Well I cracked it all, from the city centre up to Vistula river. Miles and miles of dusty tunnels…
Warsaw Metro system has a very interesting history. Plans to build an underground rail system in Warsaw date as far back as 1918, when the idea was first floated in reaction to Warsaw regaining its status as Poland’s capital city. Then again in 1950’s as the Cold War raged on, Soviet strategic plans required that a secure transport link across the river Vistula be built. One of the ways to achieve this was to create a deep metro system in Warsaw (up to 150 feet (46 m) beneath the ground), which would be interlinked with the rail network and could serve as an underground conduit for transporting troops.By 1953 only 771 metres (843 yd) of tunnels had been built, however, after the death of Joseph Stalin and the start of a period of detente, all works were halted under the pretext of technical difficulties. In following years, only one junction tunnel and one shield-driven tunnel were continued to be constructed. Finally, in 1957, all the work was halted and tunnels flooded. Finally Metro Line 1 was opened in 1995 with a total of 11 stations. The line now has 21 stations along a distance of approximately 20 kilometres (12 mi).
Metro Line 2 construction started in August 2010 and the expected completion date is autumn 2014. This line will be built using a different boring technology which should allow for much faster construction, compared to the first line. The rest of the line, which will consist of 28 stations in total, will be built later.
And the story is:
It was just another crazy night in Warsaw. After climbing the Holy Cross Bridge, still full of adrenaline, I decided to check out Warsaw Metro 2 line. I had it planned for ages. I spent hours checking out capitol live view cameras, some of them are showing metro building sites. And finally I was there, on a busy, weekend night. Alone, with no idea how I gonna make it. I got in contact with some Polish explorers, hoping that they tried to get inside the tunnels, but all info I got was that the workers and security are on site 24/7, and it’s impossible to avoid them. Oh well it didn’t look good.
I started looking for the way in by the ONZ Roundabout (C10 on the map. It took me ages to find the way in. Workers were everywhere, construction site was well lit up and every section had a security huts by the gates or in the middle. At some point I found a quiet looking one, jumped over the fence run towards the shaft and then heard some noises coming from the hole, still hoping for no workers down there took two quick shots to find out what’s happening below me and unfortunately it was a no go.
Finally I found another section (half way between C12 and C13 on the map), with few workers operating a huge concrete mixer, but far enough from the scaffold which took me down below the street level. My heart was pounding like crazy when I climbed down the stairs, still hearing workers above me. Few levels down I was inside the tunnels. I made it, but soon after I realised how mad was my plan.Two levels below the street level:
It all felt so surreal, tunnels looked just beautiful. Totally overwhelmed I walked towards the lines crossing, where I hoped to find the way into line 1.
And well it was there, few sensors and which was worse – workers on tracks. I spent over 5 hours walking down the tunnels,taking photos and admiring the place.
Had to crawl to avoid the workers – few sections were quite busy.
That’s how my journey looked like. Miles of tunnels:
Some parts were flooded:
As I said before it was a mad plan to enter this busy, live site and it was only a question of time when I would get trapped in there. And I did... I was already by the other site of Vistula river (between C13 and C14) when I saw workers in the front of me, in the tunnel. I turned back, and already in panic I started walking , still hoping that I would be able to get to the place where I climbed down the scaffold. I desperately tried to calm myself down, and I was sort of fine until first I heard a motor noise and then I saw truck lights coming towards me. And I was still in the tunnel. And the only way to avoid the truck was to get to the section I crawled past before to avoid some workers. It took me about 10 maybe even 5 minutes to leave the tunnels, the longest minutes in my life hahahaha. I just didn’t stop, walked past the totally confused workers, somebody asked me – what am I doing there – and I said – well I’m leaving, didn’t want them to ask me anymore questions, didn’t want to run, just want to finally feel the fresh air. And I made it, I don’t really know how. And I filmed my way out, from the moment I saw the truck in the tunnel. I thought that it wouldn’t be possible to leave, but I still had to try…
A few months later I tried my luck again. This time I only had 5 hours in Warsaw so it needed to be done quick :). I checked the shaft that I used before, but it was a no go this time. It took me a while to find a way in…And again I made it :) it was a bit tricky, cause I had to sneak past a security guy, that was sitting asleep in his hut… I didn’t spend long in the tunnels this time.
First went towards the river side, wanted to see what has changed since my last time there. Most tunnels looked nearly finished, stations were still under construction.
And I found what I was looking for – crossover – between both lines – old line 1 and new line 2.
Crossover looked just amazing: Unfortunately workers were on track in line 1.
Well there is always another time… So I finally cracked whole metro line 2. Happy times :)