A proposed bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland is "about as feasible as building a bridge to the moon", it has been claimed. “This would be a challenging proposition,” he admits. A bridge from Scotland to Northern Ireland? The distance of the bridge would be 12 miles at its narrowest, while one of the most likely routes for the bridge between Larne in Northern Ireland and Portpatrick in Scotland, is about 28 miles. Video, A man who invited the world over for dinner, Star Wars supports host Arielle after racist abuse, Minister who promoted 'Covid syrup' tests positive, Larry King, veteran talk show host, dies aged 87, Biden apologises over troops sleeping in car park, he understood the idea was being "taken seriously", Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge work 'under way'. Read about our approach to external linking. He also previously told the BBC: "We do have incredibly talented architects and engineers in Scotland so I am sure that as a technical challenge it wouldn't be insurmountable.". The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. The Bromford Viaduct is the longest bridge in the UK, spanning 3.4 miles. As he points out, the Irish Sea ferries are expensive, especially for freight traffic. Yes, according to several experienced bridge engineers and designers. Depending on the number of traffic lanes, he estimates this to be between £20 billion and £30 billion. He agrees a Portpatrick-Larne bridge is “entirely practical and doable”, but to make it worthwhile, the roads on the Scottish side would need to be upgraded. The idea has been floated before with two potential routes suggested - from Portpatrick to Larne or near Campbeltown to the Antrim coast. However, imagine the chaos of a fire or an accident deep inside a tunnel in the middle of the Irish Sea. The aforementioned Oresund Bridge – the inspiration for the Scandinavian and American TV series The Bridge – is one awe-inspiring precedent. “It’s not been done before but we’ve designed similar bridges. Long watch: Is this Russian cult leader a fraud? While a traffic link between Scotland and Northern Ireland may be logistically demanding, there are impressive bridges already in operation elsewhere in the world, albeit on smaller scales. A bridge above the water, on the other hand, would have to be closed in rough weather and poses risks to passing ships. A BRIDGE between Scotland and Ireland could create a “Celtic powerhouse” and cost a fraction of the one proposed by Boris Johnson between England and France, a leading architect has said.. Strait of Gibraltar, linking Morocco to Spain. That honour goes, according to Guinness World Records, to the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge which has 48.3km (about 30 miles) of its span over water. The Scottish government said last year that any such project would require close examination before it could even be considered. "This PM has made no secret of his support for infrastructure projects that increase connectivity for people and particularly those that strengthen the Union.". Tens of thousands of people join some of the largest rallies against President Vladimir Putin in years. One of the potential spans of the bridge – from Kintyre in Scotland to the Antrim Coast, near Torr Head (pictured) is thought the least likely due to the rural infrastructure at either side. © 2021 BBC. ), There are pros and cons to both types of submerged tubes. He suggested two routes: a 12-mile crossing that spans the shortest gap between the two countries – Mull of Kintyre in Scotland to Torr Head, Northern Ireland. Late last year Ireland's premier Leo Varadkar said he would not dismiss the idea of building a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland, but insisted the UK must pay for … A senior Scottish government source has described the bridge proposal as "pie in the sky" and the "usual smokescreen bluster" from Boris Johnson. The Institution of Engineers of Ireland 's 2004 Vision of Transport in Ireland in 2050 imagines a tunnel to be built between the ports of Fishguard and Rosslare. Bridge proposal. How the pandemic has changed the world economy, The paper that helped the homeless. Politicians ready to discuss bridge between NI and Scotland, Long watch: Is this Russian cult leader a fraud? A bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland could bring huge economic benefits to both countries. Cynics might say Boris Johnson’s sudden enthusiasm for a physical link between Britain and Northern Ireland is an attempt to strengthen ties within an increasingly disunited kingdom. Fireball-dropping drones and the new technology helping fight fires, Gaming disorder: The rise of a 21st century epidemic, How Infrared Technology Could Help Fight Wildlife Poaching, Video: Sensation of Movement Recreated in Amputees’ Robotic Arms. They rest on concrete pontoons. The Giant’s Causeway in Antrim. Critics warn of the often tempestuous weather in the Irish Sea, for instance. Architect Alan Dunlop's visualisation of a possible suspension bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland. In February 2020, the Prime Minister's Office announced that it had initiated work to examine the feasibility of bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland. If you’re really struggling with the Ireland vs Scotland debate, why not choose both?When you use this itinerary to travel to Ireland and Scotland you’re getting the best of both wo… “I don’t think there’s been any bridge built with that much depth.”