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Old January 6th, 2016, 07:21 PM   #81
dimlys1994
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From Railway Gazette:

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http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/i...um-signed.html

Helsinki - Tallinn tunnel memorandum signed
06 Jan 2016





EUROPE: Studies of the viability of building a proposed railway tunnel under the Gulf of Finland between Tallinn and Helsinki are to be undertaken, following the signing of the Finnish-Estonian Transport Link memorandum of understanding by government and local authorities from Estonia and Finland on January 5.

The cost of the 92 km tunnel is estimated at between €9bn and €13bn. It would be significantly longer than the 57 km Gotthard Base Tunnel, 54 km Seikan Tunnel and 50 km Channel Tunnel, but shorter than the 120 km Päijänne Tunnel which supplies the Helsinki region with water. It would connect in Tallinn with the future Rail Baltica line to Poland.

FinEst is a joint project between Helsinki City Council, Helsinki-Uusimaa Regional Council, Finland’s Ministry of Transport & Communications, Estonia’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Harju County Council which encompasses Tallinn

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Old January 9th, 2016, 01:57 AM   #82
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So this tunnel is projected to cost roughly the same as the Brenner base tunnel?
Well, I would not call that cheap, but it is doable. Question is if it is reasonable.

Either way, I'd love to see such a tunnel. It would do nothing short of changing geography. Finland and Estonia would grow much closer together. And together with Rail Baltica the whole Balticum would move closer to Finland.
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Old January 9th, 2016, 07:29 PM   #83
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Is this tunnel more important to Finns or Estonians?
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Old January 10th, 2016, 11:23 AM   #84
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Is this tunnel more important to Finns or Estonians?
I think it would be good for both

I think Estonia's highly competitive legislative enviroment for businesses infused with the (relatively) larger size of Finland and better traffic connections we might be able to challenge Stockholm as the leading IT hub in northern europe.

Something like 90% (?) Finnair's asian traffic coming in to Helsinki Vantaa transfer elsewhere to Europe without ever leaving the airport. Being able to market Helsinki & Tallinn as a single destination (with direct access to airport) should bring a healthy chunk of money to both cities.

Then there's the potential upside from Rail Baltica as well, it would be good for Finland to have a rail connection to central Europe.
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Old January 10th, 2016, 02:25 PM   #85
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Both countries would benefit from this tunnel. Because of aging population and "in the middle of nowhere"-location both Helsinki & Tallinn would otherwise have rather grim future.

It's worth mentioning that travel time by train between Helsinki & Tallinn would be ~30 minutes. That's not fastest connection between two cities. Years ago there used to be regular helicopter line with travel time of ~18 minutes.
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Old January 10th, 2016, 02:30 PM   #86
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Yes but prices started at €119 one-way so it was really only feasible for the busiest and wealthiest businessmen. BTW Copterline stopped flying in June 2012 so it was only 3.5 years ago.
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Old January 10th, 2016, 09:27 PM   #87
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The tunnel would only make sense if there was a super straight combined freight/ high speed passenger line:
Tallinn
|
Riga
|
Kaunas (-Vilnius)
|
Warsaw.

This line would bring the Baltic states out of their relatively isolated position within Europe, and the tunnel would then be able to do the same for Finland.
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Old January 10th, 2016, 11:07 PM   #88
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That's what Rail Baltic is going to be: a 240 km/h combined passenger and freight railway line on a Tallinn-Riga-Kaunas route. Kaunas-PL border will hopefully come later. Lithuania decided to build a slow and unelectrified railway there first so they are not keen on replacing it right away. LT border-Warsaw is not officially part of Rail Baltic so upgrading that line depends solely on decisions made by the Polish government. The most realistic scenario in Poland is an upgrade to 160 km/h in the next 10-15 years.
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Old February 23rd, 2017, 07:27 PM   #89
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From Railway Gazette

http://www.railwaygazette.com/news/n...missioned.html

Helsinki – Tallinn tunnel feasibility studies commissioned
23 Feb 2017



EUROPE: Two consortia have been appointed to study the feasibility of the FinEst Link proposal to build a 92 km under-sea railway tunnel linking Finland and Estonia.

A consortium of Ramboll Finland, Sito, Strafica, Urban Research and Pöyry Finland will estimate passenger and freight volumes and undertake a cost-benefit study. This will inform a future decision about whether there is a case for a tunnel, or whether it would be better to focus on developing the current maritime services and improving transport connections to the ports of Helsinki and Tallinn

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Old February 28th, 2017, 07:23 PM   #90
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I'm all for exciting infrastructure and I do a lot of travelling in the Nordic area, so I'm predisposed to be for this project. But I can't see, even with all the benefits mentioned, how a 93 KM sea tunnel could be remotely profitable. This would be more much longer than the Chunnel and Gotthard Base Tunnel and serve a much less densely populated area of the world.
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Old March 1st, 2017, 05:45 PM   #91
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how about linking it to the proposed silk road? Is there sufficient freight volume between he nordic countries and the far east to make be feasible?
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Old March 1st, 2017, 07:05 PM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amexpat View Post
I'm all for exciting infrastructure and I do a lot of travelling in the Nordic area, so I'm predisposed to be for this project. But I can't see, even with all the benefits mentioned, how a 93 KM sea tunnel could be remotely profitable. This would be more much longer than the Chunnel and Gotthard Base Tunnel and serve a much less densely populated area of the world.
I believe the argument is that the geology makes it much easier and cheaper to build a tunnel here than at the Channel, for example.
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Old March 1st, 2017, 08:24 PM   #93
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Also, it reduces Finland's peripheral position, and gives the Baltic states even better access to a market with a lot of disposable income. Very much worth it. You build such a thing for 100-200 years.
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Old March 1st, 2017, 09:02 PM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amexpat View Post
I'm all for exciting infrastructure and I do a lot of travelling in the Nordic area, so I'm predisposed to be for this project. But I can't see, even with all the benefits mentioned, how a 93 KM sea tunnel could be remotely profitable. This would be more much longer than the Chunnel and Gotthard Base Tunnel and serve a much less densely populated area of the world.
Profitable in the sense of recovering the initial investment, operating costs, capital costs and a nice margin; probably not.

