EUROPEAN Rail Lines, the body implementing the Rail Baltica project in Latvia, has launched a tender for an early contractor involvement contract for the construction of more than 200km of the standard-gauge line in the Baltic country.

The winning bidder will construct the line’s substructure and superstructure in Latvia, excluding the line in Riga, as well as be responsible for pre-construction works and the construction of embankments, railway bridges, roads, overpasses and track.

The contract does not include the electrification and signalling systems, with these to be procured by the Rail Baltica AS body to ensure conformity across the full Rail Baltica line.

The European Union’s Connecting Europe Facility is funding up to 85% of the contract with the Latvian government providing the remainder.

Bidders must have at least seven years’ experience in railway construction and an annual turnover appropriate to the scale of the project. European Rail Lines is encouraging Latvian firms to form partnerships with international companies to secure the appropriate experience to deliver the contract. The candidates must have quality management and environmental management systems and be experienced in using building information modelling (BIM).

The tender will be conducted over two stages, with the contract expected to be awarded at the end of 2022 ahead of the start of construction in the first half of 2023. Bids must be submitted by January 28 2022, with the successful candidates for the second phase expected to be announced in April 2022.

“Reconstruction of the Riga Central station section has been proceeding already for a year and the construction of the Rail Baltica infrastructure at the Riga International Airport section has also started,” says minister of transport, Mr Tālis Linkaits. “We are now taking the key steps necessary to prepare for the new railway line construction.

“The construction is intended to be implemented sequentially in accordance with the readiness of the sections. The most technically advanced section currently is the southern part to the Latvia - Lithuania border. We are doing our best to ensure that Latvia is connected to the European railway system in 2026 as planned and the people of Latvia can access the new railway line for convenient every day journeys.”  

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