Wants Investment in Critical Infrastructure in Narvik: A Double track on the Ofoten Line Must Be Prioritized

Gruppeledere på Nordland fylkesting
Chairs of Committees in the Nordland County Council from the left: Kim Haugan Schei (Center), Cecilie Hegge (Liberal), Stig Tore Skogsholm (Conservative), and Rune Østergren (Progress Party). (Photo: Trond-Erlend Willassen)

The governing parties in Nordland County Council, Northern Norway, wants increased investments in critical infrastructure in Narvik and Ofoten and encourages the government and parliament to prioritize a double track on the Ofoten Railway.

Read in Norwegian.

"I'd claim that the Ofoten Line was the most important railway line in Norway also before Sweden and Finland entered NATO. It is now undoubtedly the most important, as it is not "just" about business anymore, but security and preparedness as well. These are arguments we cannot overlook, particularly after the government launched a very expansive long-term defense plan."

That is stated by the Conservative's Chair of Committee Stig Tore Skogsholm in Nordland County Council in a press release. Together with the other Nordland County Council Chairs of Committees from the Center Party, the Liberal Party,  and the Progress Party, Skogsholm emphasizes the importance of increased investment in critical infrastructure in the Narvik and Ofoten region. 

An important role

This transport investment mainly concerns a double track on the Ofoten Line and an E6 tunnel through the Narvik center in Northern Norway.

"There is too little understanding of the importance of the Ofoten Line, the amount of goods being transported here, and its role considering industry and businesses, essential supplies, and the defense of Norway," the Center Party's Kim Haugan Schei points out.

A necessary double track

Increased investment in critical infrastructure in the Ofoten region is necessary for both the business sector and to ensure efficient mobilization and support for the Armed Forces and our allies, says the Progress Party Chair of Committee Rune Østergren, pointing out that the Ofoten Line and the Narvik tunnel are closely connected and critical in a preparedness context.

"A double track has been a topic on and off for too long. Passing sidings are temporarily efficient, but we cannot escape the fact that a double track is what we need and must have," he adds.

In a statement, Østergren emphasizes that resolving bottlenecks and ensuring reliable infrastructure is essential for businesses and growth with great potential for the High North.

Fremover writes that the statement has not yet been adopted, but Østergren tells the newspaper that almost all the parties have signed it as co-proposers.

The County Council is currently gathered in Svolvær, and the meeting will be concluded today.

The Ofoten and Iron Ore Line

  • Stretches from Narvik in Northern Norway to Boden in Northern Sweden, with a branch to Luleå (about 50 miles).
  • Essential to passenger and freight traffic, as well as iron ore traffic.
  • Has a single track, making it very vulnerable to derailments.
  • Characterized by low capacity and overloading.
  • This winter, the line saw two derailments, leading to a stop in traffic for about two months.


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