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Feasibility study underway for £20bn Irish Sea bridge

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February 10 2020

Feasibility study underway for £20bn Irish Sea bridge

A feasibility study has been launched by the UK government which could potentially see a 20-mile bridge built between Northern Ireland and Scotland.

The scoping exercise will examine whether a physical connection is achievable, by what means and by what route, as well as attempt to quantify costs for the mammoth project which could be at least £20bn.

A government spokesperson said: “The Prime Minister is ambitious in terms of infrastructure projects. He is looking at a wide range of schemes across the United Kingdom which could boost connectivity.

“There is a proper piece of work being carried out into the idea.”

The most likely route for any crossing is speculated to be between Portpatrick and Larne, utilising a combination of bridges and tunnels to tame intervening geography, notably a 2-300m deep marine trench known as Beaufort's Dyke.

Complicating the engineering assessment further is the presence of conventional, nuclear and chemical waste dumped during the 1950s.

10 Comments

Gandalf the Pink
#1 Posted by Gandalf the Pink on 10 Feb 2020 at 14:59 PM
Let me predict the future...

'The feasibility study has been completed at a cost of £20m. It is not feasible.'

Boris Island - no.
Boris Bridge - no.
Boris water cannons - no.
Boris - no.
howardthecynic
#2 Posted by howardthecynic on 10 Feb 2020 at 15:06 PM
A further gaze inot a crystal ball predicts.
Such a bridge is feasible (but will cost £20bn (x2))
Ireland won't pay towards it as it is a bruidge between two British nations.
Boris expects Scotland and NI to pay.
Thats the feasibility study costs £2m and tells us that anything is possible because thats the answer they were given to work to.
Boris bashes naysayers as unpatriotic.
Further study says that to spend £20bn (£40bn really) on free/ subsidised travel between the UK and NI would be a better way of spending money.
Neil C
#3 Posted by Neil C on 10 Feb 2020 at 16:13 PM
#2 - I'm sure the Irish Government would warmly welcome the prospect of direct road/rail links to its nearest neighbour and one of its biggest importing and exporting partners. They wouldn't pay for the bridge, but they might contribute towards it.

I'd be delighted to see a bridge built, but since we can't even get GARL, this seems like a fantasy project rather than a feasibility study. Also, neither of the proposed routes is particularly practical on the Scottish side. Portpatrick is a compact village with narrow streets two hours from the fringes of Glasgow, while the cheaper Kintyre option relies on the A83, which would be totally unsuited to supporting cross-border traffic volumes without extortionately expensive upgrading.
David
#4 Posted by David on 10 Feb 2020 at 17:21 PM
I would much rather see the Glasgow metro scheme realised in its entirety. The bridge is a nice idea, but there are other more urgent infrastructure projects that are needed!
Metroman
#5 Posted by Metroman on 11 Feb 2020 at 06:43 AM
#4 metro expansion not really possible with Glasgows low population density. Needs large scale development to bring people back into the city - entire city blocks - not just the odd building or two.
Awks
#6 Posted by Awks on 11 Feb 2020 at 08:27 AM
Is it not going to be awkward when the UK pays for this to stand as some sort of physical tie between two of the UK nations (China/Hong Kong comes to mind) when ultimately at least one of them leaves the UK in the near future given the current political climate both here and across the green waters?
Border Force
#7 Posted by Border Force on 12 Feb 2020 at 11:30 AM
Which end gets the border checkpoint?
mick
#8 Posted by mick on 12 Feb 2020 at 14:13 PM
I have to observe that all of the above comments unfortunately emanate from individuals who appear to take politicians seriously. Therein lies the danger, present politicians out of Westminster have no more integrity than those of Holyrood or Stormont. Ego trippers travelling on fantasy journeys funded by taxpayers and hopefully their discussions will in time be seen as the corporeal residue of an extinct species.
rawk on
#9 Posted by rawk on on 12 Feb 2020 at 14:53 PM
Right on Mick.
David
#10 Posted by David on 17 Feb 2020 at 12:59 PM
#5, the Connectivity Commission certainly doesn't seem to think so, hence the proposal for a city wide metro.

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