TALLINN – Estonian privately-owned train operator Edelaraudtee has turned to the government with a request to exclude the railway tracks between Parnu and Raekula stations from the public railway as the railway section has not been in use since the year before last and Rail Baltic will be built on the same route, public broadcaster ERR reports.
Rail Baltic project coordinator Kristjan Kaunissaare said that the design of the Parnu Rail Baltic terminal takes into account the assumption that there is no longer a 1,520-millimeter railway operating there.
However, the railway between Lelle and Parnu will be reconstructed for the transport of materials for Rail Baltic.
The track area between Parnu-Raekula stations largely overlaps with the planning area of Rail Baltic, therefore the demolition of the track is an important precondition for Rail Baltic's construction to take place according to plan.
This section of the railway belongs to Edelaraudtee on the basis of the right of superficies and what the company will do with the rails, sleepers and points to be dismantled upon approval of the application is up to them.
"As passenger transport on the Lelle-Parnu railway route was terminated due to the poor condition of the railway, it is probably not possible to, for example, relocate the frames to be dismantled," Kaunissaare said.
According to the Railway Act, the government excludes railway infrastructure from public railways at the request of a railway undertaking. According to Kaunissaare, the government has the right to reject the application of a railway undertaking for the exclusion of the railway infrastructure managed by it from public railways if the infrastructure needs to be used for public passenger transport in the general interest.
The state has not ordered a public passenger transport service on the Lelle-Parnu railway section since December 2018.