The project will create comprehensive assessment of FinEst Transport Link and a plan for the future fixed link between Helsinki and Tallinn. The vision of the fixed link is already a reality. It has been discussed by experts, politicians and the general public for 20 years. The pre-feasibility study in TalsinkiFIX Seed Money project presented a result that the vision might be also technically and economically possible. All actors involved in Helsinki-Tallinn transports already have to take this vision into account when planning new investments.
The project focuses in wider Finnish-Estonian perspective, European TEN-T perspective, transport technology development, environmental aspects and in changing socio-economic context of the emerging twin-city region. Assessment and development of the fixed link option and its’ impacts pave the way for deeper integration of regional economies, twin-city and regional co-operation, and for achieving better integration in the multimodal cross-border transport systems with significant impact on lowering the CO2 emissions.
The project will look and explore the required development needs of traffic between Helsinki and Tallinn in the long run. As a main result it will create preconditions and strategy for 80% saving on travel time of passengers and cargo in Helsinki-Tallinn link. The project will complement and support actions in other related projects by outlining, analyzing and assessing the fixed link. It will also assess alternative ways of developing transport operations and physical infrastructures in the era of digitalization of mobility.
The partnership is based on trilateral cross-border cooperation: cities responsible of actual transport nodes, regions responsible of regional spatial planning, including transport networks, and the state authorities responsible of national transport policy development and representing national interests towards TEN-T policies.
Expected Results (EN):
R3.1. Travel time of passengers
Expected Outputs (EN):
The Project’s contribution to the result indicators have to be seen in long perspective. Setting preconditions to reach the target of removing the bottleneck between Finland and Estonia in the long run when the fixed link and the fast rail connection is in operation, will reduce travel time of passengers from 2,5 hours to even 30 minutes, i.e. ultimately 80% reduction. Similarly the capacity in cargo transportation is very big in shortening delivery times when the fixed train link is in operation. The fixed link traffic is expected to triple in the first 10 years from 5 to 15 million trips and ferry transportation is expected to maintain its position and volumes. Potentially 25 000 daily commuters, 5 million business and leisure trips, 1.3 million passenger cars and 8.4 million tons of cargo is expected after first 10 years of operation.
The impact on transport flows of goods can be considerable also in short run. A clear prospect of the fixed link encourages transport operators to develop their offers and transportation chains based on Rail Baltica (operative for cargo in 2017).
The results of the studies, assessments and benchmarks conducted in the project, and the participatory process of stakeholders pave the way for the next steps in the long process of decision making, planning, and designing the fixed link. These activities are required as part of the comprehensive transport assessment and a plan which are the main result of the Project for the political decision-makers.
The plan and strategy for decision-makers made by the Project will reduce uncertainty on long term transport and mobility options and developments in the cross-border region. A strategy and decision-making without well-grounded conclusions based on feasibility studies on the fixed link would not reduce risks and uncertainties faced by the investors in the transport sector. By reducing uncertainty the project contributes in short term improvements in passenger transports.