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World’s first tunnel for large ships

The Norwegian government has announced plans to build the world’s first tunnel for large ships, a project aimed at helping navigate a dangerous section of the south-western coast.

On Friday, the government unveiled the 10-year transport plan, announcing it would provide one billion kroner ($A166 million) for the construction of the Stad maritime tunnel.

The passageway will be 1.7 km long, and carved into a piece of the peninsula’s mountainside, SMH reported.

"The project will help increase safety and navigability" in the region, the government said


With an estimated const of 1.6 billion kroner, construction will begin in 2018 and take four years.

"It will be the first tunnel in the world that can be used by big boats like cargo ships or the Coastal Express," the famed tourist ship that cruises along the Norwegian coast, said Ottar Nygaard, mayor of the small town of Selje and the head of the project.

According to a study by the specialised company Nordvest Fjordservice, the waters of the Stad peninsula have seen 46 accidents and near-accidents and 33 deaths since the end of World War II.

Image: SMH

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