Two Countries Reconnect

The Øresund Link connecting Sweden and Denmark is 8 kilometres (5 miles) of bridge, 4 kilometres of artificially made island, called Pepparholm, and 3.5 kilometres of tunnel.  This photo shows the approach to the island.

bridge between Sweden and DenmarkReducing travel between Sweden and Denmark to a mere 20 minutes, the link opened in 2000, three months ahead of schedule despite such unexpected hazards as the discovery of 16 unexploded World War II bombs on the seafloor.

bridge between Denmark and SwedenThis combined road/rail bridge with a four-lane highway on the upper deck and a two-track railway on the lower deck, ferries 60,000 people daily between the two countries – at a toll of €43 ($56 US) for a standard car;  a motorcycle is €23 ($30 US) but the train is a mere €9 ($12 US).

Oresund bridge between Sweden and Denmarkbrdige between Sweden and DenmarkDenmark and Sweden are linked once more —7,000 years after rising sea levels accompanying the end of the Ice Age severed the dry-land connection between the two.

In Denmark (left side in photo below), the link begins with a 2.2-mile underwater tunnel. The tunnel emerges from the water onto a roadway on a 2.5-mile artificial island, Pepparholm, which appears as a bright white shape to the south of the natural island of Saltholm. The cable-supported Oresund Bridge stretches 4.9 miles across the eastern part of the Strait toward Sweden, making a thin white line across the image.

Image Credit: NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team
Image Credit: NASA/GSFC/METI/ERSDAC/JAROS, and U.S./Japan ASTER Science Team

Pepparholm?  Saltholm?  Yes, some humour was applied in the naming of the artificial island 😉

Related post: We build too many bridges

Jake’s Sunday Post:  Bridges

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16 thoughts on “Two Countries Reconnect

  1. I really enjoyed reading this because I just became familiar with this bridge when I did a post on the Mackinaw Bridge connecting Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas. Great photos.

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  2. Awesome.What an amazing imagination by the engineers!!! I can’t believe that it was possible to build a tunnel- bridge that long!! It is a beautiful creation by human being!!

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    1. It captures my imagination – disappearing underground (under the sea!) and then emerging and rising up over the sea. I also liked the Pepparholm and Saltholm 🙂

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  3. Cool! I still remember when I was a kid and our train pulled into a tunnel in Scandanavia. All the passengers got out so we thought the train had broken down. NO, it had pulled onto a ship which ferried us across the water. We were ASTOUNDED! The bridge looks way cool!

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    1. We sailed under the Oresund bridge and didn’t have the opportunity to cross it but I think it would have been an experience in itself – like your tunnel to ferry experience.

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