The Oslo toll ring and infrastructure investment scheme


N Fearnley
J Lian

Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe


When the toll ring around Oslo was established 1 February 1990, it was part of a major scheme to speed up road investments called the “Oslo Package 1”. A condition for the scheme was that twenty percent of the revenue be allocated to public transport investments, specifically bus, tram and metro services, in the Greater Oslo area. A substantial sum of money was raised -and numerous measures implemented- during the decade the scheme was up and running. Our paper studies the impact of these major investments in road and public transport infrastructure on car travel and on public transport services and performance. The paper comprises of three parts: Firstly, it describes the important features of the scheme. Emphasis is placed on the funding mechanisms (toll ring, government co-funding) and on description of investments that affected public transport operations. Secondly, the effects for public transport operations and performance are investigated. We look at developments in aggregate indicators like operating costs, travel patterns, modal split etc. Next, we establish a demand model, which despite fairly good statistical performance fails to explain much of the variation in patronage by changes in fares and service levels. It is concluded that qualitative improvements, like travel time, ride comfort, ease of interchange, express routes, fully connected metro services etc, i.e. improvements attributable to Oslo Package 1, have played an important role. Then the views and experiences described by the public transport operators are being presented. Thirdly, the effects on car travel (traffic volumes, travel times and timing) are analysed. It is concluded that the overall volume of traffic and the traffic volume in the three broad sectors of the regions is only to a minor extent influenced by the investment program. Increase in income, labour and population are more important as explanatory factors. The effects of land use changes on car travel and the role of trunk road investments in land use changes are also discussed. Finally, main findings are summed up and conclusions drawn.


Permission to publish abstract given by AET.