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Old March 5th, 2008, 12:34 AM   #201
54°26′S 3°24′E
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One problem with this norm is that it does not differ between cars and trucks. This of course, discriminate the regional transit routes which is quite important for the economy vs urban roads that has mostly private cars whose drivers and passengers might as well use some other form for transport.

However, no need to worry, using the official traffic prognoses, the current funding will only get the Norwegian roads up to the official norm in 50 years time. Unfortunately, real growth has typicallly been 2 percent higher than the prognosis in the past, so in reality, Norwegian roads will never get there with the current funding.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 11:28 AM   #202
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But the situation could be worse, this year quite a long strech of motorway will open in Østfold, and the motorway trough Drammen will be ready.Next year, 40 kms of motorway will open from Kristiansand to Grimstad, and the long motorway tunnel at Vinterbro (close to Oslo) will open.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 02:36 PM   #203
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The worst things about norwegian roads, is that they're unreliable(have to close in bad weather, falling rocks etc.), unsafe(to many turns, to narrow and not enough centre-guardrail), and main routes trough towns and cities(even the new E6 Oslo - Trondheim is recently planned trough Oppdal centre) - The local authorities want them trough because of tourism. It's not true that planners don't pay attention to the truck-routes, they get the numbers with heavy vehicles seperatly - i know, i do the counting =P But there's a lot of road-planning i don't yet understand.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 02:46 PM   #204
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How do you guys count? I am also conducting traffic counts, but with mobile counters, not the ones which are made in the pavement.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 02:50 PM   #205
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The old way, using a paper and pen - only for intersections tough because it's the cheapest way to do these counts.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 02:52 PM   #206
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Alright, visual countings. We do those occasionally.

I use these:
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Old March 5th, 2008, 02:54 PM   #207
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This one is actually placed in a way, i'd never do. Cars can stand on the hoses, and the counts can be interrupted, making the counts unreliable.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 05:31 PM   #208
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The Norwegian Mother Road, the E6

Most of the users of this forum will probably never go to Norway, but some might. Since the quality of even main roads up here is questionable, to say the least, here's a somewhat subjective guide of what you can expect now and in the forseeable future. The obvious starting point is the 2000+ kms of "mother road", the E6.

The Norwegian stretch of the E6 runs through the entire country, thus covering a wide variety of landscapes and road standards. County by county, it goes something like this:

Østfold:

Crossing the border from Sweden, you enter Østfold county, through which the E6 will be completed as a proper 4-lane motorway by the end of this year. Currently, approx 25 kms remain. Speed limit: Eventually 100 kph the entire way.
Nature-wise, Østfold is relatively flat and perhaps a bit boring, at least by Norwegian standards.

Akershus/Oslo/Akershus

To the north of Østfold, the E6 runs through Akershus, Oslo and then Akershus again. From the Østfold border to the Oslo border, the entire road is a motorway apart from a 7-km stretch just south of Oslo. The road and tunnel here is due to be completed in 2009.
Through the southern outskirts of Oslo, there is a serious jam problem. The road is an older, 2x2-lane expressway. There are plans to make it a 2x3 and reroute it through a new tunnel, but this is at least 10-15 years in the future.
To the north, the situation is slightly better: The road is a motorway, mainly 2x3 (even 2x4 including a bus lane in places).
Entering Akershus again. The first 40 kms is a proper 2x2 motorway, then things turn sour: the remaining bit of the E6 through Akershus is a 2- or 3-lane expressway without a centre guardrail or barrier. Work on dualling the road has begun, but even the first 10-km stretch will not be completed until 2009, and the rest is not due to be completed until 2012-15. Speed limits vary, 80-100 kph, lower through construction zones, obviously.
Akershus is also quite boring, with fields, farms, villages and low hills.

Hedmark

Much the same as Akershus, the entire stretch (approx 75 kms) is 2-/3-lane expressway. Speed limit: 80 kph. Dualling is planned or in construction, the first 10-km bit will open in 2010, the rest from 2012-2020 (or perhaps even beyond).
Hedmark is slightly more exciting, the road runs partly along Norway’s largest lake Mjøsa, partly through forests and hills and partly across fields.

