Havila Kystruten has promoted the building of the Norwegian Stad ship tunnel by holding a one day conference on board the ‘Havila Castor’.
Stad ship tunnel (Stad Skipstunnel) is a huge project led by the Norwegian Coastal Administration (NCA) and its aim is to bypassing the exposed Stadlandet.
The tunnel will be 2.2 km long, 50 m high and 36 m wide, and will be the world’s first fully scaled ship tunnel.
As a result, vessels of the size used on the coastal routes can choose a safe voyage past Stad by using the tunnel.
Stadhavet is the most weather-exposed and most dangerous stretch of sea along the Norwegian coast. With unpredictable waves and strong winds, conditions can create critical situations for passing ships.
Stad Skipstunnel will improve accessibility for sea transport, not least the safety of guests and crew on board, the company said.
Havila has been involved in this project for many years. In addition to increased safety for shipping, Havila Kystruten’s Chairman, Per Sævik, believed that tourism and the local communities will see positive effects from the project.
“For Havila Voyages, this will have two aspects, one is safety that everyone talks about, the other is that we get a new tourism experience that is quite unique in a world context. Properly handled, this opportunity will be the most important impetus for the local area to build up activity and tourism,” Sævik said.
The NCA’s mandate is to ensure that the Norwegian coast is the safest and cleanest in the world. It summarised three ways in which the ship tunnel will contribute to a safer, cleaner Norwegian coast:
- increased safety at sea: establishment of the Stad Skipstunnel reduces the risk of ship accidents, and thus strengthens the safety of maritime traffic at Stadlandet
- more efficiency: Stad Skipstunnnel reduces waiting time for shipping, thus increasing efficiency for sea transport of people and freight
- better access: A safer and more efficient sailing past Stad facilitates more sea transport of goods, and can help strengthen business development.
“The Norwegian Coastal Administration is responsible for all digital and physical infrastructure along the Norwegian coast, which is the world’s second longest after Canada. We are also the project owner for Stad Skipstunnel.
“This is a project that is well known to Havila, Havila Shipping and Havila Voyages, who have all worked for the realisation of this project for many years,” explained NCA Coastal Director, Einar Vik Arset.
“Stad Skipstunnel is primarily a sea safety measure. Now this will be ‘smooth sailing’ through Stad Skipstunnel and I think it will be an experience in itself,” Arset concluded.
Sævik believed that the market significance of a ship tunnel at Stad cannot be valued highly enough, both for the tourism industry and the local community.
“The tunnel, Selja monastery and the Stadt plateau, can in my opinion be Western Norway’s North Cape. So here are unique opportunities handled rightly. In terms of the market, the Stad ship tunnel can hardly be valued highly enough for the significance it can have,” Sævik stressed.