High North cross-border highway under construction

Construction work on E105 between the old check-point and Borisoglebsk.

No cold international climate stops Norway and Russia to invest heavily in cross-border road infrastructure. Excavators and dump trucks work day and night upgrading Russia’s highway to NATO.


It is the northernmost segment of the Russia’s highway towards the Norwegian border that now is under construction. The around 17 kilometers distance will get top modern standard, 12 meters wide and very few curves. 

A total of 3,6 billion roubles (€46 million) of federal money will be invested in the project, as previously reported by BarentsObserver.

Wider and less curves. Russia’s new highway towards Norway is under construction.

The E105 (M18) road is linking the Kola Peninsula with Finnmark in Norway and is the only highway from Russia to a NATO-country in northern Europe.

Two years ago, the part of the road from Zapolyarny to the old custom check-point opened after a two years construction period. Also other parts of the E105 between Murmansk and Zapolyarny are upgraded over the last few years with new bridges and wider lanes.

When upgrades are completed all the way to the Borisoglebsk check-point in 2018, the road will have a capacity of 6.000 cars per day. Next spring, reconstruction of the border check-point itself is stipulated to start with funding from the EU-Russia cross-border financial Interreg program Kolarctic. 

Interesting to note; both the current last few kilometers of the Russian road and today’s border check-point are financed with grants from Norway. The road was upgraded in 2004 and the check-point opened in January 2003.

Construction work on E105 highway on the Norwegian side of the border.

Also the E105 highway on the Norwegian side of the border sees a serious upgrade. This winter, construction has started on the part of the road from the Pasvik River towards Hesseng where E105 meets E6.

A tunnel and a new bridge will shorten the distance and improve the quality of the road. 

The Norwegian part of the road will be ready by the summer 2016, reports Norwegian Public Roads Administration.

Paradoxically, the investments in roads and border infrastructure between Russia and Norway come as the number of border-crossers plummets. In December, traffic over the Russian-Norwegian border was down 30 percent compared with the same period in 2013 and the trend continued the first week of January 2014 with a 37 percent year-on year drop.