Estonian Railways (EVR), the Estonian state-owned railway infrastructure company, is to begin repairwork on the Tallinn-Keila-Riisipere section of rail beginning with Riisipere Station next Monday.
"Beginning April 30, rail work will be carried out on the western part of Riisipere Station," Riho Vjatkin, head of EVR's construction service, said in a press release on Monday, adding that considering the nature of the work, this may be considered the start of the restoration of the Riisipere-Turba section of railway.
"In order to ensure higher speeds in the direction of Turba, the western direction of Riisipere Station will be completely rebuilt," Vjatkin said. "The location of the station's priority track will change, a new track bed and railway superstructure established, existing switches removed and new switches installed in new locations."
As the planned repairwork will encompass the entire station, there will be no rail traffic at Riisipere Station as the work is underway. During this time, trains will travel as far as Vasalemma, with connections provided by shuttle buses. Construction at Riisipere Station is slated to be completed by May 18.
From Riisipere, work will move on toward Keila Station, where train schedules will remain unaffected. "At Keila Station, the outermost track of the station building will be repaired, while the plan later this summmer is to start work for the construction of a new passenger platform on the land near the water tower," the EVR official described. The new platform will allow for the more flexible organization of rail traffic and an increase in the number of departures.
In the framework of the project, major construction work will also be carried out on sections of rail between Tallinn and Pääsküla from June through September. The work is planned in stages across the entire section of railway, during which the existing two-track section will be used as a one-track section for trains both departng from and arriving at Baltic Station in Tallinn. This will necessitate changes to train schedules as well as the replacement of some trains with shutle buses. Platforms alongside the track to be repaired will likewise be out of service during the repair period.
During the overhaul, the entire superstructure of the railway, including the ballast, rails and sleepers, will be replaced. If necessary, the track bed will be widened, the carrying capacity increased and crossings repaired. The project involves work along 42 kilometers of track; 47 switches will also be replaced at stations.
The overhaul will allow for the raising of passenger train speeds up to 120 kilometers per hour along the section of rail in question, which will translate into time savings for passengers. During the repairs, several details at the end of their life cycle will be replaced, and the use of new materials will increase the safety and reliability of railway traffic while also increasing passenger comfort.
The project is financed from the European Cohesion Fund in the total amount of €23.7 million, the rate of co-financing is 85 percent. A €13.9 million contract with GoTrack has been signed for the repairwork.
Editor: Aili Vahtla