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Helsinki-Tallinn tunnel

Helsinki-Tallinn tunnel

The Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council together with its partners, the Harju County Government, the cities of Helsinki and Tallinn, the Estonian Ministry of Economic Affairs & Communications and the Finnish Ministry of Transport & Communications will study the implementation opportunities from technical, economic and social perspectives for the Helsinki-Tallinn railway tunnel. This tunnel will run  between the Finland and Estonia capitals  and called the FinEst Link.

The FinEst Link project will thoroughly study the profitability of the construction of the tunnel. The study will examine the technical possibilities for the construction of a tunnel and its potential effects on the environment. Security issues will also be examined as well as the tunnels economic benefits when compared to existing ferry services.

In early 2015, the cities of Helsinki and Tallinn, the Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council and the Harju County Government published a pre-feasibility study based on simple calculations showing that the Helsinki to Tallinn railway tunnel would be an economically profitable investment. The early report states that an increase of 30 per cent in the current passenger and freight traffic would cover more than half of the expenses of the tunnel. The project would also call for private investors and in order to cover the construction costs of the railway, a 40 per cent EU grant would be required.

The EU funding for the Central Baltic Programme was confirmed on the 14th June. The two-year project will examine the tunnel project in terms of technology, economy and competitiveness.

In addition, the initiative prepared by the City of Helsinki and the City of Tallinn aiming to improve the transport flows in the harbours was approved for funding. The combined funding for the two projects is €3.1 million. The  FinEst Link project budget  is 1.3 million euros, 75 % of which is to be provided by the EU’s Central Baltic Programme 2014-2020 and the rest by Finland and Estonia. Visit http://www.uudenmaanliitto.fi/en and http://www.hel.fi/www/uutiset/en. 25/16.