Oppland

The road quality varies a lot, the first 40-50 kms is a 2-/3-lane expressway, the next 50 kms a reasonable quality 2-lane highway, bypassing villages and hamlets. The remainder of the road through Gudbrandsdalen (some 100 kms) is not so reasonable: the 2-lane highway runs through most villages, it is quite curvy in places and the climb up to the Dovre plateau is quite steep. Across the plateau, however, the road is dead straight, with a 90 kph speed limit. Elsewhere, 50-80 kph.
As for plans, there are plenty: The southernmost part, along Mjøsa up to Lillehammer, will eventually be dualled, but that won’t happen for at least 15 years. The road through Gudbrandsdalen is planned as a 2+1 expressway, with a central barrier. Construction may start in a couple of years.
Oppland has the first bit of truly exciting nature, the Dovre plateau, but also Mjøsa and parts of Gudbrandsdalen (meaning Gudbrand’s valley) is interesting.

Sør-Trøndelag

Both road quality and nature differ considerably over the 150+ kms through the southern Trøndelag county. Beginning on the Dovre plateau, the road is quite good (stretches with a 90 kph limit) almost down to Oppdal. But just south of that village, things get worse. From there to the southern outskirts of Trondheim, the road is a mix of decent highway, villages and towns, curvy stretches along valleys and rivers and a short 3-/4-lane expressway just south of Trondheim. Speed limits, 50-90 kph.
There are plans for improvement, but they’re anything but spectacular and way into the future. The final 10 kms into Trondheim will be widened into a proper motorway in the next 5-10 years. Around Trondheim, the road is a pretty decent 4-lane expressway, and to the north (actually east…), the road is a 2-/3-lane expressway for 30 kms, partly with a central barrier. In the long run, this might become a motorway.
The nature is varied, mountains, wild valleys, forests, hills, agricultural landscapes and even the Trondheimsfjord.

Nord-Trøndelag

No uniform standard here either. The southernmost 75 kms has a considerable amount of 2-lane expressway, but it’s mixed with villages and poorer quality 2-lane road. North of Steinkjer, the road is somewhat more uniform, a 2-lane highway. Mainly, it’s a quite good 70s or 80s road, around Grong there is even a proper 90 kph stretch built in the 90s. North of there, the road narrows, with plenty of curves and even a single-lane bridge, but there are also bits of better 80s/90s road. Speed limits vary from 50 to 90 kph.
Steinkjer deserves a few comments. The new road through the former is nothing short of a scandal: south of the town, the road is a narrow-profile 2+2 expressway. North of the town, it’s a 1+1 with a central concrete barrier. Through the town, however, you’ve got two narrow lanes, four or five roundabouts, plenty of local traffic. Nothing atypical about that, perhaps, only that the road is brand new…
Plans include a 4-lane stretch around Stjørdal (with roundabout intersections, however), some shorter new stretches. In a 20-year perspective, we might see more of a narrow profile 4-laner through the southern part, and longer improved stretches further north.
Nature includes hilly landscapes, the Trondheimsfjord, fields, forests and river valleys.

Nordland

Norway’s longest and second-largest county is truly varied, roadwise as well as naturewise. Close to the border with Nord-Trøndelag you find some of the worst stretches of the entire E6; narrow (single lane in places), plenty of tight curves, poor pavement, 60-70 kph speed limit… The stretch into Mosjøen was improved in the 80s, but the 50 kms north of Mosjøen are quite bad. Then, there is a new 8-km tunnel, and the road from Korgen to Mo is ok to quite good. Further north, the story is bad until you get up at Saltfjellet mountain plateau, where the road is spectacular in most ways imaginable. The descent on the other side is also narrow, but the road down in the valley is really good all the way to Rognan. The next 200 kms (to Narvik), is basically the same roadwise: An ok 2-lane road, quite a few (rather narrow) tunnels, steep in places, curvy in places. The stretch also includes the only ferry on the E6. Narvik to the border with Troms is much the same story: 2 lanes, improved in places. Speed limits obviously vary, from 50 to 90 kph, but there are in fact a few longish 90 kph stretches.
Improvements are planned in several places: A new bridge north of Narvik, new road through the city centre, tunnels to replace the worst hill just south of the ferry, improvements of all non-2-lane stretches are all to become a reality in a decade or so.
Where to begin in terms of the nature..? Mountain plateaus and ranges, glaciers, fjords, wild rivers, valleys, forests… In short, a truly spectacular drive.

