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Government derails plans for high speed Tampere-Helsinki train

The proposal had been part of a package of rail projects initiated by the previous government.

Aerial view of Tampere train station.
Aerial view of Tampere train station. Image: Marjut Suomi / Yle
Yle News

Plans for a high-speed, one-hour rail link between Helsinki and Tampere have been shelved, the Ministry of Transport and Communications announced on Monday.

In a press release, the ministry noted that the proposed connection between Helsinki and Tampere via Helsinki Airport was mentioned in the government programme.

"Preparations for a rail connection between Helsinki and Tampere via Helsinki Airport (the ‘Suomirata’) will be suspended. The remaining funds will be returned to the owners," the programme stated.

Suomirata is a project company established in December 2020 by the previous government of Sanna Marin, and the Finnish state has a 51 percent stake in the firm. Other shareholders include Helsinki, Tampere as well as several other cities and municipalities.

Airport line moves ahead

While the Tampere-Helsinki plans were suspended, the ministry confirmed on Monday that a planned airport rail line project will push ahead.

There already is a local rail line connecting downtown Helsinki to the airport, but the new track will connect it to Finland's long-distance railway network.

This plan will see a track branch off from the main line just north of Pasila station, pass through Helsinki Airport, and rejoin the main line just after Kerava station.

Suomirata will continue to design and plan the line, but the company's name will now change to Lentorata, the ministry added.

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