Having successfully implemented the first stage of the Rail Baltica project, Lithuania has been the first of the Baltic States to embark on the second stage of the project – the construction of a European standard gauge railway from Kaunas to the Lithuania-Latvia border, the press center of Lithuania’s Ministry of Transport and Communications reports.
“Upon receiving the approval of the board of JSC Lithuanian Railways, contract works have been started on the section Jiesia-Rokai of Rail Baltica. A call for bids to perform the construction of a European standard gauge railway of the section Rokai-Palemonas-Kaunas is scheduled for November. The documents of public procurement have been drafted and are being coordinated with responsible institutions”, Vice-Minister of Transport and Communications Saulius Girdauskas said.
A total of EUR 88.27 million is planned to be allocated for the project’s contract works and technical maintenance. The activities related to the Rail Baltica project will be partially financed (85%) with the funds of the Connecting Europe Facility for the transport sector. The remaining funds (15%) will be allocated by JSC Lithuanian Railways.
Initially, reconstruction works in the section Kaunas-Palemonas of the current railway Rokai-Palemonas-Kaunas will be performed. Then the railway Palemonas-Rokai will be reconstructed. The works will be carried out in several stages – in the section Palemonas station – Kaunas hydroelectric power plant (HE) in the boundaries of Kaunas HE and in the section Kaunas HE-Rokai.
2015 marked the completion of the construction of a 1435 mm gauge railway between the Poland-Lithuania border and Kaunas Central Station and the start of preparatory works for the implementation of the second stage of Rail Baltica.
Work has started on developing a special plan for building a European gauge railway from Kaunas to the Lithuania-Latvia border and drafting a strategic environmental impact assessment of this railway strip. This work is expected to be finished by the end of the year. (Portnews/Business World Magazine)