November marks two years since the launch of Rail Baltica’s Riga Central Hub construction, which was started in 2020. Until now, 68% of the piles of the southern side of the track are built, 45,000 m3 of railway embankment excavated and a 230 meters long railway embankment retaining wall is built, as well as 43 km of new telecommunications and power cable networks, and more than 100 km of railway signaling cable network are installed.
“The construction of Rail Baltica ‘s Riga Central Hub is the largest and most extensive infrastructure construction project in Riga and will significantly impact the visual image, mobility, and further development opportunities of Riga City. In accordance with the scope of the construction, record number of interested parties are already involved in the development and coordination of this project,” emphasizes Kaspars Vingris, Chairman of the Board at Eiropas Dzelzceļa līnijas.
For works to proceed successfully and respecting different needs of numerous groups of society and NGOs, the project implementers have been cooperating with over 100 industry, infrastructure, and NGO partners. “Riga Central Hub is emerging as one of the most modern traffic hubs in Europe – important both for Rail Baltica’s mainline, but also providing an opportunity to improve Latvia’s public transport system,” said Kaspars Vingris.
In two years, Rail Baltica construction site in Riga has significantly expanded and currently covers the entire section on the southern side of the railway embankment from Lāčplēša Street to Riga International Bus Station and Maskava Street. Large-scale construction works of new railway overpasses, reconstruction, and arrangement of the related infrastructure of roads and engineering networks, dismantling of buildings, as well as the construction of the southern part of the building of the Riga Central Railway Station are carried out.
At the same time, intensive construction is underway in the areas of Lāčplēša Street overpass, Dzirnavu Street overpass area, southern side of Riga Central Station, Gogoļa Street overpass area, Prāgas Street overpass area, territory of the former commercial center and parking complex “Titāniks”, as well as the territory of the International Bus Station. Construction works of the underground infrastructure is close to be completed, and the most active part of the construction works are now taking place above the ground being visible to every resident and guest of Riga.
During next six months, Rail Baltica construction will bring even greater changes to the features of Riga, namely, because new railway overpasses will be built over Lāčplēša, Dzirnavu and Gogoļa streets, as well as in the territory of the International Bus station. Additionally, construction of the new Rail Baltica bridge over the Riga Canal will be started by the construction consortium “BERERIX”, while construction of arch foundations, elevator shafts and stair walls for the Station’s building will be completed, and beam assembly work will begin.
Most significant works completed so far:
- Construction of underground communications and infrastructure of the Riga Central Hub
- Engineered networks in the Rail Baltica overpass on Lāčplēša Street and reconstruction of the street started
- Soviet bunker dismantled
- Excavation of the railway embankment (at least 45,000 m3 in volume)
- Construction of transformer substation
- Construction of more than 4000 m2 of grooved wall (e.g., >5300 m of grooved piles), incl. anchoring of the constructed grooved walls
- 43 km of new telecommunications and power cable networks installed
- More than 100 km of railway signaling cables built
- Relocation of an oak tree near International Bus station
- Demolition of the former commercial center and parking complex “Titāniks”
- Demolition of station tunnels and reconstruction of existing engineering networks
- Partial demolition of overpasses on Dzirnavu, Prāgas and Gogoļa streets
- Construction of Lāčplēša street overpass and the retaining walls of the railway embankment (more than 230 meters already built), incl. works of piles and foundations grid windows
- Construction of drilled piles and foundation lattice fences in the central station, bus station and canal
- A total of around 1700 piles completed (out of around 2500 in total) in the southern zone.
The implementation of the Rail Baltica project is financed by the national states — Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania — and co-funding from the European Union up to 85% of the total eligible costs, in particular in the framework of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) funding instrument.