Bosnia and Herzegovina Road Network

By | November 10, 2022

The road network of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The development of the Bosnian road network has suffered greatly from the war in the first half of the 1990s. It has, after Montenegro and Albania, one of the least developed road networks in the Balkans, although this is slowly changing. Since 2001, the A1 from Sarajevo to the north has been under construction. It’s a toll road. There are plans for a north-south highway from Budapest to Dubrovnik, which will also pass through Bosnia. The A1 will be part of this, but it will take years before the highway is complete. Since 1 July 2013, a section of A1 has also been completed on the Croatian border south of Čapljina. There are no concrete plans for other highways, but there are vague plans for an A2from Sarajevo via Bihać to the west. At Banja Luka there is also a highway north to Gradiška, and the Autoput Banja Luka – Doboj connects both towns over a distance of 75 kilometers.

Motorways

According to wholevehicles, Bosnia and Herzegovina has a motorway network that is under development. Due to the mountainous terrain, highway construction is often costly and time consuming. Both entities are developing a network of motorways that meets their own traffic and transport demand, so there is no coherent nationally planned network of motorways.

The first motorway was the diversion of the village of Ilidža from the M17, just outside Sarajevo. This bypass was opened on August 10, 2000, had 2×2 lanes and all intersecting roads were grade separated, although the road had no real connections. The road had the status of a motorway at the time, later it was withdrawn, so that the first section of the A1 between Sarajevo and Podlugovi is usually seen as the country’s first motorway, opened in 2002.

European roads

Bosnia-Herzegovina is rather isolated, so no major E-roads run through the country. The most important is the E73, which connects Budapest to the Adriatic Sea. Other E-roads are of regional character.

European roads in Bosnia and Herzegovina
E65 • E73 • E661 • E761 • E762

Bosnian signage has green signs with white letters for motorways, and blue signs with white letters for main roads. On local roads, yellow signs with black letters are used, similar to the neighboring countries. Previously there were no blue and white signs, and old yellow and black signs can often still be found along main roads. Very local destinations happen with white signs with black letters. The Bosnian signage shows similarities with those in Serbia and Montenegro.

Throughout the country, all new signposts are in 2 scripts: the Latin script and the Cyrillic script. In the (Muslim-Croatian) Federation, the destination is first in the Latin script and the Cyrillic script below, in Republika Srpska it is exactly the other way around.

Road numbering

Bosnia and Herzegovina still partly uses the old Yugoslav road numbering system, it is still used in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The current system was introduced around 1980, at the time with letter suffixes. The fractional system was introduced around 1985, for example the M2b became the M2.2. The road numbering has fractions, whereby branches are indicated with a dot and number suffix. M numbers were previously indicated with a hyphen, but more recently these have been omitted. The M-roads are the main thoroughfares of the country. There are also regional roads, which are hardly ever marked on maps and are sporadically signposted. In the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovinaruns the series R4xx, from zone 4 of the old Yugoslav system. Around 2005 A numbers were introduced for motorways. Currently only the A1 is in use. As far as we know, the section of the M16 motorway north of Banja Luka does not have an A number, but does have an E number, the section of the motorway from Banja Luka to Doboj has the name “9. januar”, but no number.

The urban highway in Sarajevo is numbered BC1, making it the only numbered brza cesta in the country.

There has been a decision since 20 March 2014 to recategorize and renumber the roads in the Federation. These changes were to take effect on 15 November 2014, but on 13 November 2014 it was announced that the implementation of the decision had been postponed until 15 March 2018. On 21 March 2018, it was decided that this extensive program will no longer take place.

Since July 2019, there has also been a proposal to recategorize and number roads in Srpska. The expectation was that this would have to take place in August 2019, this decision was definitively implemented on 31 October 2019.

Bosnia and Herzegovina Road Network