A strategy was required by Hitrans to determine development opportunities for future marine transportation around the Scottish Islands with links to the mainland. Therefore, a study of the strategic sea crossings in the Scottish Highlands and Islands was carried out to identify suitable opportunities for the next 20 years.
Beckett Rankine considered the relative merits of various locations in order to prioritise the several different ferry routes under observation. Investigations involving the comparison of mono hull and twin hull vessels were also carried out to give an initial view on suitability for these routes.
The overall costings of the schemes were also looked into, as well as the facilities for berthing at each port. Each of these criteria varied between the ports because of the different prevailing conditions, and so different advice and recommendations were given for each one.