Troms/Finnmark

It’s been a while since I drove through Norway’s two northernmost counties, but not all that much has happened since the early 90s. The road quality varies considerably, but there is quite a bit of 90 kph on the straight roads along fjords, across mountain plateaus and in the valleys. There are narrow and curvy places, however, even though some of them have been improved. The road through both countries is quite quiet (apart from the bit through Alta), and thus, it runs through most tiny hamlets, villages and towns. However, these are few and far between, so a reasonable travel speed is very much possible. Limits from 50 to 90, much more of the latter.
Some plans exist, one of the more spectacular is the proposed improvement of the current rv 98 between Lakselv and Tana and make it into the E6. It would make sense, since it’s about 50 kms shorter, but it requires a new road across a couple of mountain passes. Improvements are currently going on outside Alta, and a few other places will also see construction works the next decade.
The nature is still spectacular, fjords and mountains in particular, plus the world’s northernmost forest!
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Old March 5th, 2008, 07:19 PM   #209
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E18

I’ll see if I can find more pix, but for now, I’m focusing on this guide. I’ve driven most Norwegian main roads, and I’ll see if I can make a guide to the E39, E16, E134, E136, E14, E10, E8, rv 2, 3, 5, 7 and 15. If anyone else would like to make other contributions or additions to my guides, please feel free.

However, my second guide concerns the second-most important road in Norway, the E18.

Østfold

Whereas the E6 enters Norway from the south, Gothenburg, Malmö, Copenhagen and – obviously – Continental Europe, E18 is the main link from the east – Stockholm. It is certainly not as important as the E6, but still, quite a busy road. At the border, the road is a decent 2-lane road for about 10 kms. The next 25 are better, a 90s 10-metre 2-laner. Then, there’s a short break onto the old, poor quality road. Then, about 15 kms of brand new motorway until you end up on an older 2-lane road through towns and villages to the border with Akershus. Speed limits 50-100 kph.
Construction works going on as we speak. The entire western part to the Akershus border will eventually be motorway, the remainder 2-lane expressway, but probably not finished until beyond 2015.
The nature isn’t that spectacular, fields, forests, some lakes and hills.

Akershus/Oslo/Akershus

The first 10 kms is an overloaded, decent 2-lane stretch. The next 5 is an overloaded, 2+1 expressway without a central divider, then entering Oslo on a 4-km stretch of OLD motorway which turns to an overloaded regular road along the fjord about 8 kms from the city centre. Then, 4, 6 or 8 lanes through/under the city centre, partly with motorway signposting. Then, an older 4-6-lane (partly plus bus lanes) road all the way to Sandvika where the road turns 2x3, later 2x2 motorway to the Buskerud border. Limits: 50-90 kph.
Plans and construction… Well… To start where I ended above: the largest project in Norwegian history, a new western approach to Oslo from Sandvika: A brand new 2x3 motorway will replace the old expressway, due for opening around 2015. Also, widening to 2x3 towards Asker, possibly a new tunnel underneath Asker to replace the ugly 70s bridge. Currently, an immersed 2x3 tunnel is constructed across the eastern harbour to take traffic under instead of through the city. This will open in 2010. The 2-lane road along the fjord may eventually be replaced by a 6-km 2x2 tunnel, but the politicians insist 2 lanes should be reserved for buses. Quite insane, particularly since the traffic load approaches an AADT of 30,000… 2 lanes of the old motorway south of the proposed tunnel will also be made into bus lanes (AADT 25,000+...), and the 2+1 (AADT 20,000+) will not be widened. The reason for all this is that the politicians have decided that traffic from the south and east should use the E6 from the E18/E6 junction and not the E18… The 10 kms of “overloaded, decent 2-lane” road to the east of this will eventually be replaced by a motorway, but not until years after the Østfold motorway is finished…
Nature? Not much of it, since most of the road crosses the most densely populated area of Norway. But the fjord is nice.

