Infrastructure is one of the largest areas of growth in the Gothenburg region, and hereby also a prioritised area of development within Business Region Gothenburg, BRG. A prominent goal is to considerably expand the labour market regionally, thus placing current and future infrastructural projects in the limelight.
The major changes related to infrastructure within the Gothenburg region are in the short term crowned by the birth of the West Link underground railway. From a long-term perspective, current investments are crucial for the region to keep its position as a prime logistics hub.
“The investments made today create an excellent foundation for Gothenburg as a well-planned city with good infrastructure, additional job opportunities as well as better housing. It is no exaggeration to say that what is taking place right now is a major upgrade of the city for generations ahead”, says John Wedel, responsible for Infrastructure and Logistics in the department of Cluster and Innovation at BRG.
Looking at the Big Picture
The Gothenburg region is currently characterised and distinguished by greater investments than ever before. Looking at it from a long-term perspective, this development is to benefit all of Sweden providing better exporting and commuting opportunities. Further, yet another aspect that is easily forgotten is that even service- and knowledge-oriented companies are dependent on good communications.
“All current development is about linking future strategies for the city as an attractive place of business, residency and at the same time solving the challenge of ascending cargo volumes”, says John Wedel, and explains: “At BRG, we are currently discussing the question in association with players such as the Port of Gothenburg, the University of Gothenburg, the Chamber of Commerce, Region Västra Götaland, the Swedish Transport Administration and the municipality of Gothenburg”.
John Wedel also underlines that the general aim revolves around being able to transport as many people and goods as possible, with as little environmental impact as possible. It is a question that is equally important for the Gothenburg region as for the rest of Sweden.
The importance of the railway
The Port of Gothenburg plays a key role in developing the region. The current project of expanding the route to and from the port with electrified double railway tracks will fulfil an important function when reinforcing the importance of the region as a major logistics hub in Sweden and Scandinavia.
One of the most important developments of the port is to make way for greater freight volumes. However, one of the main challenges in achieving this is linked to current limits in the existing rail and road networks.
“The railway needs to be used to a greater extent and in collaboration with other forms of transport. All goods will not enter and exit the port through the railway system, but if we can work to increase the proportion that does, then we have succeeded in our goal of reducing the impact made on the environment”, says John Wedel.
There are several ongoing projects, where the tracks connecting the Port of Gothenburg to the region is just one. The West Link is yet another, and there is a lot more to come. There is for example a vision of connecting Gothenburg, Copenhagen and Oslo in a better way, and this is a clear example of a future project that BRG are keen to bring forward as soon as possible.