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Cornerstone laid at Ülemiste Passenger Terminal

Marking the start of construction works, the cornerstone has been laid at the site of the new Ülemiste Passenger Terminal in Tallinn.

A multi-modal transport hub for the city’s commuters as well as international rail passengers and air travellers using the adjacent Tallinn Airport, the Ülemiste Passenger Terminal is designed as a connecting bridge linking together districts of Tallinn currently separated by the railway tracks that disect the city.

Opening in 2028, Tallinn’s Ülemiste terminal will be the northern terminus of the new 870-kilometre Rail Baltica electrified railway now under-construction. Providing passenger services at speeds up to 249km/h, Rail Baltica will connect Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania with the European high-speed rail network in Poland.

Zaha Hadid Architects developed the design with leading Estonian architecture and engineering firm Esplan. Circulation routes through the terminal have determined the station's spatial geometry to aid navigation and the seamless integration of the city's bus, tram, rail and cycle networks that intersect at the terminus.

Incorporating a modular structural system built in phases to enable ongoing operations on the rail lines throughout construction, the terminal has been designed and planned to BREEAM benchmarks and guidelines.

Estonia’s Climate Minister, Kristen Michal, said: "We have been dreaming of a fast connection to Europe. This is a landmark year in the construction of Rail Baltica – in addition to laying the cornerstone of the Ülemiste terminal, the construction of the main line has also begun. Building a high-quality connection will provide a much-needed new opportunity for the Estonia’s people and its economy."

Director-General of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Mobility, Magda Kopczynska, said: "Rail Baltica is a European, Baltic and Estonian project. The Baltic States must be connected to the European rail network, both in order to ensure the security of supply chains, comfortable travel, economic development and, last but not least, our common European security. The European Commission has been and will remain a strong supporter of Rail Baltica."

Chairman of the Rail Baltic Estonia management board, Anvar Salomets, said: "Until just a few years ago, we could not have believed that we could have celebrated the laying of the cornerstone for Ülemiste Terminal. The implementation of the Rail Baltica project in Estonia has been both effective and efficient, and in four years' time, we invite everyone to the opening of Rail Baltica Ülemiste terminal."

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Project Team

Competition Stage
Architect: Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA)
ZHA Board Directors: Patrik Schumacher, Gianluca Racana
ZHA Project Directors: Ludovico Lombardi, Michele Salvi
ZHA Design Team: Luciano Letteriello, Kate Revyakina, Serra Pakalin, Yuzhi Xu, Anthony Awanis, Hendrik Rupp, Mauro Sabiu

Design  Stages
 Zaha Hadid Architects
ZHA Board Directors: Patrik Schumacher, Gianluca Racana
ZHA Project Directors: Ludovico Lombardi, Michele Salvi
ZHA Project Leads: Luciano Letteriello, Marco Guardincerri
ZHA Design team: Zrinka Radic, Amittai Antoine, Richard Maekallas, Davide del Giudice, Alexsandra Fisher, Jose Navarrete Deza, Mauro Sabiu, Adam Twigger

Local Architect: Esplan OU
Engineering: Esplan OU