. Then there’s the thorny issue of funding the project. So once the cars have driven across from Scotland to Ireland, you rotate the bridge 180 degrees so that drivers in Ireland can cross to Scotland. Dunlop admits he’s no economist, but he estimates costs of between £15 billion and £20 billion which might eventually be recouped through a toll system. Just how serious the British government is about the bridge remains to be seen. At its shortest, the distance between Scotland and Northern Ireland is 12 miles (Photo: Getty) Being an island has usually been a … The first would make the bridge roughly 35.4 kilometres (22 miles long); the second route is separated by a shorter 19.3 kilometres (12 miles) stretch of … Alan Dunlop is a Scottish architect who, in 2018, was commissioned by a newspaper to analyse the feasibility of such a project. Sources have said the most likely option is between Portpatrick and Larne. Some experts have suggested £15bn might be required for the project but others have said that £20bn would be a "conservative estimate". It credits the 36km (22.4 mile) Hangzhou Bay Bridge as the structure spanning the greatest expanse of open sea. . Dunlop says his route would cross to the north of this, however, where the sea is shallower. The 8km Oresund Bridge combines with an 8km railway tunnel to link Sweden and Denmark. suggested a 21-mile bridge from Dumfries and Galloway could provide international rail links and ease the strain on air services. “Who wants to drive through an underwater tunnel 26 miles long?” He has a point: this is surely perfect material for scriptwriters of disaster movies. Bomb-disposal experts have warned it would be too dangerous to build a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland if it was to involve spanning the vast offshore ... long … Firth believes the third option is most realistic since it avoids the extra cost of towers. Now politicians across the Irish Sea want a 25-mile link between Northern Ireland and Scotland. Just after he became Tory leader the PM was reported to … Video. Pic: AP Photo/Matt Rourke. The shipping density in this part of the Irish Sea (The North Channel) is around 30 vessels a day, according to the Marine Management Organisation. Documents seen by Channel 4 News reveal that the Treasury and … A Portpatrick to Belfast Lough link would be around 21 miles in length, while Antrim to Mull of Kintyre just 12 miles. However, one mega-project that has already started is a 17-mile undersea road tunnel beneath two Norwegian fjords, Boknafjord and Kvitsoyfjord, with a maximum depth of 392 metres. This could have provided a land bridge to south-west Ireland around 11,000 years ago, leading Mitchell to picture "organised woods advancing up a dry coastal strip . Wanting to reduce the border between Scotland and Ireland seems to be highly relevant at the moment. And, to the south, a 26-mile crossing from Portpatrick to Larne. And the engineering involved would be more than a little complicated. The one attached to the sea bed would avoid the risk of ships colliding. Scotland emerged from the First and Second Wars of Scottish Independen… A southern span between Portpatrick and Larne is thought more feasible. He even has experience in Scotland with the Queensferry Crossing over the Firth of Forth. David Davis poured cold water on the idea, saying to Sky News: “He wants to cancel HS2 and spend it … And what about the cost? “The bridge could be constructed with existing and proven technologies, marrying off-shore oil technology with long-span bridge technology,” he explains. Though such long-distance bridges are used in other areas of the world, the case for an Ireland-UK bridge has been deemed impractical due to the depth of the water between Ireland and Scotland… Boris Johnson’s proposal to build a bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland has been given a massive boost. The Kingdom of England, formed in 927, gained the first U.K. state other than itself through invasion. Current proposals include the Fehmarn Belt Fixed Link, a tunnel connecting Denmark to Germany; an undersea rail tunnel across the Gulf of Finland, between Finland and Estonia, which at 30 miles would be the longest undersea tunnel in the world; the Saudi-Egypt Causeway, a causeway and bridge link between the Saudi city of Tabuk and the Egyptian city of Sharm el-Sheikh via the island of Tiran; the Malacca Strait Bridge between Malaysia and Indonesia; a 28-mile railway tunnel between the Russian island of Sakhalin and the Japanese island of Hokkaido; and even a 25-mile rail tunnel beneath the Strait of Gibraltar, linking Morocco to Spain. The first is a multi-span cable-stayed or suspension bridge with its towers standing atop tall oil-rig-style steel or concrete structures resting on the sea bed. Work is under way "by a range of government officials" to look at the idea of building a Scotland-Northern Ireland bridge, No 10 has said. SubscribePrivacy Policy(UPDATED)Terms of ServiceCookie PolicyPolicies & ProceduresContact InformationWhere to WatchConsent ManagementCookie Settings, Oresund Bridge, which links Sweden and Denmark, has been cited as a possible design for a bridge connecting Scotland and Northern Ireland – Boris Johnson's so-called 'Celtic Crossing.'