Buskerud

Actually, a fully fledged E18 motorway county come autumn. Then, the “missing link” – 2 kms of 2-lane expressway south of Drammen – will be dualled. Speed limits from 80 (the bridge over Drammen) to 100 (the rest) apart for the 50-70 through the construction site.
Nature: Quite ok, albeit not all that exciting, mainly fields, some forest plus a hint of fjord.

Vestfold

Northern 40+ kms (to Tønsberg exit) is a modern 2x2 motorway, the next 25 kms a 2- or 2+1-expressway, partly with a central concrete barrier. Then, 10 kms of accident-infested 2-lane highway, followed by another 10 of 70s 2-lane expressway. The final stretch to the border with Telemark is horrible, plenty of curves and traffic... Limits: 60-100 kph.
Plans: The entire stretch will be made motorway by 2012-15, current construction is the replacement of the “10 kms of accident-infested 2-lane highway”. Finished by 2009.
Nature: Mainly fields, some forests and hills.

Telemark

Begins with a fairly old 2-lane expressway which becomes a slightly newer 2- or 2+1-expressway for about 25 kms. Then, a decent 2-laner for 20 kms, eventually leaving Telemark the same way it entered – as 70s 2-lane expressway. 60-80 kph.
Eventually, the entire stretch is supposed to become a motorway, but that’ll probably take 20+ years. However, the first 4-lane stretch, to replace the 20 km non-expressway stretch, might come to be in less than a decade.
Telemark’s nature is more exciting, even out by the coast. You’ll get hills, fjords with spectacular views from the bridges crossing them plus a bit of fields and forest.

Aust-Agder

You’ll start on the abovementioned 70s expressway, then onto a modern 2+1 expressway with a central barrier. After about 25 kms, you’ll enter 30 kms of questionable 2-lane highway. Some stretches have been modernised, but mainly rather narrow and curvy and most certainly not good enough. Then, from Arendal to Grimstad, there is a 2-/2+1-expressway built in the 80s and 90s. The final 40 kms to the Vest-Agder border is truly crappy, but is replaced by a new motorway currently under construction in 2009. Speed limits vary from 50 to 90 kph.
Eventually, also Aust-Agder will see only motorway, but not for another 20 years. The next likely stretch to be improved is north of Arendal.
The southern coast of Norway is really nice, and even the inland stretches of the E18 have some nice views.

Vest-Agder

The final 10 kms of E18 – into Kristiansand – is or will be shortly 4-lane expressway or motorway. Speed limit 60-80 kph.
Plans: A new Varodd bridge. Currently, southbound traffic use a new bridge, northbound use the old 50s suspension bridge. This will eventually be replaced.
Nature, still nice.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 07:42 PM   #210
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Great guides, Elvis! To bad they have to replace the varoddbridge as the old one looks really impressing!
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Old March 5th, 2008, 09:29 PM   #211
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Interesting information. Thanks for sharing.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 09:34 PM   #212
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ingenioren View Post
Great guides, Elvis! To bad they have to replace the varoddbridge as the old one looks really impressing!
Thanks! There's more to come, including pictures. I can't seem to get them pasted, though...
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Old March 5th, 2008, 09:36 PM   #213
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen669 View Post
Interesting information. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you, the next road guide is going to be the E39 - about 1000 kms of about everything a motorist can imagine...
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Old March 5th, 2008, 09:46 PM   #214
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Yes, show the horror! Keep up the good work=)
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Old March 5th, 2008, 11:15 PM   #215
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ingenioren View Post
It's not true that planners don't pay attention to the truck-routes, they get the numbers with heavy vehicles seperatly - i know, i do the counting =P But there's a lot of road-planning i don't yet understand.
I know they count the trucks seperately (at least sometimes), but when calculating the total AADT, which eventually decides which road could be built, a Fiant Punta count just as much as the largest truck monsters...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ElviS77 View Post
Thanks! There's more to come, including pictures. I can't seem to get them pasted, though...
Thanks for the great work. If you want to include pictures, you need to host them somewhere else. I have used imageshack.us a couple of times to host pictures anonymously, but I see other people are using other sites.
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Old March 5th, 2008, 11:45 PM   #216
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Quote:
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This one is actually placed in a way, i'd never do. Cars can stand on the hoses, and the counts can be interrupted, making the counts unreliable.
True, but 100% accuracy isn't really important, is it?
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Old March 6th, 2008, 10:14 AM   #217
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Well, it is important if you conduct such a survey to make noise-level models. Those can be used in juridical issues. If you have always cars standing on the hoses (usually with a roundabout), the accuracy can be very low.