Profitable in the sense that the tunnel and railline could operate profitably once operational and us as citizens would be better off overall; likely enough that it's worth finding out more. That's why its good these studies are being done.

Also, I am not a traffic planner but commuter traffic volumes (Helsinki center to Tallinn center could be possible in 30min with a tunnel) are quite different from long distance travel IMHO; the Chunnel is not necessarily the right point of comparison. And then there's the freight aspect as well, a direct railline from Finland to central Europe could be quite valuable for Finland where as I'm not sure how big if any role it plays in the Chunnel?
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Old March 1st, 2017, 10:02 PM   #95
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Quote:
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...IMHO; the Chunnel is not necessarily the right point of comparison. And then there's the freight aspect as well, a direct railline from Finland to central Europe could be quite valuable for Finland where as I'm not sure how big if any role it plays in the Chunnel?
OK, perhaps the Øresund Bridge/tunnel would be a better comparison since it connects two metropolitan areas and is used for freight.

I'm not sure of the relative costs of each project, but I think it's fair to say that the Øresund bridge has much more of a financial benefit. It connects the Øresund region which at 3.9 million is much larger than than the Helsinki/Tallin region would be.

Both connections would be useful for freight, but the Øresund rail connection services Norway and Sweden with a combined population of ca. 15M compared to Finland's ca 5.5M. Also, freight would depend on a good connection through the Baltics and Poland to the rest of Europe.

As for the Silk Road, that needs to go through Russia which Finland already has a good rail connection with. And, if the Finns wanted to capitalize on a possible Silk Road, I think they'd be better off extending their railway in the North to a Norwegian harbor.

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Old March 1st, 2017, 10:32 PM   #96
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Such plans do exist, no decisions made though.
Image source: Wikipedia, with accompanying text in Finnish.
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Old March 2nd, 2017, 09:11 PM   #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amexpat View Post
OK, perhaps the Øresund Bridge/tunnel would be a better comparison since it connects two metropolitan areas and is used for freight.

I'm not sure of the relative costs of each project, but I think it's fair to say that the Øresund bridge has much more of a financial benefit. It connects the Øresund region which at 3.9 million is much larger than than the Helsinki/Tallin region would be.

Both connections would be useful for freight, but the Øresund rail connection services Norway and Sweden with a combined population of ca. 15M compared to Finland's ca 5.5M. Also, freight would depend on a good connection through the Baltics and Poland to the rest of Europe.

As for the Silk Road, that needs to go through Russia which Finland already has a good rail connection with. And, if the Finns wanted to capitalize on a possible Silk Road, I think they'd be better off extending their railway in the North to a Norwegian harbor.
Probably, but that doesn't mean that The Talsinki tunnel can't be beneficial as well.

Anyway, it's pretty pointless to speculate about this at this point. The benefits and costs will be studied by people who know what they're doing and then everyone can make up their own mind.
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Old March 4th, 2017, 12:13 PM   #98
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In case of the Talsinki Fix, it will be a subway like service, with a few intermediate stops. At both ends there are very considerable urban areas.

The second point I want to bring out is that due to very favorable geology there is no need for the shield, it makes the construction about ten folds cheaper.

Also as mentioned in earlier posts, I also see that the connection will give a huge boost for whole region, for both countries Finland and Estonia.
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Old March 4th, 2017, 09:37 PM   #99
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The second point I want to bring out is that due to very favorable geology there is no need for the shield, it makes the construction about ten folds cheaper.
How do you arrive at the construction would cost 1/10 of most of other tunnels?

I assume that they would need to use a TBM to do this, unless it will be an immersed tunnel. In either event, at 92 km it would far exceed what has previously been done. The longest tunnel presently is the Gotthard at 57km. The longest sea tunnel is the Seikan at at 54 K. The Fehrman rail and road tunnel at 18 km will be the world's longest immersed tunnel when completed.

Anyway you look at it, the greatest tunnel in human history would be made to connect Finland with Estonia, which on the face of it seems odd.
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Old March 4th, 2017, 10:36 PM   #100
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Quote:
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How do you arrive at the construction would cost 1/10 of most of other tunnels?

I assume that they would need to use a TBM to do this, unless it will be an immersed tunnel. In either event, at 92 km it would far exceed what has previously been done. The longest tunnel presently is the Gotthard at 57km. The longest sea tunnel is the Seikan at at 54 K. The Fehrman rail and road tunnel at 18 km will be the world's longest immersed tunnel when completed.

Anyway you look at it, the greatest tunnel in human history would be made to connect Finland with Estonia, which on the face of it seems odd.
Where do you get this 92 km number?
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