. It's understood one of the options being considered is a bridge which turns into a tunnel, before reverting to a bridge. A series of floating bridges are found on the lake, the longest of their kind on the world. “And there’s the human experience to consider,” Firth adds. The southern route, which would be closer to Belfast and Scotland’s Central Belt is more practical, given the existing road infrastructure on both sides. For bridges on pontoons, the longest example is the Governor Albert D. Rosellini Bridge in the US state of Washington which carries State Route 520 a mile and a half across Lake Washington. And, to the south, a 26-mile crossing from Portpatrick to Larne. Large infrastructure projects create jobs and … around 30 vessels a day, according to the Marine Management Organisation. However, some political will has emerged in recent years. 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There are worries the Portpatrick-Larne route might have to cross a huge undersea trench called Beaufort’s Dyke, up to 300 metres at its deepest section and, according to the Ministry of Defence, filled with over a million tons of dumped munitions from the Second World War, as well as radioactive material. .css-1xgx53b-Link{font-family:ReithSans,Helvetica,Arial,freesans,sans-serif;font-weight:700;-webkit-text-decoration:none;text-decoration:none;color:#FFFFFF;}.css-1xgx53b-Link:hover,.css-1xgx53b-Link:focus{-webkit-text-decoration:underline;text-decoration:underline;}Read about our approach to external linking. When I worked as a regional sales manager for GEC. If there’s still the political and financial appetite after the £1.5 billion in bills have been settled, Rogfast could be the first link in a non-stop road route all the way up Norway’s west coast, with the current fjord ferries eventually replaced by a network of bridges, tunnels beneath the fjord beds, and tunnels submerged below the water surface. But even the non-cynics might not be able to stomach that price tag. Ireland was part of my area. The problem is the cost which would be incredible, even without the towers.” (Although he adds that he hasn’t “the slightest idea” what that cost might be. A new bridge linking Scotland and Northern Ireland could see the two islands getting much closer. He outlines three possible design options. Professor Alan Dunlop was speaking in … The bridge's length would depend upon the route taken; the current consensus is that the route would be between Portpatrick, in Dumfries and Galloway, and Larne in Northern Ireland, placing the proposed length at 45 kilometres (28 mi). We have the engineering expertise to do that.”. “But we have the technology and the talent in Ireland and Scotland to create something as potentially brilliant as this.”, Inevitably, Dunlop’s design has had more than a little scorn poured on it. he would not dismiss the idea of building a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland, but insisted the UK must pay for it. More challenging than the length of such a bridge is the depth of the sea bed – up to 160 metres at its deepest section. Plans for some kind of link - either a tunnel or a bridge - go back as far as the 1890s but, despite much consideration, nothing has ever been built. Known as Rogfast, it began construction last year and is expected to finish in 2026. He has worked on some of the most challenging sea bridges on the planet. . Back in January, a … .css-14iz86j-BoldText{font-weight:bold;}Reports have resurfaced that a bridge from Scotland to Northern Ireland is being considered by the UK government. Dumfries and Galloway Council said it was "certainly not averse" to the proposal being examined but felt there were other "more immediate priorities" for investment. Larne is 34 kms (22.4 miles) from Belfast, while Portpatrick is 152.8 kms (92 miles) from Glasgow and 214 kms (133 miles) from Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh. Featuring a railway and motorway, it first stretches on a cable-stayed bridge almost five miles from the Swedish coast to an artificial island called Peberholm before continuing to the Danish coast through a concrete tunnel set into a trench in the seabed. He stresses that since oil rigs can operate in seas as deep as 3,000 metres, the required technology already exists. Dunlop proposes a cable-stayed or suspension bridge for the shallower sections and a floating pontoon-style bridge (“tied to the sea bed with cables like an oil rig”) for the deeper sections. Problems arise from the bridge’s connection to the main cities in the North of Ireland and Scotland. Of course lake waters are far less choppy than those on the Irish Sea. More than a decade ago the think tank the Centre for Cross Border Studies suggested a 21-mile bridge from Dumfries and Galloway could provide international rail links and ease the strain on air services. The prime minister's official spokesman said there was a "proper piece of work" being carried out by a "range of government officials". First Boris Johnson called for a bridge between France and England. Both the Treasury and the Department for Transport have been asked to look into the financial side of the project. Some of these will prove to be mere pipe dreams. I often get asked by my readers which trip they should take, Ireland or Scotland? The paper that helped the homeless. All three designs have precedents but only on a small scale; nothing nearly as colossal