It works like this:
When a car drive over a hose, a little air pulse will go towards the counter. Because there are two hoses, this counter can calculate speed and classification (light, medium or heavy traffic). If you stand on one of the hoses, your classification will be messed up. Also, countings can get messed up, because it takes too long for the second pulse to reach the counter.
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Old March 6th, 2008, 11:09 PM   #218
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About the horror of Norwegian roads: This is not a highway, but really cool and dangerous!! Up Jordalen, it's just a short detour off E16 =)

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Old March 6th, 2008, 11:36 PM   #219
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I guess such unlightened tunnels aren't a pleasant drive after sunset...
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Old March 7th, 2008, 03:38 PM   #220
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E39

As promised, the next guide coming up.

E39 is a relatively new European route in Norway. It is made up from a bunch of older routes, E18, plus rv 1 (which in itself wasn’t very old, was rv 14 until the 90s) and parts of rv 71 and 65.

Vest-Agder

The route starts in Kristiansand, and the first couple of kms is a 4-lane expressway. After that, a few kms of bad old two-lane, then approx 20 of old 2-lane expressway. Then, an average 2-lane road for the next 50 kms, some stretches are decent, other steep, curvy and quite narrow. The next 20 kms is a brand new road, but there has been considerable criticism of this project, since its only 8.5 metres wide. Mainly a decent road from there to the Rogaland border, built in the 70s and 80s. Speed limits: 50-80 kph.
Plans? Several, most important is the new western link in Kristiansand – a motorway-stretch of about 20 kms. Outside Lyngdal, a new 2+1 expressway will replace the old, poor-quality 2-laner. 20+ years from now, we’ll hopefully see four lanes Kristiansand-Mandal and 2+1 for much of the rest.
Nature includes white sandy beaches, fjords and hills. Quite beautiful, really, and since it’s the southernmost region, you’ll might even get sun and 20+-centigrade bathing temperatures.

Rogaland

The E39 starts inland, and the road is pretty decent for the first 40 kms (one stretch used to be 90 kph), but there are also a few hamlets and villages. The next 35 cross a couple of low mountains, and the road is decent quality, even though there has been talk about removing the 90 kph stretches. But from Ålgård to Sandnes, it’s pretty crappy, a 2-lane urban road. Then, a few kms of 80s crowded 3-lane expressway takes you around Sandnes and eventually onto a proper 2x2 motorway the final 20 kms to Stavanger. However, it’s prone to jams, since it runs along the main oil industry area in Norway, and the off-ramps are no way near good enough to deal with traffic volumes. A stop-gap 2-/4-lane ring road takes you round the city centre and onto a decent 2-lane semi-urban highway. Then, 20 kms of mainly subaqueous tunnel take you to the ferry across Boknafjorden. The 40 kms on the other side is partly new, partly improved 2-lane highway. Speed limits: 50-90 kph.
Projects include 2+1 expressways in the southern part of the county, motorway from Ålgård to Sandnes (the bit around Sandnes is in construction, completion 2009, I think). Through Stavanger, a new motorway tunnel is in preparation, north of the city, a massive 25-km 2x2 tunnel is planned to replace the ferry. Also, the road north of the ferry will be improved, parts will possibly even be motorway. The latter projects, however, are at least beyond 2020.
Nature? Spectacular! Beaches, mountains, fjords, islands, fields…

