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14.06.2020

Oresund Bridge

The Öresund or Øresund Bridge is a combined railway and motorway bridge across the Öresund strait between Sweden and Denmark. The bridge runs nearly 8 kilometres (5 miles) from the Swedish coast to the artificial island Peberholm in the middle of the strait. The crossing is completed by the 4-kilometre (2.5 mi) Drogden Tunnel from Peberholm to the Danish island of Amager.

The Öresund Bridge was the longest combined road and rail bridge in Europe in 2000–2019 and connects two major metropolitan areas: Copenhagen, the Danish capital city, and the Swedish city of Malmö. It connects the road and rail networks of the Scandinavian Peninsula with those of Central and Western Europe. A data cable also makes the bridge the backbone of internet data transmission between central Europe and Sweden (and, prior to 2016 also Finland).

The international European route E20 crosses via road, the Øresund Line via railway. The construction of the Great Belt Fixed Link (1988-1998), connecting Zealand to Funen and thence to the Jutland Peninsula, and the Öresund Bridge have connected Central and Western Europe to Scandinavia by road and rail.

The Öresund Bridge was designed by the Danish engineering firm COWI. The justification for the additional expenditure and complexity related to digging a tunnel for part of the way, rather than raising that section of the bridge, was to avoid interfering with air traffic from the nearby Copenhagen Airport, to provide a clear channel for ships in good weather or bad, and to prevent ice floes from blocking the strait.

The Öresund Bridge crosses the border between Denmark and Sweden. Although the Schengen Agreement and the Nordic Passport Union should mean no routine passport inspections, since January 2016, identity and visa checks have been imposed by Sweden on travellers from Denmark due to the European migrant crisis.

Construction began in 1995, with the bridge opening to traffic on 1 July 2000. The Öresund Bridge received the 2002 IABSE Outstanding Structure Award.

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