Norwegian national road

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National road and European route E39 at Knarvik, Hordaland.

Norwegian national roads (Norwegian: Riksvei/Riksveg abbr. Rv; literally: road of the rike/realm), are roads thus categorized by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration (Statens vegvesen) which also maintains them. In 2007 there were 27,343 kilometers (16,990 mi) of this class of Norwegian roads, which constituted 29.4% of public roads in Norway.[1]

From 2010, after an administrative reform, most of the national roads were transferred to the counties. They are now called county roads along with the already existing county roads. 17,200 kilometers (10,700 mi) of national roads were transferred along with an annual compensation of 6.9 billion NOK for maintenance. So as of January 1, 2010 there were 10,451 kilometers (6,494 mi) of national roads left.

The national roads are selected by the criteria of being important for long-distance travel. Also some roads connecting to primary airports are included.

The national roads are divided into two categories: European routes and other national roads. The route signs for the European routes have an "E" preceding the national road number and the sign is green with white script. Other national roads are also designated using green signs.

Former national roads[edit]

All national roads have an asphalt concrete cover. Exceptions are some former national roads that have been given special status or protection. The "gravel roads package" was a governmental plan which saw to it that all national roads that hadn't been given special value in the National Protection Plan for Roads, Bridges, and Road-Related Cultural Heritage (Nasjonal verneplan for veger, bruer og vegrelaterte kulturminner) received asphalt covering. Norwegian National Road 716 between Bergli and Valen in Frøya, Sør-Trøndelag was the last regular stretch of national road with a gravel coating. The last two remaining kilometers were asphalted on December 17, 2003 with participation by among others Minister of Transport and Communications Torild Skogsholm.

Norwegian former national roads that are being maintained as gravel roads according to the protection plan are road 252 (TyinEidsbugarden), road 258 (Grotli-Ospeli bru) and road 886 (Bjørnstad–Jacobselv). All these roads have after the reform been converted to county roads.

The organization of national, county and village roads (later municipal roads) was introduced in 1931. Starting in 1912 the roads had been divided into main roads ("hovedveier") and village roads ("bygdeveier"). In 1931 signposted numbers for national roads were introduced. The main road were two digit ending with zero, for example road 50 Oslo–Kirkenes. The main roads in Østfold were numbered 1–9 based on an older local system. In 1965 a new system which included E-roads was introduced, and most of it is still used today (2016).

Extreme records of Norwegian national roads[edit]

Record Route measue end points / location
Longest national road in Norway
Longest European route in Norway
E 6 2627.9 km Svinesund - Kirkenes
Longest European route running partially through Norway E 75 4340 km Vardø - Sitia in Greece
Shortest European route in Norway E 105 15 km Kirkenes - Storskog border
Shortest other national road Rv 562 32 m Nøstetorget in Bergen
Highest national road mountain pass Rv 7 1.250 m AMSL Hardangervidda
Longest national road tunnel E 16 24.510 km Lærdal Tunnel (world record)
Longest national road bridge E 18 1892 m Drammen Bridge
Lowest national road E 39 260 m AMSL Bømlafjord Tunnel
Longest domestic ferry stretch Rv 80 192 km (8–9 hours) Bodø - Røst - Værøy - Moskenes[2]
National road with the most ferry stretches (domestically) E 39 8 Trondheim - Kristiansand[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ (in Norwegian) Statistisk sentralbyrå: Table 416: Offentlige veier etter fylke 1. januar 2007 Archived 2008-01-14 at the Wayback Machine (public roads by county as of January 1, 2007) from Statistisk sentralbyrå
    Note: The numbers encompass city streets. For municipal roads not all municipalities are up to date.
  2. ^ Bodø - Røst, 103 km, up to 5 hours 15 min)"Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-09-27.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link). Also, Hurtigruten is usually capable of transporting cars and can in those cases be considered a ferry. It takes 6 days.
  3. ^ E39 has nine ferries in altogether, which may be a world record. There are nine ferry stretches on European routes in Norway, eight on E39, 1 on E6