The preparatory work started last month.

The contract has a value of around 500 million kroner, Uniforum reports. The construction was delayed – the original plan was for the construction of the new Viking Age Museum to start on August 1 this year.

However, extensive work on the excavation of the site and preparations for construction began only in November, Statsbygg director Marius Tunstad noted in a press release.

The plan is for the museum facility to be completed in 2026. 

The museum will house the world's best-preserved Viking ships, and the facility will have a size of just over 13,000 square metres – three times as large as the old Viking Ship Museum.

"It is a milestone, but we still have a lot of work ahead of us. It's quite special. Our goal is to display the ships and other objects from the Viking Age in the best possible way and create a museum that pleases Norwegians and brings tourists to Norway," Tunstad told Uniforum.

The museum is supposed to be elevated from a national museum to a leading international knowledge center for the dissemination of knowledge about the Viking Age. Photo: Maria Luisa Cianca / Shutterstock

Budget increase

The Norwegian Ministry of Education quality assured the project costs for the new Viking Age Museum in November, which opened the way for a budget increase for the project. 

Earlier this year, it emerged that the work on the new Viking Age Museum could not be carried out within the financial framework set by the Norwegian parliament (Storting). 

The project was then scaled down to control costs and start the work required to move the collections to a new building.

In November, the Ministry of Education commissioned a new assessment from the consultancy firm Atkins to obtain the best possible information. 

Atkins recommended taking greater account of the fact that the project involves groundbreaking work when it comes to moving and securing museum objects.

"In the work on the new museum, securing the cultural treasures from the Viking Age has the highest priority. The project must be carried out, but we must have reasonable control over the costs. 

"As we have to move and secure very fragile objects, we have to be prepared for something unforeseen to happen. We have now been advised to include a larger margin of uncertainty in the framework for the project, and we will consider that carefully," Research and Higher Education Minister Ola Borten Moe said last month.

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