Need to get to London from the U.S. but not a fan of boats or planes? Then why not take a road trip? If the new super highway proposed by Vladimir Yakunin, president of Russian railways goes through, you may be able to do so. The proposed plan is for a new trans-Siberian motorway that would run from London, through Moscow and cross the Beirstrait, making it possible to travel through Alaska and as far as New York. It would also trump the Pan-American highway as the world longest drivable road.


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A Real Stretch Of A Roadway
The Trans-Eurasion Belt Development has been described as “…an inter-state, inter-civilization, project. It should be an alternative to the current model, which has caused a systemic crisis,” by Yakunin during a recent meeting at Moscow’s Russian Academy of Science. So far the estimated cost of the project is in the trillions, which, also according to Yakunin, is justifiable based on anticipated returns. Running along side the historic trans-Siberian rail route and areas far beyond, the new roadway would need to cross, at minimum, 55 miles of ocean between Alaska and Russia and some of the most treacherous and harshest parts of the globe.


A Road Trip For A New Millennium?
The Trans-Eurasion Belt Development would be a massive undertaking, And while it may conjure up notions of a Route 66 or Autobahn for a new millennium and new global population, a lot of people are asking why? What are the real benefits of connecting these parts of the world via roadway? Is it purely for adventurous travelers and to provide an alterative to air and sea travel? Of all the nations it will connect, will some benefit over others? Is it too much of a risk when international relationships and conflicts have become some volatile and complex?

The Why Behind The Plan
Moscow State University Rector, Victor Sadovnichy, who—along with fellow academic Gennady Osipov,—have partnered with Yakunin in the proposed project gave an interesting reason for providing this type of automotive accessibility. It’s hope that the roadway would encourage integration of people from remote areas and people from more populated, urban locations. “The main problem that we discussed was isolation,” Sadovnichy said, “Up to 30% of talented young people graduating from schools leave these regions.”


Will This New Plan End Up With The Old Ones?
So is the retention of college-educated citizens in Russia enough to make this proposal a reality.  When you consider the ban on western travelers entering Siberia from the Bering Strait and numerous other legal and security concerns, as well as the resources and logistics of making the massive stretch easy, safe, affordable, and accessible enough for the average traveler, the roadway seems like even more of a stretch.

But tell us what you think. The idea of connecting Alaska to Russia isn’t new, so is this best way to do it thus far? Would you want to travel on such a roadway? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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