3D Laser Scan Shows London's Abandoned Underground Mail Rail Network

By Jamie Condliffe on at

Beneath the streets of London, an underground rail network once existed to shuttle mail around the city. The facility was commissioned in 2003, but this 3D laser scan serves to save its existence for posterity.

The network was used for 76 years and was in fact home to the world's first driverless, electrified railway. But the site — beneath one of the mail sorting facilities in Paddington — is set to become a museum dedicated to the subject of the postal past. These tunnels will become routes for a train that visitors to ride, so the UK-based ScanLAB Project was called in to preserve them in their current state using 3D laser scans. Capturing the scene at millimetre resolution, the result shows the space as it was left, with tools, office detritus and even dartboards littering the depths. [ScanLAB Project via New Scientist]

Image by ScanLAB Projects