European route E18
|Length:||1,890 km (1,170 mi)|
|West end:||Craigavon, Northern Ireland, (United Kingdom)|
|A75 Stranraer, Wigtownshire, Scotland, (United Kingdom),
E6 Oslo (Norway)
E16 Sandvika (Norway)
|East end:||Saint Petersburg (Russia)|
|Countries:||Northern Ireland, U.K., Scotland, U.K., Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia|
|International E-road network|
European route E18 runs from Craigavon in Northern Ireland in the United Kingdom to Saint Petersburg in Russia, passing through Scotland, Norway, Sweden, and Finland. It is about 1,890 km (1,174 mi) in length.
The route starts in Northern Ireland and runs from Craigavon (M1) – Belfast (M2, A8) – Larne, then to Scotland: Stranraer, Dumfries and Galloway (A75) – Gretna – then England via the (M6) – Carlisle (A69) to Newcastle. Like all European routes, it is not signposted as such in the United Kingdom.
Norway and Sweden
In Norway and Sweden the E18 runs Kristiansand – Arendal – Porsgrunn – Larvik – Sandefjord – Tønsberg – Horten – Drammen – Oslo – Ås – Askim – Karlstad (in Sweden) – Örebro – Västerås – Stockholm/Kapellskär. The length is 415 km in Norway and 510 km in Sweden.
The E18 is motorway on 190 km in Norway and 245 km in Sweden. There are long term plans until around 2030-2040 to build motorways on all remaining parts of E18 in Norway and Sweden except between Ørje and Segmon (at E45).
A flyover carrying the E18 Holmestrand bypass, opened in 2001, partially collapsed in February 2015 following a landslip, necessitating its demolition.
The connection over the Baltic Sea from Sweden to Turku/Naantali Finland is by cruiseferries operated by Silja Line and Viking Line. It is also possible to take a direct route to Helsinki. In theory it is also possible to cross the sea via Åland and the Åboland islands by island hopping over bridges, by cable ferries and ferries along the Archipelago Ring Road, but this route is not signposted as being part of the E18.
In Finland the E18 goes from Åland through southern Finland by way of Turku/Naantali – Salo – Vihti – Espoo – Porvoo – Loviisa – Kotka – Hamina – Vaalimaa till the border with Russia. Crossing the border to Russia used to often require queuing as the volume of traffic using it increased. The situation has since 2009 improved thanks to increased capacity, and a new parking lot constructed by 2016 is expected to solve the problem for good.
In Russia, E18 goes along the M10 highway from Finnish border to Saint Petersburg. The stretch of M10 between Saint Petersburg and the Finnish border will be redesignated to A181 by 2018. The route runs through northwestern Leningrad Oblast and mostly through sparsely populated areas. Since 2003, after opening of Vyborg bypass E18 does not go through Vyborg, though previously it did. Near Saint Petersburg the route runs through suburbs, such as Sestroretsk and Olgino. E18 terminates at the western border of Saint Petersburg.
There are plans to expand the road from one to three lanes in each direction because of the increasing volume of traffic. In 2012 the highway will be connected with the Western Rapid Diameter near Beloostrov by expanded existing junction of M10 with the Zelenogorsk highway. It is likely to be a new terminus of E18.
- Queue situation at the Finnish/Russian border Archived 14 May 2007 at the Wayback Machine
- "Rekkaparkki, latauspisteitä sähköautoille ja kymmeniä siltoja – E18-tien viimeinen osuus valmistuu vuonna 2018". YLE. April 4, 2014. Retrieved April 4, 2014.
- ООО Компания "Кодекс-Люкс": Законодательство, судебная практика, нормы, правила, стандарты России. Kodeks-luks.ru.
- Federal Highway Agency of Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation (in Russian). Rosavtodor.ru.
- (in Russian). Baltinfo.ru (18 August 2011).
- (in Russian). Stpr.ru.
Media related to E 18 at Wikimedia Commons