Tunnel under Maastricht to slash drive times; Opens tonight

Koning Willem-Alexander tunnel underneath Maastricht
Koning Willem-Alexander tunnel underneath Maastricht@RWS_ZN / Twitter

The Koning Willem-Alexander tunnel under Maastricht is opening to traffic tonight. The intention is that this 2.4 kilometer long tunnel will put an end to an era of long traffic jams on the A2 highway in the city, NOS reports. 

According to Rijkswaterstaat, the tunnel will take about 80 percent of the traffic currently traveling along Maastricht, and will therefore make a significant improvement to the rush hour situation on the A2. 

It took about 5 years to build this tunnel, that consists of two floors and four "tubes". "The bottom two is for the passing through traffic that is driving past Maastricht on the A2. The upper tubes are for local traffic that want to get on or off the A2 here." chief engineer Robberse said to NOS. 

Minister Melanie Schultz van Haegen of Infrastructure and Environment will officially open the tunnel at 11:00 p.m. on Thursday. The tunnel will be accessible to traffic from Friday.