The government prioritises high-speed trains: “Most important to increase capacity”

More money for the railway, and then especially for the long-discussed high-speed lines. Major investments are also being made on the railway in northern Norrland, and on more tracks between Uppsala and Stockholm. Abolish the high-speed trains and invest more in maintenance instead, the Moderates believe.

Nearly SEK 900 billion will be invested in infrastructure during the period 2022 to 2033. The plans have already been presented by the Swedish Transport Administration and the Riksdag has hammered out the actual amount. Now the government has also decided the details to a large extent, and made its own priorities.

Compared with the Swedish Transport Administration’s plan, the government is investing several billion on the railway, including the four-track railway on the Uppsala – Stockholm commuter route, which has had problems for many years. With that, there will also be more money for Malmbanan and Sydostlänken, according to Tomas Eneroth.

250 or 320 km / h

Thus, the government wants to invest in the controversial, and questioned by the opposition high-speed lines that will ultimately connect Stockholm-Malmö and Stockholm-Gothenburg. Initially, there will be more money for some sections.

Read more: Done: SJ buys 25 new high-speed trains: “High speed and really good comfort”

For Tomas Eneroth, it is primarily about increasing capacity. By definition, it will also be possible to run high-speed trains, ie 250 km / h. Whether it will then be possible to drive 320 km / h or not may not be the most important thing, according to the minister. The Swedish Transport Administration may further investigate what is most efficient.

– The most important thing is to increase capacity, he says.

Sometime around 2045, new complete courses could be ready, Eneroth estimates.

M: Too little maintenance

To get advice within the existing framework, the government has chosen to remove some smaller projects. Eneroth mentions, among other things, the Matfors-Blåberget road section, west of Sundsvall.

Not entirely unexpectedly, the Moderates are critical of the government’s priorities. Money is needed for maintenance. M believes that high-speed railways should be abolished.

“Similar queues that we see today at Arlanda, we will unfortunately soon also see on Swedish roads and railways, because the government does not invest what is required in maintenance. The Social Democrats seem to want to cut ties in the election campaign for future billion projects, than fix the potholes that exist here and now on Swedish roads “, writes Maria Stockhaus, traffic policy spokesperson for the Moderates, in a comment to TT.

Hardly enough

At the same time, investments of 197 billion are being made in road maintenance where, among other things, the Essingeleden and the E22 will be improved, a record amount according to Eneroth:

– The roads are worn and we have major challenges that we must meet. We will have safer and better roads. Never before have we built so much new. We need to strengthen the road network so that it can handle a population of ten million inhabitants.

But already when the Swedish Transport Administration presented its plan before Christmas, the authority flagged that the road investments are only enough for more emergency remedial measures than prevention.

Facts: The plan in brief

The infrastructure plan includes a total of investments of SEK 881 billion during the years 2022–2033.

The investment framework comprises SEK 799 billion. In addition, 82 billion will be added from congestion tax, track fees and co-financing.

The 799 billion is distributed as follows:

SEK 165 billion for operation and maintenance of state railways

SEK 197 billion for operation and maintenance of state roads

SEK 437 billion for the development of the transport system, ie new investments where, above all, new trunk lines will consume more than SEK 100 billion.

Source: Government