New undersea mega-project for the Faroe Islands

Work to prepare for the construction of the ultra-ambitious subsea tunnel between the remote southern islands of Sandoy and Suðuroy will continue in 2019, reports Faroese news webpage In.fo.

The current left-wing government, which yesterday presented the proposed national budget for the fiscal year 2018-19, has earmarked DKK 500.000 for geological investigations in 2019 – and another DKK 500.000 in 2020, writes In.fo.

The Faroese government states that tunnelling work between the islands of Sandoy and Suðuroy will start after construction of the undersea-tunnel between the islands of Streymoy and Sandoy is completed in 2023.

It is noteworthy that the southern subsea tunnel between the villages of Sandur and Sandvík will also connect the sparsely populated island of Skúvoy to the mainland.

There are currently two undersea tunnels in the Faroe Islands.

The first of these tunnels, Vágatunnilin, opened in 2002. It connects the island with the only airport in the Faroe Islands directly to the mainland, stretching 4.940 metres between the islands of Vágoy and Streymoy. The second underwater tunnel, Norðoyartunnilin, was completed in 2006. It measures 6.186 metres in length and connects the island of Borðoy, which is home of the second largest municipality in the Faroe Islands, to the mainland.

In 2014, the Faroese Parliament unanimously decided to build an additional two subsea tunnels from the main island of Streymoy. One will shorten the drive to Eysturoy while the other will connect to Sandoy.

In February 2017 the drilling process of the Eysturoy undersea tunnel started, marking the start of the biggest infrastructure expansion in Faroese history. The tunnel, which is expected to be completed by 2020, will shorten the travel distance between the two largest islands, Streymoy and Eysturoy, from 55 kilometres to 17 kilometres.

Author: Jens Hákun Leo