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TRANSPORT: What you need to know about Oslo’s Fornebu line

After months of uncertainty, a new metro line between Majorstuen and Fornebu has been given the green light to go ahead by Oslo City Council and Viken County Council. Here’s what residents need to know about the T-bane link. 

Pictured is the Oslo metro system.
This is what residents should know about the Fornebu line. Pictured is the inside of one of Oslo's metro lines. Photo by Nikita Barskov on Unsplash

A new metro line between Majortstuen in Oslo and Fornebu in Bærum, just west of Oslo, has been given the green light, ending uncertainty over its future for the time being. 

Earlier this year, the project faced the axe due to spiralling costs, which saw the estimated price tag of the new metro line rise by 7 billion kroner. 

Oslo’s newest T-bane line will be the most significant investment in the metro system since the 60s or 70s, according to Sirin Stav from Oslo City Council. 

Since the airport at Fornebu closed in 1998, several links between the peninsula and the city centre have been pitched. 

The new 8-kilometre-long metro line will cost more than 31.0 billion kroner to complete. 

Construction on the project has already begun, and six new underground stations will be built. These are Skøyen, Vækerø, Lysaker, Fornebuporten, Flytårnet and Fornebu Senter. Plans will also see Majorstuen Metro Station upgraded. 

Fornebu, the former site of Oslo Airport, is home to a business park, shopping and residential areas. There are plans to build more than 11,000 new homes in the area and create 20,000 new jobs, according to Oslo Municipality

READ ALSO: What you might not have known about Oslo’s Diechman Bjørvika library

Oslo Municipality hopes the new line will provide an eco-friendly and accessible route between Fornebu and the city centre. Current bus routes are usually pretty busy, leading to many people driving in and out of the former site of Oslo airport. 

The stop at Majorstuen will connect the new line with the existing metro network in Oslo. 

Despite construction already starting nearly two years ago, it is unlikely the new line will open before 2029. 

Financing for the project comes from the government, the municipality, landowners, and the Oslo Package 3 toll agreement. 

As a result of the project going ahead, tolls as part of the Oslo Package 3 agreement will rise by 40 percent. This will happen in two steps, the first from September, with the second rise coming on January 1st 2024. 

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READER INSIGHTS

‘Need more bike lanes’: What it’s like to cycle in Norway

Cycling is an environmentally friendly way to get around and keep fit. But, what's it like to get in the saddle in Norway? Here's what The Local's readers had to say. 

'Need more bike lanes': What it's like to cycle in Norway

When many think of a Scandinavian city, they can’t help but think of a clean, modern environment where everyone gets around on bikes in all weather. 

This reputation is primarily due to Norway’s neighbour, Denmark. So what’s it like getting around on Norwegian roads on a bike? Is it a complete nightmare, or can it go toe-to-toe with the cyclist’s haven of Copenhagen? 

According to The Local’s readers, it stacks up pretty well. In a recent survey, we ran, 75 percent of those who responded said that Norway was a safe country to cycle in. 

Our results contrast with a recent survey reported in the newspaper Aftenposten, where less than a third said they thought that Oslo was a safe city to cycle. 

In addition to thinking it was safe, our readers also said that they believed Norway was a good country for cyclists in general, with more than three-quarters of those who got in touch saying they thought it was a great country to bike in. 

“I cycle to work every day across Oslo and go out for longer tours at the weekend. Drivers are usually pretty considerate. The only real issue I’ve noticed is that people really don’t use their indicators much here. Compared to cycling in London though it’s wonderful here, the cycle lane infrastructure is fantastic,” Simon, who has lived in Oslo for five years, said. 

Another Oslo resident said that the capital was good but still didn’t quite match up to Denmark yet.

“Oslo, where I live now, is becoming a lot better. I have lived in the UK, which was similar, France where I did not bike, and Denmark, which was great,” Anne Kristine, who has lived in Oslo for 12 years, but hails from Trondheim, said.

Pat, who lives in West Yorkshire but spent a month in Norway on a cycling holiday, praised Norway’s drivers. 

“The Norwegian drivers are incredibly polite and respectful of cyclists,” Pat said.

READ ALSO: What do foreigners think of the Norwegian healthcare system?

However, not everyone was impressed with the drivers. 

“Frequent overtaking on blind bends on country roads (is an issue),” Anthony, who lives in Rogaland, wrote. 

Similarly, in a recent survey of cyclists in Norway by Trygg Trafikk and Tryg Forsikring, one of the most common issues reported was drivers not paying enough attention. 

The biggest complaint about cycling in Norway among The Local’s readers was the lack of cycle paths. 

“There are not enough bikeway paths in Norway. It can become dangerous for the cyclists, especially with fast drivers going over the speed limit and also large lastebiler (freight trucks),” Joanie, who lives in Buskerud, but is originally from California, said. 

One reader from Berlin also had an issue with the lack of dedicated cycle lanes in Norway. 

“Not enough dedicated cycling lanes. Especially dangerous on roads shared with a tram,” the reader, who didn’t leave their name, said when asked about their experience of cycling in Norway. 

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