Rail Baltica launches landmark study to supercharge its international stations

Rail Baltica joint venture RB Rail AS has signed a contract, amounted to 194 250 euro, with an international consortium led by a Ramboll and consisting of Gottlieb Paludan Architects, Soini&Horto Architects, Realidea Ltd., Ardenis Consult, featuring a team of renowned Northern European infrastructure development experts and architects to deliver recommendations to Rail Baltica, one of Europe’s flagship cross-border megaprojects, on how to promote long-term value creation in and in particular – around its seven international railway stations. Final report is expected at the end of 2021.

The study, supported by engagements with relevant key stakeholders, aims to generate a comprehensive set of recommendations on how to develop the seven Rail Baltica international stations – Tallinn Ülemiste, Pärnu, Riga Central, Riga International Airport, Panevėžys, Kaunas and Vilnius –transforming multimodal connectivity and serving as important development engines in their immediate urban environments and beyond.

The study will build on international best practice benchmarking of some of the most successful European and global multimodal transport hubs to understand the key factors which drive the creation of socio-economic value across all key dimensions: spatial, functional, commercial, operational and governance – both inside the stations and in their immediate urban environments, as well as the wider mobility-oriented development ecosystem. The study shall also consider and analyze any existing development plans/initiatives, both public and private, in and around the station areas.

To mobilize all relevant stakeholders, the study will engage and gather input from numerous parties, including municipalities, public transport operators, traffic authorities, non-governmental and community organizations, and private commercial and real estate developers.

As Rail Baltica Joint venture Head of Strategy and Development Kaspars Briškens summarizes: “Many famous station (re)development projects – from Utrecht to Vienna, from Paris-Austerlitz to Helsinki-Pasila – have demonstrated that modern multimodal mobility needs can be put at the heart of ambitious transformational developments that reshape urban landscapes, improve liveability and unlock new long-term development catalysts, not least around the principles of sustainability and circular economy. Rail Baltica has seven such opportunities. We owe it to the next generations to capitalize on them.”

“This study will identify opportunities, but the implementation will very much depend on the stakeholders and relevant parties and not only on Rail Baltica implementers. We encourage all relevant stakeholders to actively contribute to developing world-class recommendations and, subsequently, ensuring their coordinated implementation,” says Agnis Driksna, CEO of RB Rail AS, the Rail Baltica Joint Venture.