An improved and ferry-free Coastal Highway Route E39 will connect cities in western Norway more closely. Large business regions, as well as housing-, labour- and service markets will be linked and will provide a better basis for developing Norway's largest export region.

Travel time reduced by half

The route runs from Kristiansand in the south to Trondheim in the north and is approximately 1100 kilometres long. The road runs through the cities of Stavanger, Stord, Bergen, Førde, Ålesund and Molde. The total travel time today is about 21 hours, including seven ferry connections. The aim is to create an improved, and potentially ferry-free E39, which will cut travel time by half. The route will be almost 50 kilometers shorter. Travel time cuts can be achieved by replacing ferries with fixed connections or more frequent ferry departures, as well as improving roads between the fjords along the route.

How to achieve this goal?

The Coastal Highway Route E39 project will contribute to an improvement that will strengthen the conditions for the whole western region of Norway.

The NPRA is developing technological solutions to make it possible to find alternative solutions for crossing the fjords. The work requires a multidisciplinary approach across the following disciplines:

  • safety
  • climate and environment
  • operation and maintenance
  • structural engineering
  • technology qualification
  • materials technology
  • highway Technology
  • natural loads (wind, waves, current)
  • social economics
  • contract strategy
  • transport modeling

Progress status

NTP 2018-2029 presents a series of investments for the coming years. At the beginning of 2020, approx. 10 percent of the planned work on an improved and ferry-free E39 was completed, and in April 2020 the Eiganes tunnel in Stavanger opened. 

Rogfast will be the first ferry replacement projectt. With its 26.7 kilometres, Rogfast will be the world’s longest subsea road tunnel, and also the deepest (392 metres). The project has a cost limit of NOK 16.8 billion, and construction is scheduled to be completed in 2025/2026.

Planning work is underway on the fjord crossings over Bjørnafjorden and Langenuen south of Bergen (regulation plan), and over Nordfjord (municipal plan). The plans for the crossing of the Romsdalsfjord and Julsundet (Ålesund-Molde) have been approved. Technical work is underway for the crossing of the Sulafjord and the Halsafjord, including measurement of waves, currents and wind.


Project Manager is Tore Askeland, the fields of expertise include: 

  • Strategies
  • Implementation, Planning and Construction
  • Social Impacts
  • Fiord Crossings
  • Risk Management
  • Technology Qualification
  • Sustainable Infrastructure
  • Implementation Strategies and Contract Types

Norway's largest infrastructure project