Wetland in Torsviken.

The Port of Gothenburg has collaborated with actors including the Swedish Transport Administration and local ornithological associations to create an area of shallows for wading birds in Torsviken. The wetland is one way of restoring nature after the area had been used to deposit dredging spoils for almost forty years.

Since way back in the 1970s, the Port of Gothenburg had a permit to deposit contaminated dredging spoils in Torsviken, near the port of Hisingen. The masses were primarily deposited in a contained area in the southern part of the bay. This permit expired in 2009. Since then, the Port of Gothenburg has been working to cover the masses and as far as possible to restore the area to its original state, with a rich variety of wildlife.

Clean clay from construction of tunnel.

Since 2009, the Port of Gothenburg has been working to cover the masses and as far as possible to restore the area to its original state, with a rich variety of wildlife. Before the wetland could be created, the site needed to be reinforced and the area of soils covered with clean material. Clay from the construction of the Marieholm Tunnel in Gothenburg was used as a protective barrier to the contaminated soil. Walls, islands and an inlet and outlet system were built for the actual wetland in the period 2018–2021. The basin was filled with water in the late spring of 2021.

About dredging spoils.

The area covers around 16.6 hectares, with the surface around 2.5 metres above sea level and the bottom of the spoils about 3–4 metres beneath the surface of the sea. Down the years, around 1.3 million cubic metres of dredging spoils have been deposited at the site. The dredging deposits have now been finally covered with 0.5–1 metre of clean mass.

About the wetland.

The wetland covers around 7 hectares. The basin includes three islands. The water in the wetland will vary with the seasons, from 20 cm at its lowest to 50 cm at its highest. The bottom of the basin is 3.5 metres above sea level. The walls and islands are one metre high, calculated from the bottom of the basin. The slopes of the basin are at an angle of around 6 degrees.

Experience the rich wildlife.

The wetland is adjacent to the Torsviken bird sanctuary. There is a footpath around the whole area. The footpath was created in collaboration with the Parks and Landscape Administration and Västra Hisingen. The Port of Gothenburg hopes to be able to offer our neighbours rich wildlife and outdoor activities in Torsviken.

“The wetland will benefit a group of protected species, which will now have a nutritious biotope, and we’ve already seen plenty of waders having been attracted to the area. In birdwatching circles, many have been amazed that there’s been such a rapid response to the measures,” says Kåre Ström from Gothenburg Ornithological Association’s Torslanda Committee in a press release.

The general public, who are welcome to take a walk along the path that has been created, are encouraged to show respect to wildlife. The wetland has been created just to the west of Risholmen. You can access it through the two entrances to the west of the roundabout at Amhult and from highway 155, north of the area.

If you're lucky, you might see a Silky Egret take a dip in the wetland for birds created by the Port of Gothenburg. Photo: Rune Blomgren