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Finland to Latvia rail tunnel planned

Construction of a tunnelled rail link between Finland and Latvia could be achieved within 20 to 30 years at an estimated cost of €9bn to €13bn (£9.6bn to £6.7bn), according to a new report.

Helsinki city council in Finland has said that the pre-feasibility study was aimed at defining whether the project to create a 90km tunnel from Helsinki to Tallinn was technically possible. Costs and benefits for the scheme were also assessed and it has been suggested that journey times between the two cities could be 30 minutes.

The report concludes that a rail tunnel is the best solution as it was deemed that a shorter travel time between the cities was deemed the most important factor in the profitability of the scheme.

Ground conditions were considered as part of the study and preferred routes have been selected. A number of tunnelling options were considered, using experience gained during the development of the Femernbelt submerged tunnel between Denmark and Germany and Oresund fixed link between Denmark and Sweden. The preferred approach is use of twin bored tunnels. Construction is estimated to take between eight and 10 years.

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