Construction works have started in Genoa on Italy’s first undersea road tunnel, set to become Europe’s largest immersed tunnel.

The Undersea Road Tunnel is designed to improve access between the city and the Port of Genoa. Demolition work has commenced near the planned western entrance.

The 3.4km-long tunnel will comprise two tubes, each 16m wide, and will lie 45m below sea level. It is scheduled to open in 2029.

The new tunnel is part of a €1bn urban regeneration project for the Ligurian capital. Under a masterplan created by Renzo Piano Building Workshop, the tunnel surface will provide 10ha of new urban parks and cycle lanes.

The client is Autostrade per l’Italia (ASPI) and Italian construction company Amplia will carry out the first stage of the planned works.