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The Botniabana (Bothnia Line) is the name of a new railway line currently under construction in northern Sweden.


Due for completion in August 2010, the Botniabana will add about 190 km of X2000-capable high-speed rail capacity, with 140 bridges and more than 25 km of tunnels. Its route is from Kramfors airport via Örnsköldsvik to Umeå.

Construction is being carried out by Botniabanan AB, a company owned 91% by the Swedish state, and 9% by the regional governments of Kramfors, Örnsköldsvik, Nordmaling and Umeå. Work began on the line in 1999, and reached the half-way stage at the end of 2005. When it is completed, and Botniabanen AB has recovered its investment, ownership of the line will pass to Banverket, the Swedish railway authority.

It is intended that the Botniabana will compete with road transport using the E4, which is a main road currently carrying heavy freight traffic.

This line is being built as a single track (although prepared for a second track), and will have 22 passing sidings. The maximum axle weight will be 25 tons. Speed limits are 120 km/h for freight trains, and 250 km/h for passenger trains. All curves except two (in Örnsköldsvik, 800 m, in Nordmaling, 2000 m) will have a radius of 3200 m or greater. Maximum grade is one per cent.

Times, distances and average speed

Connection Time Distance Average speed
Örnsköldsvik-Umeå 0:40 112 km 165 km/h (inter-city)
Kramfors-Örnsköldsvik 0:35 86 km 150 km/h (inter-city)
Sundsvall-Umeå 2:20 300 km 130 km/h
Örnsköldsvik-Umeå 0:55 112 km 120 km/h (regional)

The trains will run at 200 km/h for the first years, with a speed increase in the future.


A railway line along the coast of Northern Sweden is much needed. There is a lack of capacity on the existing main line (further inland) due to lower speed limits, curves and grades. The Bothnia line will also improve passenger transport in the area, reducing the travel time between Umeå and Örnsköldsvik to 40 - 50 minutes by high-speed train. It will also be served by commuter trains, at a promised frequency of at least 6 trains in each direction.


Botniabanan ends near the Kramfors airport at the present railway line Ådalsbanan, which goes Långsele-Kramfors-Härnösand-Sundsvall. The distance from the connection to Sundsvall is 101 km. This railway was built 1890-1925, and is rather curvy and in a bad condition. It has almost only freight traffic today. Ådalsbanan will be improved along the existing route to allow higher speeds, 100-160 km/h, than today. This means new rails, new catenary, new signal system, better road crossings etc. A few parts of it north of Härnösand, totalling 29 km will have a new route, of same standard as Botniabanan. This will be finished when the Botniabanan is opened 2010. The reason for keeping most of the existing embankment is that the advantage of building a new railway is smaller when there already is a railway, but the costs are the same as if there was no railway, which is the case along Botniabanan.

External links

nn:Botniabanan sv:Botniabanan