Cowi Selected as Technical Advisors in the Construction of the World’s First Ship Tunnel in Norway: The First of its Kind

Home » News » Cowi Selected as Technical Advisors in the Construction of the World’s First Ship Tunnel in Norway: The First of its Kind

Construction of the world’s first ship tunnel is taking shape as the project selects Cowi as the project’s technical advisor. The project in Norway is the first of its kind in the world and is one that is highly anticipated. Cowi has been handed a $21M contract to act as the technical advisor on the project. It is to be constructed in the Stad Peninsula in Norway. Costed at $315M in 2021, the Stad Ship Tunnel will be the first full-scale tunnel built specifically for ships.

It will also be the only tunnel in which ships can traverse safely. The client company tasked with the handling, implementation, and delivery of the project is the Norwegian Coastal Administration. The 1.7 km-long Stad Ship Tunnel will cut through the mountainous, inland end of the long Stad Peninsula on Norway’s west coast. This is being done so that ships can avoid having to go around it through the rough Stadhavet Sea.

The Significance of the World’s First Ship Tunnel in Norway

The construction of the world’s first ship tunnel is significant in Norway as it will facilitate cutting the travel length of ships. Once completed, ships will avoid having to go around the rough Stadhavet Sea. First proposed in the 19th century, the project is now taking shape, and construction pressing ahead. The Stad Ship Tunnel project aims to improve the navigability and safety of maritime transport around Stad. This is because it is likely the most weather-exposed and dangerous stretch of sea along the Norwegian coast. Being the first of its kind, projects that are the longest, largest, or first of their kind are usually exciting. Norway Is pleased to be part of the project and expects that it will manifest as expected. The world’s first ship tunnel will also be a major tourist attraction site in Norway, being one of its kind in the world.

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The Scope of Construction on the Stad Ship Tunnel

The world’s first ship tunnel is planned to be built at the narrowest point of the Stad Peninsula. This is between the Moldefjord and Kjødepollen, in the Vanylvsfjord. The tunnel will be 1.7km long (2.2km including entrance areas), 50m high, and will have a width of 36m. It is also It is designed to be 26.5m wide, with 33m headroom.  Furthermore, once completed, it will be able to accommodate 70 to 120 ships a day. Materials will be transported by sea because the roads are not large enough for construction vehicles. Meanwhile, the tunnel itself will be created using a drill and blast method through the gneiss metamorphic rock. However, the tunnel’s construction poses challenges as the tunnel itself needs to be 50m high and 26.5m wide. This is to allow ships to pass through safely.World's first ship tunnel

The Developers/Contractors Involved in the Construction of the Stad Tunnel.

The contract signed with Cowi is a framework agreement for the firm to provide technical consulting services for the world’s first ship tunnel project. The consensus between Cowi and the Norwegian Coastal Administration was agreed upon following a tender process. The Norwegian Coastal Administration noted that Cowi will assist the project with engineering work and consulting in all necessary technical disciplines. Disciplines that the Norwegian Coastal Administration considers especially prevalent for this project include geotechnics, geology, and structures. It also entails technical installations, corrosion, and sustainability/environment. Furthermore, with Cowi being conversant in health, safety, and the environment in tunnel construction, it is a plus for them.

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