Norway has given the go ahead to the Stad Ship Tunnel, the world’s first full scale ship tunnel, bypassing one of the most dangerous areas for vessels along the Norwegian coast.
The tunnel will be blasted through 1.7 kilometres of rock at the narrowest point of the Stad Peninsula. The route is actually not expected to save that much time, but is intended to allow for a more safe navigation of the Stadhavet Sea, where the North and Norwegian Seas meet. This area is considered to be one of the most exposed and dangerous areas for vessels to sail along the Norwegian Coast. There is a dangerous combination of wind, currents, waves, and more than 100 storms per year. Since the end of WWII some 33 people have lost their lives in this area.
The Norwegian Government has approved the full funding of the project of 2.7 billion NOK, lasting until 2029. Construction will involve conventional blasting using underground drilling rigs and pallet rigs, used to remove approx 3million cubic meters of solid rock. When completed the tunnel will be 1.7 k long, 37 m high, and 26.5 meters wide.
The Stad Ship Tunnel will serve as a safe route for ships, but also should also be a popular tourist attraction with potential overhead viewing areas open to the public.