Construction of Rail Baltica from Lithuania to Latvian border begins
The Rail Baltica project team in Lithuania officially launched the start of construction of the railway section towards the Latvian border last week. A symbolic road sign in Čiūdai Village in Lithuania was put up to mark the start of construction of the new high-speed railway, which will connect the Baltics to the European network.
The project starts off with constructing access roads for the logistics and material supply for the railway construction. “In the coming months, we will also start the construction of the railway itself”, says Karolis Sankovski, CEO of LTG Infra, the company responsible for the implementation of the Rail Baltica project in Lithuania.
He calls it a “significant event in the history of Lithuanian railway infrastructure” and “an important step towards more convenient logistics for business and ecological transport in the implementation of the Green Deal policy”. The created infrastructure should allow residents to move much faster and easier between neighbouring countries and connect with other European countries because the line will be in European standard gauge. Passenger trains will be able to run with a speed of 249 kilometres per hour. “In addition, the project is especially important for ensuring military mobility”, says Sankovski.
First roads, then rail
The first works will be carried out by road construction company Eurovia Lietuva, the successful tenderer. First of all, 16 new local access motor roads will be built which will allow residents to access their land parcels when the construction of the railway is finished. Two service roads dedicated for the maintenance of the railway line will also be constructed, the total length of new local roads comprising approximately 18.3 kilometres.
The sidings from access roads will be installed in places where it is not possible to install separate roads for the maintenance of railway infrastructure elements. Eurovia Lietuva will also install surface water networks, carry out the reconstruction of reclamation structures, and connect a pumping station. The works are to be completed before June 2023, the contract value amounting to 6.6 million euros.
Rail Baltica Lithuania
For Rail Baltica in Lithuania, also on the planning this year is the start of construction of the railway bridge over the Neris River near Jonava. This will be the longest railway bridge in the Baltic States with more than 1.5 kilometres. Rail Baltica is the largest railway infrastructure project in the history of the Baltic States, and will be an electrified European double-gauge railway line from Warsaw via Kaunas and Riga to Tallinn. The largest section will be in Lithuania with 392 kilometres, the total length will reach 870 kilometres with 264 kilometres in Latvia and 213 kilometres in Estonia.