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Old September 17th, 2019, 03:36 AM   #141
bazza667
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ESPImperium View Post
It may have started a joke, but I'm sure this will become government policy before long. Boris has a habit of making jokes a reality and providing employment.
It will no doubt be as successful as his new routemaster buses and Thames Estuary Airpot
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Old September 17th, 2019, 07:01 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by Vyking View Post
You also have to factor in surface improvements either side of a bridge.

The Irish side isn't too bad, but the Scottish side would require major upgrades to either the A75 or A77 (or both) to expressway standard at least. Portpatrick is 75 miles from the nearest motorway.
Ok, taking this semi-seriously, if they did someone overcome the engineering issues of building this link across the channel, I would suspect the actual surface link to it would more likely be an express train link rather than a major motorway. So, just like the Channel Tunnel, have cars/lorries loaded onto the trains to go over the link.

You can then have the 'portal station' closer to existing major motorways. Maybe even have the 'entrance' in Glasgow with a high speed rail link between Belfast, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
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Old September 19th, 2019, 01:21 AM   #143
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This would be an incredibly ambitious and complex project, but it would serve a relatively small population (compared to England and France with the Chunnel, for example). Therefore I think it’s unlikely to happen in our lifetimes.

However it’s a wonderfully romantic idea, so let’s entertain it for a second:

First thing: where the ideal crossing point? I believe Portpatrick to Bangor is best, as it serves the largest population catchment, of Belfast, Glasgow, Edinburgh and actually Newcastle too (notwithstanding local infrastructure upgrades needed on both sides). Plus there are the onward routes to Dublin.

The Mull of Kintyre to North Antrim option is a shorter span but more remote population-wise, and would need even more substantial infrastructure upgrades on both sides. In fact it would likely require additional crossings via the Isle of Arran, negating the original advantages of the shorter span.

So let’s go with Portpatrick to Bangor. Next, let’s consider the sea floor…Comparisons have been made with the Hangzhou Bay Bridge in China, which is 35km in length. However, this was in shallow water, being only about 15m deep. The Irish Sea, meanwhile, is substantially deeper, and features the Beaufort Dyke which is 200-300m in depth, with a width of 3.5km. Moreover, the Dyke was used as a weapons dump following WWII - estimates are of about 1m tons of weapons down there, and some nuclear waste also.

Assuming all of this hazardous waste can be removed, each bridge pier in the Dyke would have to be around the height of the Shard below water. I don’t believe there is any bridge in the world which currently achieves this. However, the Troll A natural gas platform in the North Sea may be a comparison: it is 472m in height and was (and still is) an engineering marvel when it opened in the 1990s. So you would need to replicate this engineering marvel several times for the Northern Ireland to Scotland bridge - let’s say 4 or 5 times, if the piers are 1km apart over the Dyke. The other section of sea aren’t much easier either, often being 120-160m in depth.

So overall, not easy. The bridge would be wonderful idea of course, and reframe our sense of geography between Northern Ireland and Scotland. But I think a second Channel Tunnel is more likely to happen (which could in fact be delivered in our lifetimes). Even a tunnel from Holyhead to Dublin is more likely to happen, since it gives Dublin the opportunity to plug in to all of the English cities in the Northern Powerhouse Rail corridor, and even Dublin-Birmingham
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Old October 21st, 2019, 01:10 PM   #144
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The (Tory) Think Tank Policy Exchange has just published a wide range of ideas for improving the state of the Union.

https://policyexchange.org.uk/wp-con...ing-the-UK.pdf

"The UK Government should examine the business case for a toll-free road bridge between the Island of Ireland and Great Britain"

Théorie du complot du jour
Do you think that somebody somewhere is reading our contributions, stealing our homework and passing it off as their own? (Note the cunning "toll free" journalistic click-bait insert).
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Old October 22nd, 2019, 12:25 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by Mwmbwls View Post
Do you think that somebody somewhere is reading our contributions, stealing our homework and passing it off as their own? (Note the cunning "toll free" journalistic click-bait insert).
I don't think so. I they did read this thread they would know that a road bridge is pretty much a non-starter.

If anything it would be rail link. Or rather a hyper-loop as most likely nothing will be build in this century
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Old October 27th, 2019, 01:37 PM   #146
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Well saying the depth of the dyke is 300m is one thing, but the true obstacle is actually how wide it is.
I found this geology survey on the web and of the crossing itself and it’s a lot narrower than I thought it would be, but I can’t tell the exact distance, only using the scale at the bottom I came to about 2.5km, which would still put it at the longest single span in the world of any bridge.

Who’s up for a challenge
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Old October 30th, 2019, 10:18 PM   #147
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Brian Unwin wrote this week to the Guardian making a salient point about the prospects for a bridge/tunnel link. Mark Twain coined the phrase, "When a man says it's not the money it's the principle of the thing - it's the money". Well as Mr Unwin points out, in this case it's definitely the money.

Quote:
I much enjoyed your comprehensive article about the Channel tunnel What it failed to mention, however, is that the primary financer of the tunnel, and coordinator of the banking consortium, was the European Investment Bank, of which the UK will cease to be a shareholder, and therefore no longer eligible for EIB investment finance, when/if it leaves the EU.
Brian Unwin
President EIB (1993-2000)
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