Construction of the West Link is bound to affect the traffic in Gothenburg. Therefore, extensive work is being done within the project to develop solutions to prevent disruptions and maintain accessibility in the city throughout the construction stage.
When the West Link is being built, many different types of work will be carried out, ranging from excavated shafts in the ground and the blasting of rock tunnels to the construction of tracks and buildings. In order to reduce the amount of disruption in the city, the construction stage will be divided into both sub-sections and stages. In this way, the whole route will not be affected at the same time, and open cuts and working sites will be limited in terms of both size and time. However, much of the work will be conducted in a rock environment beneath the ground, and will therefore not influence the traffic in the city to the same extent.
– The goal is for us to have the same level of availability and accessibility as we have today. It must be possible to reach important locations in Gothenburg – for example schools, workplaces and other destinations, such as Liseberg. People will be able to easily travel in and through the city, says Josefin Larking, Project Manager for Mobility Management.
Priority given to unprotected road users and public transport
The vision is for passengers and other road users to be able to reach their destinations simply and in a safe and reliable manner. Unprotected road users and public transport will be given the highest priority during the West Link construction stage. Those roads that temporarily replace the normal pedestrian and cycle routes will have the same capacity, safety and function as the roads have today. For example, a temporary pedestrian and cycle bridge is being constructed over Rosenlund Canal as a replacement for Rosenlund Bridge, which is to be dismantled during the construction stage.
– We must make sure that there are attractive alternatives such as good cycle routes and accessible bus-stops, says Josefin.
Tram traffic will remain in service throughout the entire construction period. However, it may have to be replaced by buses for shorter periods of time. In certain areas, bus-stops may have to be temporarily relocated, and replacement stops for both trams and buses are being planned by the Swedish Transport Administration together with the City of Gothenburg authorities and Västtrafik. Certain streets may have to be closed off and their traffic rerouted or directed to alternative roads or streets. In other words, the measures that are taken during the construction stage are in the form of both information as well as physical measures.
– Information measures may, for example, include making sure that there is clear signage concerning construction works or traffic diversions so that road users can make active choices on their travel routes. Physical measures include making sure that there are enough bus-stops, that pedestrian and cycle routes are safe and accessible, and reviewing route alignments, service frequency and the possibility for more direct buses for public transport, explains Josefin.