Hordaland

First stretch is ok highway, then you enter an 8-km subaqueous tunnel with a new road link to the north. An older, suspect highway will take you the 30 kms along Stord island. From there, a pretty long ferry trip to the south of Bergen. The final 20 kms into Bergen is a mix of 2-lane bad urban road, decent 2-lane rural road, 2x2 motorway-style road, 2x2/2x3 expressway. Eventually, you go through a few roundabouts and traffic lights and end up in a huge intersection in the middle of Bergen. From there, a couple of 2x2 tunnels dump you onto 10 kms of motorway. Then, a 2-laner take you to the 2-lane Nordhordaland bridge. The final 70 kms is a mix of modern 2-lane roads, a few tunnels, truly bad 2- and even 1-lane stretches and basically everything in between… Speed limits, as usual between 50 and 90.
Some construction work is happening, parts of the worst stretch will be history this year. The southern link to Bergen – some 15 kms – (as well as the final stretch to the Nordhordaland bridge) will be motorway some time the next decade. Later, a tunnel (probably 2x3) will replace the roundabouts inside the city of Bergen. The ferry south of Bergen will be halved through a new road link sometime around 2013-15, and further into the future, the ferry might be replaced altogether by overland roads plus a bridge or tunnel link.
The nature in this part of Hordaland isn’t as spectacular as a few other places, but still a really nice combination of mountains, sea, forests and a bit of agricultural land.

Sogn og Fjordane

Looong time since I drove here, and there have been some improvements. But, AFAIK, the first few kms to the next ferry across Sognefjorden are 2-lane. The next 75 kms are a mix of newer and older 2-lane stretches, spiced with 1-lane bits and pieces. Some parts are steep, curvy as well as narrow. The next 70 kms is slightly better, but not great. The final 10-km stretch to the Nordfjord ferry is almost new and supposedly quality. The final 20 kms to the Møre og Romsdal border is 2-lane, but not in a good way. Speed limits from 50 to 80 kph.
Several projects, most spectacular a submerged tube across the 1.3-km-deep Sognefjord. Will probably never happen, though. More realistic are further improvements, particularly of the worst and 1-lane stretches. Also, the northern part will be rerouted through the construction of a brand new 20-km road further inland, crossing the Møre og Romsdal border in the process. But to make it really sensible, more new roads need to be built, including a bridge across Nordfjord. The first part will open 2010-12, the latter probably beyond 2020.
The nature along the route is spectacular (though more spectacular roads exist just round the corner); mountains, fjords, glaciers, meadows…

Møre og Romsdal

Early 90s last time I drove parts of this stretch of road as well, other parts I’ve driven quite recently. It’s a mix of really bad, 1-lane road, more or less decent 2-lane road and ferries. First bit is ok (also to be replaced by the abovementioned new road), then a short ferry. Next stretch is slightly better along a fjord to the next ferry, some 50 kms on. It’s worth noting that the world’s deepest subaqueous tunnel is part of a parallel route which eventually might become the new E39. Then, a bit of urban 2-laner with roundabouts and traffic lights, and then a pretty good road which at least used to be 90 kph. Ok for the next 50 kms as well, then the next, somewhat longer, ferry into Molde. Urban road through there as well, then an ok 2-lane overland stretch eventually dump you in a 40 (!) kph-zone. After that, some relatively new bridges and an ok older 2-laner take you the 25 kms to the final ferry. The final stretch mixes appalling with mediocre and ok. Speed limit: 40-90 kph.
Plans and projects are plenty. The worst stretches (1-lane etc) are being replaced as we speak, shorter improvements are due all over the place over the coming years. But more ambitious plans, where all the ferry links are to be replaced, do exist. These will probably not be realised until 2020-2025 or beyond, and most certainly not without substantial toll fees.
Nature? Still great, fjords, mountains, hills etc.

Sør-Trøndelag

This piece of road isn’t very long, only about 90 kms, but it nevertheless varies from 1-lane to 2-lane expressway the last 25 kms from Orkanger towards Trondheim (AADT varies from less than 500 to close to 10000…). Speed limit: 50-80 kph.
Plans include a rerouting at Orkanger to replace a steep and curvy piece of road, improvements of the road in other narrow places and a brand new junction with the E6 at Klett when the latter turns motorway in five years or so. Eventually, a dualling of the Klett-Orkanger stretch may become reality, but then we’re probably talking 25 years into the future.
The nature here isn't as spectacular as the one through the western part of the country, but a pleasant drive anyway.
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