New tunnel opens quietly

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State highway officials have opened the eastbound section of a new underwater tunnel in Oslo that’s aimed at diverting traffic away from the city’s waterfront, which is under redevelopment. Some motorists, though, got confused.

Newspaper Aftenposten reported that a lack of signs made it easy to unwittingly wind up heading north out of town. Traffic heading east and then south on the E18 should exit at “Sentrum Ø” before heading into the new tunnel.

Highway officials disagreed that their signage was inadequate, pointing out that it had all been “incredibly carefully planned.” They would evaluate traffic flows, though, to determine whether any improvement was warranted.

The westbound tunnel will open later this year and then grand festivities are planned. The tunnel runs under the harbour at Bjørvika, just south of Oslo’s new Opera House, and will remove thru-traffic from city streets in the Bjørvika area. That’s where new office and apartment buildings are going up, and where several new museums and city library are planned.

SEE ALSO: Historic day on the waterfront

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