SWEDEN: A consortium of Cowi and Systra has been selected to undertake technical planning work on the third section of the 150 km Ostlänken line linking Stockholm and Linköping.

Diverging from the current Stockholm – Göteborg trunk line at Järna, west of Södertälje, the ‘East Link’ would run southwest through Norrköping and Nyköping to rejoin the Stockholm – Malmö main line at Linköping, broadly following the country’s east coast.

The double-track Ostlänken has been prioritised in order to relieve the capacity constraints on the existing single-track railway through Norrköping, but the route is being designed for 320 km/h operation as it is intended to form the first stage of a Y-shaped high speed line connecting the capital with Göteborg and Malmö.

National transport infrastructure manager Trafikverket has divided the route into four sections which are being tendered in sequence. ÅF Infrastructure AB was selected in August 2014 to undertake detailed design and environmental impact assessments for Package 1 at the eastern end of the route between Södertälje and Trosa. Package 2 for the section through Norrköping was awarded to Sweco Rail AB in February.

Cowi and Systra will be responsible for Package 3, which is the largest of the four, covering infrastructure and railway systems design on the 65 km section from Sillekrog to Stavsjö, including a link to connect with the existing line at Nyköping and a new station to serve Skavsta Airport. According the consultants, this section runs through ‘large areas of natural beauty and soft soil areas which pose challenges for the stability of the track’. The assignment includes the design of 77 bridges and some short tunnels.

Earlier this year, Trafikverket selected TAplan i Norrköping AB and InfraPartner AB to act as deputy project managers for the Ostlänken project.