The Rest & Be Thankful road is closed for the 5th time in 5 yrs. I reckon about 40k people in Argyll and Bute are facing a detour of 100 mile plus. In peak tourist season vital business may just go elsewhere – and it isn’t even winter yet!! But in this morning's Radio Scotland interview the local councillor didn’t even utter the T-word — tunnel.
Maybe that’s because government ministers have made it clear that option is too expensive. Even though in Norway it's the automatic thought for communities a fraction of the size cut off annually in Scotland. I wonder how long people in Lochcarron near Kyle will have to ship their kids by boat across the loch to school before the rail and road link is permanently fixed there. Their website suggests the “ad hoc” arrangements have already cost £3 million.
Interestingly, the last time the A83 was shut for months after mega rain last December, my friend Inger Lise from Hammerfest told me about a tiny village 120 miles north of Bergen campaigning for a tunnel. There are just 13 Otterdal inhabitants who want a tunnel built at the cost of 230 million NOK — that's almost £2m per resident! A decision's not been made yet – but it's still being debated. Go compare! Is tunnel building something Nordic Horizons should tackle in a meeting? . See the attached document for more about Otterdal.