Angry Birds chief plans Tallinn-Helsinki tunnel

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Business development chief aims to open undersea tunnel in 2024

Peter Vesterbacka, former business development chief at the Espoo-based Angry Birds publisher Rovio, has pledged that the Tallinn-Helsinki undersea tunnel will be completed by Christmas 2024, the Baltic news agency LETA/BNS reports.

“It would be a nice Christmas present,” he said at a presentation in Helsinki this week, adding that the tunnel’s construction should take five years but possible delays must be taken into account.

He slapped a price-tag of €15 billion on the project, which he said would pay off in 37 years. The tunnel must be future-proof so it could be conveniently updated as technology develops, he said, adding: “We do not build tunnels every day.”

Tunnel alternatives
Vesterbacka is promoting a project that is completely separate from the national transport plans of Finland and Estonia.

It has been estimated that the preliminary analysis for a state-planned Tallinn-Helsinki tunnel partially financed by the European Union would be completed in February – with construction not starting until the 2030s.

In Vesterbacka’s project, 70% of the necessary funding would be raised by Chinese investors, the rest from local investors and pension funds.

The first of four stops would be Tallinn, the second 15 kilometres from Helsinki, the third near the Aalto University campus at Otaniemi, the fourth at Helsinki Airport. The Tallinn-Helsinki Airport trip would take 20 to 25 minutes. Trains would run at 350-400 kilometres per hour, Vesterbacka said.

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