Here is a compilation of further information on the One-hour Turku Rail Link and its impacts.
The project company will be handling the planning of the Espoo–Salo direct railway line and the Salo–Turku double-track railway line until the construction is ready to begin.
The high-speed rail link between Helsinki and Turku consists of four parts: the Espoo regional railway line, the new direct Espoo–Salo railway line, the Salo–Turku double-track railway line, and developing the Turku rail yard area.
The project company will not be handling the development of the Espoo regional railway line nor the Turku rail yard area.
Once the one-hour Turku rail link is completed, the travel time by train between Helsinki Central railway station and Turku railway station will be reduced from almost two hours to up to 78 minutes. New stations and stops would be added to Hista in Espoo, Veikkola in Kirkkonummi, Nummela in Vihti and Lohja. The new line will also provide better opportunities to develop commuter traffic in Southwest Finland.
The parties involved in the project company are the Finnish Government, the cities of Turku, Espoo, Helsinki, Salo, Lohja and Vihti, and the municipality of Kirkkonummi.
Based on the connection’s status as part of the European core network (TEN-T), significant funding has been received from the EU for the planning of the One Hour Train.
The planning costs of the One-hour Turku Rail Link are estimated to be approximately EUR 75 million in total. Of this amount, the new direct Espoo–Salo railway line accounts for approximately EUR 60 million, and the Salo–Turku double-track railway line accounts for approximately EUR 15 million.
The preliminary estimate of total construction costs is approximately EUR 3.4–4 billion.
The planning of the One-hour Turku Rail Link will be completed by the end of 2023. If the project goes according to plan, the construction will be fully completed and the railway lines ready for traffic at the end of 2031.
The performance of the transport system is directly linked to Finland’s competitiveness and success. Development also requires substantial investments in projects. Building a new railway link alone within the government’s budgetary framework is not easy. New solutions and funding options are needed.
The advantages of a project company include the ability to combine the resources of central and local governments. The project company model is a new, collaborative way of planning, implementing and funding large railway investments for the benefit of society. The project company model is one way of completing important projects in a timely manner.
The project company will handle the planning and funding of the Turku One Hour Train project until the construction is ready to begin.
The goal is to have the track design plans for the rail connection ready by the end of 2023.
In projects as large as this, the construction phases are long and require careful planning. The planning of railway projects is a step-by-step, evolving process that has many phases:
- A prefeasibility study is carried out to assess, among other things, the timing of the railway project with respect to the regional land use plan and master plan. At this stage, there may be several options for the placement of the railway lines, and further information will be obtained on them through the prefeasibility study.
- General planning refers to determining the approximate location and space requirements of the railway and how it relates to land use in the surrounding areas.
- Track design is detailed planning with the purpose of implementing the railway project.
In addition, the projects must go through an environmental impact assessment (EIA), which is a statutory process of evaluating the railway project’s likely impacts on nature, the built environment and the health and well-being of human, as well as the use of natural resources.
Planning is an interactive process, and various parties are consulted during each phase.