14 Dec 2020
EUR 56.10 million
|Date of agreement:||18 Mar 2020|
|Customer:||City of Espoo|
|Amount in EUR:||EUR 65.6 million|
|NACE sector / loan type:||Transport via railways|
The loan has been provided to finance the construction of a fast tram line connection between Itäkeskus in Eastern Helsinki and Keilaniemi in South-East Espoo. The line will have a length of ca. 25 kilometres.
The new tram connection will replace bus line 550, which is currently the busiest and most congested bus line in the Helsinki metropolitan area. Approximately 40,000 people are travelling on the line today. This number is expected to grow by ca. 20,000 new passengers until 2030.
The Raide-Jokeri line will run on double track and will be operated by low-floor trams. The rolling stock will be acquired and operated by Helsinki City Transport HKL. Construction has started in June 2019, and the project is scheduled for completion in 2024.
The city of Espoo has a population of ca. 280,000. Approximately 1.5 million people live in the Helsinki Metropolitan area.
The new tram line is expected to significantly upgrade the capacity and reliability of the public transport systems in Espoo and Helsinki. The Raide-Jokeri connection runs through several suburban areas. The existing bus line 550 is heavily congested during peak hours, especially at stations connecting to other lines. By 2030, the number of commuters using the connection is expected to increase by 20,000 passengers. The investment aims to increase the efficiency of land use in the traffic corridors.
The new tram line will replace diesel buses with electrified light rail, and support commuters in switching from private cars to public transport due to the improved service quality. Based on the traffic forecast, the project is estimated to contribute to the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 4,000 tonnes annually by 2030 in the Helsinki metropolitan area.
Indicators for the expected impact of the investment:
Construction costs in EUR million
Increase in population living in the traffic corridor during 2019-2030
Increase in the number of daily trips taken between 2019-2030
Travel time between Otaniemi and Itäkeskus in minutes
Turnover of transtech during 2024-2027
Increase in daily trips by public transport by 2030
Reduction in annual CO2 emissions
The tram alignment runs in the vicinity of the Laajalahti, Vantaanjoki and Vanhankaupunginlahti Natura 2000 areas, where protection values include nature habitats, birds and thick shelled river mussels. Natura assessments were carried out and measures to mitigate and monitor impacts on protected species have been planned accordingly. In addition, there are streams and rivers inhabited by trout along the tramline corridor. The potential impact of construction works on trout spawning areas have been considered, mitigation measures were planned and water permits applied for, as necessary. The nature surveys also identified several habitats of flying squirrel in the project area. Efforts to mitigate the impact of the project on these have been taken, but there are two areas were the impact cannot be avoided. Therefore, an exemption to destroy and weaken the breeding and resting place of the species was granted at Kurkijoenpuisto area in Espoo, and a process to clarify the need for a similar exemption at Patterimäki area in Helsinki is ongoing.