The new motorway
Motorists caring about road safety and depending on the Norwegian infrastructure will welcome the new E18 between Grimstad and Kristiansand. This stretch of the motorway will be 38 kilometres long and will be the largest single Norwegian road project to date. It is estimated that between 9,000 and 30,000 cars will use the new road every day. During the summer, this is expected to increase to 40,000 per day.
The motorway consists of 80 structures, including 5,740 metres of rock tunnel, divided into seven tunnels. The largest bridge will be 400 metres long. Due to the mountainous landscape requiring tunnels and bridges, the project faces many challenges: "One of the biggest issues will be the sulphide-filled rocks in Lillesand County. The subsoil is very acidic, which means that we have to pay special attention to the quality of the concrete. In some places, we cannot use concrete at all", explains Project Manager Bjørn Martens from Ramboll in Norway.
Improved living conditions
For those in local communities living along the existing road, building the new motorway away from populated areas will mean a reduction in the noise level and a safer environment allowing for normal neighbourhood activities. The project is a Public Private Partnership, which was won by Agder OPS Vegselskap, owned by Bilfinger Berger, Pihl & Søn and Sundt AS. They have the task to finance, construct and maintain the road section for 25 years after the opening. A Construction Joint Venture (Bilfinger Berger and Pihl & Søn) will carry out the construction works with Ramboll as their main consultant. Ramboll is responsible for the design of the motorway together with the German company Bilfinger Berger.