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  • Arild Søvik

Investigating a fixed link between the Channel Islands and mainland France

In March 2024, Norwegian Tunnelling Network, represented by Network Director Arild Petter Sovik and Professor Eivind Grov from SINTEF, together with Teitur Samuelson, CEO of Eystur- og Sandoyartunlar (Faeroe island), presented insights from sub-sea tunnelling in Norway and the Faeroe Islands in a contribution to the discussions on new fixed links between Guernsey and Jersey and Jersey and mainland France.

Illustration by Arild Petter Sovik, the Norwegian Tunnelling Network/ Sovik Consulting

The fixed links will most likely be two sub-sea rock tunnels, each approximately 30 km long, which provide an inter-island connection and connect to mainland France. This solution has good potential for a positive impact on economic growth, environment, and future development for the Channel Islands and the local region of Normandy. In addition, the sub-sea link will connect to vital infrastructure functions, like passenger hubs and cargo terminals, in both islands and mainland France. 

«A fixed link between Guernsey and Jersey is more than just an infrastructure project. It is a social, economic and environmental project with the potential to transform the lives and prospects of citizens, businesses and society..»

The Connect 3 Million initiative

From the Norwegian Tunnelling Network’s point of view, the overall conditions that will influence the technical part of planning and constructing the fixed links are similar to what has been experienced in Norway. Available but limited information at hand today on the geological conditions provided so far and seen on the island outcrops indicates that the ground conditions are quite similar to those faced in sub-sea projects in Norway in particular, but also in the Faeroe Islands. However, as experienced in Norway and the Faeroe Islands, fault zones and areas of geological concern need to be investigated, particularly in the areas between the islands and the mainland.

Read more about this in Norwegain Tunnelling Networks article (link).

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