Rare crystals worth 100.000 francs discovered in second Gotthard Tunnel

Rare crystals worth 100.000 francs discovered in second Gotthard Tunnel

When digging underground in Europe, it is common to find interesting items buried just underneath the surface, whether it be the remains of a Viking capital in York or old artefacts discovered when the North-South metro line was built in Amsterdam. Now, an explosion done as part of construction work on the new second Gotthard Road Tunnel has revealed crystals worth more than 100.000 Swiss francs.

Controlled explosion at the Gotthard revealed stunning gems

At the end of September 2022, a controlled explosion at the Gotthard construction site revealed a deposit of stunning crystals and minerals, according to the mineral supervisory authority in Canton Uri. Construction on the second road tunnel started in late September, with the new section of motorway set to be completed by 2029 at a cost of 2,14 billion Swiss francs.

At over 300 metres below the surface of the mountain, the controlled explosion revealed a chasm full of precious minerals. As the explosion occurred late on Friday, authorities were able to secure several hundred kilograms of crystals from the site before working hours resumed on Monday. 

Pink fluorites and quartz worth more than 100.000 Swiss francs

According to 20 minuten, a number of quartz crystals and pink fluorites were recovered, with Peter Macher from Geo-Uri noting that "the discovery of the pink fluorite is undoubtedly one of the best in Switzerland for years." Speaking to the newspaper, a spokesperson from the canton said the collection is worth more than 100.000 Swiss francs.

However, instead of putting the gems on the market, Canton Uri is planning to exhibit the crystals to the public, most likely at Schloss A Pro in Seedorf. The beautiful gems will be put on display in the castle as soon as possible, but authorities were quick to say that they need to be cleaned and set first, a process that will take “some time.”

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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