The Karaköy Tunnel is the first metro of our tunnel country which connects Beyoğlu and Galata in Istanbul.
The idea of opening a tunnel here was first introduced by a French tourist who was very tired when Galata slum went out. A French engineer named Henri Gavan who came to Istanbul in 1867 came to Istanbul again in 1869 and took the privilege of this job. He started looking for the capital to open the tunnel. At the end of the day the company was founded by the British in agreement with «The Metropolitan Railway of Constantinople from Galata to Pera».
The soil that emerged during the excavation of the tunnel was pitched down the hillside in Tepebaşı. The excavation work is over in 1874. The 626 meter long tunnel (metro) started to work. It was accepted as the world’s second subway after London metro.
The sides of the first tunnel cars were open, and there were no electricity fixtures, so they were lit up with gas lamps. When the first flights started, direct transport of people was not considered appropriate, animals were transported first. The tunnel was opened with a ceremony on January 17, 1875, when no accident was found . In this period, almost all of the passengers went to the stand.
The passengers enter by turnstile method, the ones who give 10 one-time toll passes, turn around. The people wanted this new way so that the company, which cost 170,000 British liras with tunnels, provided 50,000 gold profits in one year.
The operation of the tunnel operated by the companies for a long time passed in 1939 to İETT administration.
Beyoglu Tunnel’s Features
The tunnel is 6,60 meters wide and has two lines. At the same time, wagons from both sides move on these rails. Tunnel wagons are run from steel to knitted belts. Beyond the terminal in Beyoğlu in the past, 150 horses on the ground floor of the building on the other side of the street gave the power to pull two steam car wagons. Two large impellers were attached to this machine. When the machines began to work, one wore a steel cord and released the other. The electric line lighting in the tunnel gives the electricity needed to open and close the doors.
Experts frequently examine steel cables that attract wagons. They check to see if their durability is diminishing. There have been six accidents due to the cable break up to now. However, there has been no accident in Beyoğlu Tunnel for a long time.