Norway to spend 2.8 billion Euros on railway network in 2019
The Norwegian government is planning to spend 26.4 Norwegian kroner (2.8 billion Euros) on the country’s railway network in 2019. That’s a 12.4 per cent increase from the 2018 budget. The money will be spent on several infrastructural projects and the purchase of new rolling stock.
Included in the budget is 1 billion Euros for project development, 230 million Euros for planning investment, almost 950 million Euros for operational and infrastructure maintenance. 400 million Euros is meant for passengers services and includes funds to purchase new trains.
The government also proposes to allocate almost 17 million Euros to the refurbishment of rolling stock and the phasing in of new. New trains will operate in the Eastern Region and the Voss Line.
Norway is working on several projects to improve the railway network. The construction on new double-track alignments on several parts of the Vestfold Line, which will reduce travel time and significantly increase the frequency of services between Oslo and Tønsberg, will start in 2019 and is expected to be completed in 2025. The construction of the Ringerike Line will be started. This is a 40 kilometres extension of the Bergen Line from Hønefoss to Sandvika.
During the next 15 years, the European Rail Traffic Management System ERTMS will replace all existing signal systems on the rail network. The next two lines on which ERTMS will be implemented are Gjøvik and Nordlands.
A total of 11 new Stadler Flirt trains will be in service in 2019. The replacing of the old Vosse fleet has started early 2018 and will be completed in 2019, when all seven new trains will be operating on this line. The remaining four Flirt trains will enter traffic in Austlandet to increase capacity during rush hour.
“We continue the work of transforming the Norwegian rail network into a modern and well-functioning transport system that can carry large volumes of passengers to their workplaces each day in an environmentally friendly way”, says Minister of Transport and Communications Jon Georg Dale.