talk of a high-speed rail line along the same path.
We won’t be holding our breath, but we will be keeping an eye on this one.