Orkney tunnel

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The Orkney tunnel is a suggested undersea road tunnel between Orkney and Caithness on the Scottish Mainland. The expected length of it would be about 9–10 miles (15–16 km).

Orkney Islands in Scotland
 A map of the Orkney archipelago showing topography and main transport routes. A small island with a high elevation is at south west. At centre is the largest island, which also has low hills. Ferry routes spread out from there to the smaller islands in the north.
Map of Orkney showing topography and main transport routes

The tunnel, if constructed, is assumed to make landfall on South Ronaldsay. In 2005, the tunnel was discussed, and then a total bill of £100 million was mentioned.[1][2] There has not been so much discussion after 2005.

There are also suggested plans to connect Orkney Mainland to Shapinsay.[3]

With recent developments of the renewables industry in the Pentland Firth, the idea of a tunnel has lost ground, though there have been discussions of the construction of a bridge over the top of a Pentland Tidal Array.


  1. ^ David Lister (5 September 2005). "Islanders see a brighter future with tunnel vision". The Times. Retrieved 12 July 2007. 
  2. ^ John Ross (10 March 2005). "£100m tunnel to Orkney 'feasible'". The Scotsman. Retrieved 5 February 2012. 
  3. ^ "Isle tunnel plans under spotlight". BBC News. 9 March 2005. Retrieved 8 June 2009.