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Roads in Finland
#1
Was bored and decided to write about roads in Finland.

There are three types of roads in Finland:

Highways / Public roads - Numbered, state owned

Streets - Unnumbered, owned by municipalities

Private roads - Unnumbered. Those receiving funding from a municipality or another public entity can be used by anyone.

The numbering system is straightforward. The classification depends on the number.

1 - 39: Primary highways / Class I highways

These form the backbone of Finland's road network. They connect the largest cities and any other notable locations. A typical primary highway is a standard two-lane road. Some of the busier ones have been upgraded. Unlike some countries, Finland doesn't have a separate numbering system for motorways. Instead, they are (usually) primary highways. Generally, motorways are constructed only if absolutely required. In most areas a 2 + 1 lane road is preferred because it is 'better' (cheaper).

40 - 99: Secondary highways / Class II highways / A-class secondary highways

These fill in the gaps in the main highway network and connect less populous cities. Most of them are basic two-lane roads, though some may be motorways near the larger cities.

100 - 999: Regional roads / Highways / B-class secondary highways

These roads are not important for long distance travel, but they are vital for regional traffic. Each region has roads with certain numbers. For example, roads 600 - 659 are located in Central Finland. They tend to be standard two-lane roads, but near major cities they may be dual carriageways, for example 101, which is also Finland's busiest road (over 100,000 vehicles/day). In the other end, some of the less used ones may be unpaved.

There are two special types of regional roads. First are the 1x0 roads, which are former alignments of primary roads. For example 130 is the old route of 3. Note that these are generally the second newest alignments, some roads have been reconstructed several times. 4 in particular has had at least four alignments north of Helsinki. The second special type is airport roads. For some reason it has been decided that these must be regional roads, even if their length is under a kilometre. They are also unsigned, unlike the other regional roads.

1000 - 9999: Connector roads / Other public roads / Highways / C-class secondary highways

These roads connect minor locations to the rest of the network, hence the name. The first three digits tell the regional road they connect to. As an example, 6211 connects to 621. They might not always touch, but are generally located near the respective regional roads. Their quality varies wildly from motorways to gravel roads, but the average connector road is a narrow-ish two-lane road.

Again, there are special types of connector roads. Those ending with a zero are former regional roads. For example, 6110 was formerly 611. A zero isn't always used (e.g. 613 > 6134) and some former regional roads might've been merged into other roads. Sometimes they are former alignments (such as 6040, which is the old alignment of 604 (current one was formerly part of 603)). Another special type is roads that lead to railway stations. They are among the shortest numbered roads, sometimes barely 100 metres. Because many small stations have been closed, a great number of these roads have also been decomissioned, leaving gaps (e.g. 6001 - 6006 have been deleted, leaving 6007 as the only road connecting to former 600 (later 65, now 23)).

While connector roads are usually signed, there are exceptions, mostly railway station roads and roads inside cities (some of which are gradually being reclassified as streets).

11000 - 19999: Connector roads / Local roads / Village roads

This category contains the rest of state owned highways. They're always unsigned and thus the numbering doesn't really follow any clear logic.

20001 - 29999: Major ramps

Note that all ramps of a single interchange share the same number. Has no relation to exit numbers.


30001 - 31999: Minor ramps

Includes roundabouts (which technically split roads into halves)

40001 - 49999: Numbered streets

50001 - 51999: Paths suitable for cars

52001 - 52999: Other paths

60001 - 60999: Winter roads (major)

61001 - 61999: Winter roads (minor)

70001 - 79999: Footways alongside major roads

80001 - 89999: Footways alongside minor roads

90001 - 99999: Footways alongside ramps

Additional systems:

Trunk roads - Consists of heavily used roads regardless of their classification. Not signposted in any special way.

E roads - Signed, but are always concurrent with a national highway.

TEN roads - Part of the Trans European Network managed by the EU. Mostly overlaps the E roads and trunk roads. Not signed in any special way.

Tourism roads - Roads with several places of interest along the way.

Museum roads - Roads with historical importance.

Brief history:

While proposed earlier (with variations in the routes), the numbering became a thing in 1938, with roads 1 - 21 and 51 - 82. Some of these were very short-lived because they were given to Stalin. Until around the 60s, most of the roads were still unpaved and curvy. In 1965 the 'lower network' got 3 - 5 digit numbers. In 1996 a major reform happened, with several routes being reclassified. Many less important three digit roads were downgraded by adding a zero to the end. Some routes were also 'upgraded'. 'Upgraded' in quotes, because only the number was changed, the actual road was not improved, and some are still left in such state (cough 18 and 58 cough).

Fun facts:

First (actual) motorway - 1962 (first motorway-like road in the late 50s)
Shortest secondary highway - 98, about 400 metres
Decomissioned four times - 60 (last version existed 1996-2011)
Changed number three times - several, for example (18 > 490 > 70 > 9) and (300 > 45 > 60 > 3/9) and (13 > 59 > 4 > 644)
Only decomissioned motorway - 6018
From lowest to highest - 6961 > 18 (in 1996)
Amount of cloverleaf interchanges - 2 (9/40 and 9/43522)
Interchange with 6 (or 8) roads - 4/9/13/18/23/6018, plus E63/E75
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#2
Probably chucking in random military knowledge, but is there roads named after famous Finns who did stuff (say like Simo Hayha Road)
"Zulus! Thousands of 'em!"
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#3
(09-10-2019, 01:57 PM)neddyfram Wrote: Probably chucking in random military knowledge, but is there roads named after famous Finns who did stuff (say like Simo Hayha Road)

Mostly streets in larger cities.
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