The shortcut to the continent one step closer

Femern A/SPhoto: Femern A/S

Recently, German authorities gave the green light to plans to build an 18-kilometre submerged tunnel between Germany and Denmark.

It will be buried in the seabed in the same area as the ferries between Rødby and Puttgarden are now sailing. A well-known route for many holidaying Norwegians, who with the tunnel will be able to go south even faster.

“I am happy and proud that we have now reached this crucial milestone. This is the result of several years of cooperation between the parties involved in Denmark and Germany” said Claus Dynesen, project manager at Femern AS.

The ferry crossing between the two countries takes about an hour, including waiting time. By car, the driving time through the tunnel will take 10 minutes.The train will take seven minutes.

The Femern connection will reduce the driving time by car from Copenhagen to Hamburg from 4.5 to 3.5 hours. For freight trains, time savings are up to 4 hours, since they cannot use the ferries today.

The tunnel will have four pipes with two railway tracks and a four-lane highway, and will be the world’s longest submersible tunnel. The project is priced at DKK 52.6 billion, equivalent to NOK 70.3 billion.

Important for Norway

“There is no one who has such a bad time as a dead salmon” said CEO Are Kjensli of NHO logistics and transport to NRK news. It is important for Norwegian fish exports to reduce the time it takes to transport Norwegian fish to the European continent.

He hopes the new connection will be a reality, because he thinks Norway is in a dead end in relation to the big markets.

‘’Everything that can contribute to shorter and easier transport is very good for business in Norway. Not least for Norwegian fish exports. Norwegian business and industry will actually become more competitive’’ said Kjensli.

By moving freight traffic (which today goes via Padborg and Jutland) through Denmark, it will save 160 kilometres on only the Copenhagen-Hamburg route. For passenger trains on the
route, the journey time is reduced from four and a half hours to two and a half hours.

Therefore, the Norwegian Ministry of Transport and Communications is also following up on what is happening in the case.

“It will undoubtedly be very good for Norway if the Danes succeed. A tunnel will provide great opportunities for developing freight and passenger traffic to and from the continent. So let’s hope that all the conditions come in place
so that this will become something” said Secretary of State, Anders B. Werp to NRK news.

Werp emphasised that the Norwegian authorities have no formal affiliation with the Femern project.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today