EIB helps fund Helsinki Westmetro extension

The EIB have agreed to lend €450m to Länsimetro for the Westmetro Extension Project in Helsinki.

The 13.5km line will be an extension of the Helsinki Metro system from central Helsinki to the neighbouring city of Espoo.

Final approval for the route was granted on 4 April 2007 and the extension is currently expected to open for service at the end of 2015.

The Helsinki Metro currently has a total length of 21.1km and the new Western Extension will add another 13.5km to the line.

The Westmetro project comprises of a double-track, fully automated line with 7 new stations and will link to the existing network in Central and Eastern Helsinki.

More than 100,000 passengers per day are expected to use the new line where the automated system will enable traffic at 2.5 minute intervals at peak times, with an option to shorten this to 90 seconds at a later stage.

Westmetro is to replace existing bus services and will encourage commuters to switch from road traffic, bringing significant environmental benefits when completed at the end of 2015.

“The European Investment Bank is pleased to support this significant project. Westmetro will contribute to the further integration and growth of one of Northern Europe’s most dynamic regions,” said EIB Vice-President Eva Srejber.

In addition to the EIB loan, the project is also supported by the Nordic Investment Bank, the Finnish government and the two municipalities.

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