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Norway to Build First-Ever
Sea Tunnel for Ships

A computer-generated depiction of the sea tunnel.
(Photo Credit: Kystverket / Norwegian Coastal Administration)

April 17, 2017

Norway has announced plans to build a first-of-its-kind $310 million mile-long tunnel underneath a mountain pass that will create a shortcut for its passenger and cargo vessels and save them from exposure to severe Arctic storms. After more than a century since it was suggested and years of planning, the tunnel, which is 36 m wide and 49 m tall, will be capable of handling ships weighing up to 16,000 t.

The tunnel will be free for all ships, with vessels given a timeslot like airport traffic with a simple traffic light telling sea captains whether the tunnel is open. Timetabled passenger carriers will receive priority, but anyone with a boat will be allowed to pass through the landmark in time, though all ships will be kept about 400 m apart from each other Construction will begin in 2019 and is scheduled to be completed in three to four years.


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