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£120,000 OF THE PUBLIC’S MONEY NEEDED TO FUND FIXED LINK VIABILITY STUDY

ARUP, an award-winning advisor in the global infrastructure market, are ready to carry out a viability study into a proposed fixed link between the Isle of Wight and the mainland – but the study will cost £120,000 and will need to be funded by the general public.

The purpose of the viability study is to identify any ‘red flag’ issues in relation to the development and delivery of the proposed fixed link. It will look at the technical, economic, financial and commercial impacts of such a project and ultimately decided whether or not a fixed link is realistically possible.

Among those set to be involved in the study is ARUP’s Alison Norrish, who has been involved in major projects such as Crossrail and the new metro line in Singapore. The team will also primarily consist of Jonathan Turton and Alastair Howcroft.

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However, nothing can happen until the 6-figure sum has been raised through a crowdfunding process.

The viability study process will require governance in the form of a steering group to ensure due diligence and impartiality. Transport Cabinet Member, Councillor Ian Ward, will oversee the steering group. 3 more independent persons will be sought.

If the viability study concludes that it is possible to move the Fixed Link idea forward then the next step would be to engage with the Department for Transport and Government in general to seek support for the plan. Following this a Strategic Outline Business Case would need to be produced and presented.

More information can be found at http://solentfreedomtunnel.co.uk/the-sft-viability-study-by-arup/.

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