Reconstruction and expansion work at harbour Terminal D at Lootsi 13/14 in Tallinn is to begin tomorrow, Monday, and will continue for the best part of two years.
Parts of the terminal will be closed to passengers as a result.
The passenger harbour comes under the auspices of the Port of Tallinn (Tallinna Sadam), a hitherto State-owned company which was floated on the stock exchange last month.
"Starting from June 25, passengers heading to Helsinki will be using the same area that had been designated only for the boarding of those passengers going to Stockholm,'' said Ingrid Berezin, Port of Tallinn cruise and ferry business manager.
Passengers arriving in Tallinn at Terminal D will also face a somewhat longer walk from the ferry/cruise ship than had previously been the case, it is reported.
"We ask passengers to carefully follow the signs installed in the terminal and allow a little more time to get through the terminal - if needed, passengers can approach terminal employees or those of Tallink [the ferry company operating out of Terminal D – ed.] for assistance," Berezin went on.
€17 million construction work
Construction company Nordecon AS signed an agreement with AS Tallinna Sadam on June 12 for the work, which will cost a reported €17 million.
The work will double the area of the three-storey terminal building to 16,107 m2, with gallery-style walkways being removed and new façades installed as well as upgrades to technological systems being put in place.
The work is scheduled to finish in May 2020.
Peeter Nõgu, chief infrastructure development officer at Tallinna Sadam, explained how the sheer volume of passengers coming trough Terminal D annually necessitated the improvements.
Around six million passengers pass through Terminal D every year, whereas it was designed to accommodate less than half that figure, he said.
''Ships have got larger and schedules have become tighter, which is why it is necessary to simultaneously service several thousand customers at the terminal at any one time,''Mr. Nõgu said.
''Shipping companies have made substantial investments, but the port must also keep up with those developments to offer their passengers the best travelling experience, " he went on.
Editor: Andrew Whyte