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Switzerland is a world leader in railway commuting, with a railway network extending to 5,124 km. In 2016 the world's longest railway tunnel, the so-called Gotthard rail link, will run 57 km through the Alps, and will cut the current travel time from Zurich to Milano by about one hour.
Thus, Switzerland is an important part of the growing European high-speed transport network. High speed connecting trains like the French TGV or the German ICE bring cities such as Paris, Lyon, Ulm, Stuttgart or Munich closer to Swiss residents. In 2011, every Swiss resident took the train 50 times and travelled approximately 2400 km, which is the world's highest number of kilometers travelled yearly per inhabitant.
The well-developed and well-used railway system helps Swiss residents to avoid excessive driving, thus contributing to an ecologically sound environment. In bigger cities, just over 50% of all inhabitants own a vehicle.