Photo: Lithuanian Railways

Photo: Lithuanian Railways

14 Dec 2009

Improving rail traffic in Lithuania

NIB has provided a EUR 15 million loan to the Lithuanian state rail infrastructure operator AB Lietuvos gelezinkeliai (Lithuanian railways). The loan is earmarked to co-finance the company's investment programme for 2009-2011.

"With the loan received from NIB, our company is set to upgrade the core railway infrastructure. The investment programme is aimed at improving rail traffic safety and bringing the rail transport infrastructure into line with EU standards," says Stasys Dailydka, Director General of AB Lietuvos gelezinkeliai.

The scope of the NIB-financed projects will include branches of Trans-European Rail Corridor IX, connecting Ukraine and Belarus to the Lithuanian sea port of Klaipeda as well as the ports of Russia's Kaliningrad Oblast. The company will also continue developing the Lithuanian part of Trans-European Rail Corridor I, connecting the Baltic countries via Warsaw to the rest of the EU. NIB's financing will also be used for the acquisition of four heavy-weight track motor cars.

"By increasing the speed and throughput, the Lithuanian railways will become more environment-friendly," says Mr Dailydka.

In order to speed up the trains, the Lithuanian rail operator is installing new signalling, telecommunication, power supply, and hot axle-box detection systems. This will help reduce the risks of accidents and damage caused to the environment.

The main environmental issues are rather typical for infrastructure projects: land issues, the mitigation of transport impacts on sensitive areas, and leakage from the rolling stock. Lietuvos gelezinkeliai is dealing with them directly, by implementing railway drainage and surface water treatment systems, and by outsourcing contaminated soil and hazardous waste treatment to specialised companies.

AB Lietuvos gelezinkeliai maintains all of Lithuania's 1,766 kilometres of railways and 109 railway stations.



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