The idea of building a tunnel to Sakhalin was put forward at the end of the XIX century, however, due to uneconomical and lack of funds has not been implemented. Research on the topic of tunnel construction were undertaken in 1929-1930, respectively.
May 5, 1950 the Council of Ministers of the USSR adopted a resolution on the secret construction of the railway line Komsomolsk-on-Amur - Pobedino on Sakhalin with a tunnel under the Tatar Strait, as well as ferry - as a subsidiary option. A week later, the order of the Minister of the Interior in the GULZhDS created two-dimensional unit: "Building number 506" with the center in Aleksandrovsk and "Building number 507" with the center in De Castries. Together with the institutions directly for the construction of the tunnel "Building number 6 MPS USSR" they formed a system that combined the enormous material resources, manpower and technology. Under the plan the total length of railway line is more than 1000 km, the tunnel - about 10 km. Expects to complete construction of the railway and tunnel crossings in 1955, and two years before the opening through the temporary movement of using the ferry.
Tunnel to be used for military purposes - to supply deployed on Sakhalin units of the Soviet Army. Construction of the tunnel transition was instructed Interior Ministry of the USSR (railway lines) and the Ministry of Railways of the USSR (tunnel work in 1952 and handed over to the Ministry of Internal Affairs).
Specifications for the design of the tunnel and adjacent railways were approved September 6, 1950. In order to accelerate the construction of the road was supposed to build on the simplified (actually - time) scheme, for example, in the early stages of construction permits the use of impregnated sleepers. Detailed engineering and geological surveys in the vicinity of the proposed construction of the tunnel was carried out.
On the territory of Sakhalin length of the railway line from the station to Cape Pobedino Pogibi (the beginning of the tunnel) was to be 327 km. The axis of the tunnel under the Tatar Strait began at the junction died at 23 kilometers away Wangi station was located, from which it is assumed branch in the south-west to Cape Uangi which was built a pier for sea ferries. All on the island part of highway construction planned nine railway stations.
The tunnel of Cape died on Sakhalin to Cape Lazarev on the mainland should be about 10 km, it is the northern route ferry.
On the mainland at the Komsomolsk-on-Amur - Sovetskaya Gavan anticipated construction of a branch from Cape Lazarev Station Selikhino with a branch in a temporary ferry. At the lake Kesey planned construction of traction power.
Completion of construction with the organization of a temporary ferry was scheduled for the end of 1953, and the commissioning of the tunnel - at the end of 1955. The total turnover of the projected line in the first years of its operation envisaged 4 million tons per year.
Construction of railway lines in the tunnel were mostly prisoners of the Gulag. By the beginning of 1953 the total number of railway builders on both sides of the strait was more than 27 000 people. Construction, especially in Sakhalin, conducted in a virtually complete lack of infrastructure and lack of equipment, due to the last-minute nature of the work and living conditions in the camps for prisoners were unsatisfactory even by the standards of the Gulag.
On the mainland was built 120 miles of railroad tracks wide gauge on the right bank of the Amur River from the station to the station Selikhino Black Cape (road then be used to export wood). In the area of intended ferry were paved dams (and their remnants can be seen now), preparatory work for the construction of piers. At Cape Lazarev, where supposed tunneling, shaft was dug, 1.6 km from the shore was poured artificial island with a diameter of 90 m.
On Sakhalin, the work was done in the worst conditions, and no one kilometer railway was built and was not. In the elaboration of the road (excavation, cutting, etc.). Possible to construct a dirt highway Nysh - perish, which in Soviet times was used for the export of timber.