SWEDEN: Freight traffic is now running on a 26 km section of the Botniabanan between Örnsköldsvik and Husum, using 4 km spur to serve M-Real’s pulp and paper mill in Husum.

Chief Executive of Botniabanan AB Lennart Westberg told 220 guests at the inauguration event held on October 16 that 90% of the 190 km line between Nyland and Umeå is complete. The whole route will be open in mid-2010, when passenger services will also be launched. The line is being equipped with ETCS Level 2 signalling, and 250 km/h running is planned.

Regional services on the Botniabanan are to be operated by Norrtåg AB, which has selected Alstom’s X61 Coradia Lirex EMUs. 11 units will be supplied through local-authority owned leasing firm Transitio from spring 2011.