Multiconsult and Analyse&Strategi acted as consultants to the Norwegian National Rail Administration, and played a key role in drawing up the report. Their work included a situation and needs analysis, concept development, cost estimates, urban development analysis, concept analysis and market analysis.
“We have assessed whether, and if so how, a railway linking Vestfoldbanen and Sørlandsbanen should be built. This link, which has been nicknamed Grenlandsbanen, is a relatively short stretch of line – just over 60 km – that would reduce rail times between Oslo and Kristiansand by almost an hour,” explains Multiconsult’s project manager Gunnar Bratheim.
Several key questions
The report discussed a number of questions, with some of the most important ones being:
- Is the market big enough to justify an investment of the order of NOK 20-30 billion?
- Should a railway that is currently only planned for long-distance services have double or single track?
- What should have highest priority – promoting regional development by having trains stop in the main urban areas, or minimising the travel time between Oslo and Kristiansand?
Will produce large travel time savings
“This has been a very interesting interdisciplinary project. It has been particularly interesting to see how the various routes we have been working on affect the market in different ways,” says Kaj Halvorsen of Analyse&Strategi.
“The market analysis has shown the potential impact of each of the concepts reviewed on regional labour market integration in Vestfold, Grenland and Aust-Agder. This analysis of the potential market has been used as an input when choosing stations,” says Halvorsen. He says it is very rare for a study to find such big travel time savings.
“Our market analysis has shown that the railway has the potential to take significant market share from air and car travel between the end stations Oslo and Kristiansand,” concludes Halvorsen.