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Infram and the Falun Borlänge region new partners in CLOSER

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

''We are working to ensure that infrastructure and logistics around Sweden's waist are developed for the best and we see becoming a partner in CLOSER as part of this work'', says Sofia Berglund, Infrastructure Strategist and Project Manager at Infram and Falun Borlänge Region AB.


The happy news is that Infram ( Infrastructure for the future) and Falun Borlänge region AB  will become partners to CLOSER. Infram is a collaboration between 38 municipalities and seven regions in the middle of Sweden, the Bergslag region. Falun Borlänge-regionen AB is a regional development company owned by the municipalities of Falun, Borlänge, Gagnef and Säters.

The need for freight transport increases rapidly in the regions that are part of the Infram collaboration when a lot happens at once, such as Northvolt being established in Borlänge, several large data centers being built in Falun and Google planning to establish itself in Avesta. At Hitachi in Ludvika and Smedjebacken, there is a strong expansion with large new recruitments. All while investing more in green and fossil-free steel production at Ovako and SSAB. Even before these investments have started, 40% of Sweden's exports need functioning transport in the middle of Sweden, explains Mats Lindqvist, Infrastructure Strategist and Project Manager at Infram and Falun Borlänge-regionen AB. There is also a strongly expanding hospitality industry which involves large transports of both people and goods.

With the growth and all the transport that passes through our region, we see that it is important to align with CLOSER. We see that the municipalities that are part of Infram and the Falun Borlänge region can benefit from a more efficient collaboration, but can also benefit greatly from being part of the work that CLOSER is doing today regarding freight transport, continues Sofia. 

We asked Mats and Sofia some questions about their challenges and the partnership with CLOSER. 

How do you work with transport efficiency today?

Sofia describes how the four partnerships ( Bergslagsbanan , Bergslagsdiagonalen , Dalabanan and E16 ) have been initiated to focus on physical infrastructure, the core of the work for Falun Borlänge and Infram, as well as to ensure that freight transport can flow in a good way. - But what we as an organization are trying to do now is to focus on the need for transport - What does the need for transport look like and how does it determine which infrastructure we should have?

Our role is to influence so that the four different lines within Infram receive funding based on the requirements and needs that exist. Part of our long-term strategy is to work more on transport efficiency, therefore it is now important for us as an organization to be part of CLOSER's work.


Sofia Berglund

What is your biggest challenge right now?

The biggest challenge is that the infrastructure in the middle of Sweden must be developed in step with what is happening here and in the rest of Sweden so that both input goods and everything that is produced, and people, can be transported through our regions. Our role then is to make sure we get national investment to make it possible, says Mats. 

What do you see as most important regarding your partnership in CLOSER?

Mats continues to describe how they look forward to an exchange of experience with CLOSER. - Both to share with us and of course learn from other cities and regions that are already part of CLOSER.

CLOSER has four focus areas, which do you see as the most important areas for you?

The areas we think will be closest to us to work in are City logistics and Long-distance transport. But since we cover such a large area, there will certainly be interest in Energy Supply and Digitized Logistics eventually, Sofia describes. 



Fact box

The Falun Borlänge region is a development company owned by the municipalities of Falun, Borlänge, Gagnef and Säter. They run development projects and coordinate various activities to increase the region's attractiveness.

Infram  (Infrastructure for the future) is a collaboration between the road and rail lines Bergslagsbanan , Bergslagsdiagonalen , Dalabanan and E16. Route that passes through 7 regions, 38 municipalities and touches 1.2 million inhabitants.