Tallinn–Tapa railway at Ülemiste station
|Locale||Estonia (Harju County, Lääne-Viru County)|
Tapa train station
Tapa train station
Stadler FLIRT (from 2012)
|Track length||77.8 km (48.3 mi)|
|Number of tracks||Double track|
|Track gauge||1,520 mm (4 ft 11 27⁄32 in) Russian gauge|
|Electrification||3 kV DC OHLE
(Tallinn to Aegviidu)
|Operating speed||120 km/h (75 mph)|
The line starts in Tallinn at the Baltic Station, runs through Northern Estonia in eastern direction and ends in Tapa, where it connects with railways to Narva and Tartu. It has 17 stations, including its two termini. The line is equipped for speeds up to 120 km/h on its entire length. Ülemiste train station and Baltic Station are included into planned Rail Baltica high-speed standard gauge railway. Passenger train operators include Elron and GoRail. Lux Express Grupp announced its plans to operate the line between Tallinn and St. Petersburg with two Stadler trains. The line has a railway connection, which serves Muuga Harbour, the largest cargo port in Estonia. Large marshalling yards are located at Baltic Station, Ülemiste train station and Tapa train station.
The railway forms together with the Tapa–Narva railway the Tallinn–Narva railway. Its length is 209.6 km (130.2 mi). This line was completed in 1870 and was originally a part of the railway line, which connected St. Peterburg and Paldiski through Tallinn and Narva as a part of the railway network of the Russian Empire.
The second stage of Rail Baltica development includes the modernisation of Tallinn–Tapa railway as a part of Tallinn–Riga railway, so trains could run at 160 km/h. A new huge train station is to be built at Ülemiste in 2019, making it the largest station on the line and starting serving the whole region through Rail Baltica HSL in period 2020–2025.
The railway is maintained from the Baltic Station in Tallinn and Tapa train station. The railway infrastructure operator is EVR Infra – a subsidiary of the national railway company Eesti Raudtee. Modernisation of interlocking of the stations will be made in 2014 and implementation of the ETCS second level is dependant from the phase of development of the technology and comes as the third stage of ERMTS implementation plan for Estonian conventional rail network in period 2019–2025.
All stations are being rebuilt according to European Council decision 2002/735/EC and Estonian standard EVS 867:2003 from a platform height of 1,100 mm to the EU standard platform height of 550 mm.
From Baltic Station, trains travel around the centre of Tallinn through Kitseküla train station heading eastwards towards Ülemiste train station. After Vesse station they leave borders of Tallinn and continue in a south-eastern direction through Harju County and Lääne-Viru County till Jäneda station, crossing several rivers on their way. After Jäneda the railway runs mainly in eastward direction till the end point in Tapa, where it splits to railways to Tartu and Narva.
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