Tallinn decides which new tram line to built next

Tram tracks to be installed in the Old Harbor.
Tram tracks to be installed in the Old Harbor. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The Tallinn municipal administration is deciding which new tram line to built next. All three preferred lines, Liivalaia, Järve and Pelgulinna, could be completed by the end of the decade, Deputy Mayor Vladimir Svet (Center) said.

Climate Minister Kristen Michal (Reform) approved €40 million for new infrastructure in Tallinn, including new tram lines. Tallinn has not yet decided which new line will be constructed  first.

According to last year's study, the Tehnika (Kristiine)-Liivalaia line has the most potential, while the Tondi line extension to Järve, and the Pelgulinna line were among the most popular suggestions as well. Deputy Mayor Svet (Center) said all three lines will be built.

The next tram line will be decided in conjunction with the ministry since it has to meet "sustainable mobility needs and create good urban spaces, as well as contribute to reducing car congestion and the environmental footprint of transport," Svet explained.

Pelguranna, Järve, and Liivalaia are three proposed tram routes that will be explored with the ministry. "They all have their advantages and disadvantages," the deputy mayor said.

The issue with the Liivalaia line is that the adjacent Suur Ameerika street is rather narrow, which means that some smaller buildings would have to be demolished. The Liivalaia line, on the other hand, could take you right into the heart of the Kristiine district. The same problem plagues the Pelguranna line, due to the narrow Puhangu street, where the tram would pass too close to private homes, Svet said.

"In terms of comparison, the Liivalaia and Järve lines are somewhat similar projects, as they both have an existing road infrastructure," he said. "Pelguranna is a bit of a different type of undertaking as the tram's proposed route does not parallel roadways. But given the scale of the population growth and the district expansion plans, we would have to develop new ways of getting around there."

"In other words, these projects are all viable. They would all compete with cars and offer people a better way to get around by public transport," the deputy mayor said.

Svet also said that the decision will most likely be made in the autumn. "We understand that all of these investments in tram lines, public transportation hubs, and cycle paths should be considered in conjunction. If we were to build a tramway on Liivalaia or Pärnu maantee, we would also build a complete urban environment at the same time, including bike lanes."

The deputy mayor said that the construction of all three tram lines is slated to be completed by the end of the decade. "The current plan is to receive funding from the European Union and use it until 2029 or, at the latest 2030, when the project is expected to be finilized."

Five potential new lines for Tallinn. Source: Liikuvusagentuur, T-Model


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Editor: Kristina Kersa

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