The Ministry of Economy said that after conducting a study it prefers the Rail Baltic high-speed rail to pass around the proposed Nabala nature reserve on its eastern side, and for the track to go through - not pass around - the city of Pärnu.
Out of the three possibilities weighed by the ministry for the track in Harju County, the eastern route is the cheapest and least damaging to nature, the ministry's study found.
Diverting the track through the city of Pärnu would be 19 million euros more expensive and 4 kilometers longer, but would give Estonia's fourth-largest city a boost. The plan has received the approval of the Pärnu City Government.
The final plans for the project's Estonian leg should be completed next year.