as what would be required to span the Irish Sea. The northern route is unlikely since the ports in question are more remote, and the road improvements needed might end up costing as much as the actual bridge. Boris Johnson and Arlene Foster are both supporters of a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland However, Mr Duncan argues in his letter that a bridge has … The price of any construction would, obviously, be dependent on the route chosen. In the late 13th century, King Edward I conquered the western Principality of Wales, claiming it as a territory of England. Late last year Ireland's premier Leo Varadkar said he would not dismiss the idea of building a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland, but insisted the UK must pay for it. Ireland 'never linked to Scotland' Thu, Sep 9, 2004, 01:00 A land bridge never formed between Ireland and Scotland, according to controversial new research, writes Dick Ahlstrom . Large pre-fabricated deck units would also be brought to site on barges and lifted into place.” Prefabrication on land would make the bridge more durable, he says, with a possible lifespan of 150 years or more. This route would be approximately twice the distance of the English Channel Tunnel at 62 miles (100 km). “The substructures would be constructed in a dry dock, floated out to the site, and then lowered into position. In terms of distance - more than 20 miles for the Portpatrick project - it would not be the longest bridge over water in the world. In Northern Ireland, a proposal was contained in the 2015 DUP manifesto. The Scottish government has said that it is ready to begin discussions over a potential bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland. undersea rail tunnel across the Gulf of Finland, between Finland and Estonia, Sakhalin and the Japanese island of Hokkaido. As well as Oresund and Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau, these include the Temburong Bridge in Brunei, the Mumbai Trans Harbour Link in India and Stonecutters Bridge in Hong Kong. Although the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge is eight miles longer than the proposed Portpatrick-Larne link – and is indeed the longest open-sea fixed crossing in the world – its span is interrupted by four artificial islands, for which the Irish Sea is too deep. “Although submarines would need to watch out.”. Next, he invaded the northern Kingdom of Scotland, kicking off the First War of Scottish Independence (that’s the one in Braveheart). He cites the example of the 4.9-mile Oresund Bridge, linking Sweden to Denmark, which charges a toll and is expected to recoup its costs by the late 2030s. “That was designed and built to withstand typhoons. "There are an obvious number of practical obstacles and challenges to such a concept, and it would require a robust assessment of the costs or benefits of such a project in the first instance.". In my opinion no. As of February 2020, UK Government officials have begun scoping the possible route and type of crossing. "During the leadership campaign candidates spoke about a number of issues which resulted in Number 10 commissions ahead of a new prime minister taking over," it said. “There are rough seas,” Dunlop admits, but then he cites the example of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, a 34-mile series of cable-stayed bridges, an undersea tunnel and four artificial islands which opened in China last year. The third, and most eyebrow-raising of all, is a submerged tube – effectively a tunnel under water – attached to floating pontoons at the surface or tethered by cables to the sea bed below. No, silly. However, are cost and technical issues likely to rule it out before it begins? And a bridge across the 28mile gap between Scotland Northern Ireland has been a plan of his for some time. Mr Johnson has previously put a price of "about £15bn" on building a bridge which could stretch from Portpatrick in Scotland to Larne in Northern Ireland - … We have also seen a small scale political drama relating to suggestions that serious consideration be given to building a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland. You just build the bridge so that it can pivot at the halfway point. PM talks to Biden in first call since inauguration, The homeless addict who became a history professor, The man who invited the world over for dinner. Both styles would be supported by towers standing on top of oil-rig-style frames. It was believed that the bridge, which would go between Portpatrick in Scotland to Larne in Northern Ireland would … "We are always keen to talk about how we can strengthen connections between Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland," a spokesman said. The land bridge between Ireland and Britian was finally overwhelmed by the sea 12,000 years ago, flooding the fresh water Irish Sea with salt water (however, short-term fluctuations did cause the land bridge to reappear briefly on several more occasions). Between logistics and costs, some have dismissed the scheme as unlikely to ever happen. He agrees that the proposed southern crossing of the Irish Sea is the best option, stressing that the 26-mile length is not the most challenging aspect, rather the depth of the sea bed. Two potential routes suggested - from Portpatrick to Larne or near Campbeltown to the of. 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