Connecting people: The Denmark Sweden Bridge

The Denmark Sweden bridge, better known in Copenhagen as the 'Oresund Bridge' ('Øresundsbro', in Danish) is a seriously funky piece of engineering work. In fact, it's part bridge and part tunnel.

And now for a little Q&A about the bridge.

Question: Nice shot! But tell me, why does this bridge go to a tiny island? Are there houses on it?

Nope... no houses. It's a man-made island. The 7.8 km bridge ends there and a tunnel starts that take you the rest of the way to Copenhagen. There are train tracks on the bottom of the bridge, and a 4-lane road for cars and trucks on top.

Question: I spent a few days in Copenhagen, and learned the hard way that if you board the train at the wrong side of the track at Kastrup Copenhagen airport, you end up crossing the bridge, as the next stop Malmo, Sweden!! Does this happen often?

Ha, ha! Pretty hard to collect statistics on that particular subject, but I'm pretty sure it happens a lot!

Question: So where does the bridge start and end?

The bridge starts in Skåne, Sweden (in the bottom of the picture) just south of the city of Malmo. The bridge then ends on a man-made island in the middle of Øresund, where a tunnel starts that goes the rest of the way to Sealand, Denmark where it surfaces just outside the Copenhagen Airport (in the top of the picture).

Question: Wow, so it goes underground? Sweet! When was it built?

Indeed, it's a fantastic way to get Denmark from Sweden. Construction began in 1995 and was officially opened in July 2000.

Question: How does it cost to get across?

The price is about 275 danish kroner to drive ...much cheaper if you take the train...I believe around 100 kroner. :-)

Question: Can you see the Denmark Sweden bridge from Copenhagen?

In some places, yes. If you are by the water in Amager, for example, at the delightful Amager Standparken (beach park) in the summertime, you'll be able to get a good glimpse of it. You can also see it from Charlottelund and Hellerup, again if you go to one of the beaches there. Unfortunately, you can't see it from the centre of Copenhagen - unless you climb one of the tallest buildings, such as the Church of Our Saviour (Vor Frelsers Kirke, in Danish). The Denmark Sweden bridge is also a great sight when you are taking off or landing by plane from Kastrup Airport.

Question: Has it brought Denmark and Sweden closer together?

Well, you could argue that it has - at least it has brought the Skåne region of Sweden closer. Now it takes about 20 minutes to get across the Oresund, whereas before this crossing took an hour by ferry. And more and more Danes are choosing to live in Malmø and the surrounding area - while still working in Copenhagen - for tax reasons and because the real estate is cheaper. This probably wouldn't be happening to the same extent without the bridge. If you look on both sides of the bridge, you're talking about a population of some 3.5 million inhabitants.

1 Response to "Connecting people: The Denmark Sweden Bridge"

  1. Jacob says:

    We're also going to build a bridge to Germany.

    And there are discussions for another bridge to Sweden ( Helsingør -> Helsingborg.

    Also a mega project for a connection from West Zealand to Århus is on the table.

    When the Great Belt connection was finished some 12 years ago is was the longest suspension bridge in World. But then some Japanese had to beat us.

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