Riga-Valga train connection to be renewed in near future

  • 2008-01-09
  • From wire reports
TALLINN - Latvia's domestic passenger train operator is set to relaunch a train route to the Estonian border town of Valga after a nearly seven-year hiatus.
Pasazieru Vilciens had wanted to extend the existing Riga-Lugazi route to Valga, across the border from Latvia's Valka, by the end of 2007 but had to postpone the launch due to procedural issues, according to reports.

Eesti Raudtee (Estonian Railway) has agreed with the Latvian company's plan but first a number of procedures need to be carried out, Estonian Railway spokesman Urmas Glase said.
"For instance, it has to be agreed exactly where the trains will stop, how the use of the infrastructure will take place, and how Latvian passenger trains fit into the timetable," he explained.
Passenger trains stopped running between Estonia and Latvia in 2001. At the same time Estonia's Ministry of Communications and Transport terminated passenger train services between Valga, Tartu and Tallinn.
As a result, passengers from Riga have been unable to journey by rail to Tartu and Tallinn.
Attempts to restore the Riga-Valga passenger service since both countries acceded to the European Union in 2004 have failed.

Glase was reluctant to predict when the necessary procedures will be completed. As soon as the formalities are settled the Riga train will begin stopping in Valga, he added.