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Multimodal travel centre planned at HEL

Helsinki Airport’s future travel centre will be a “large entity” matching different modes of transport.

One of the most significant future investments to be made at Helsinki Airport during its ongoing expansion is a new main entrance, where a multimodal travel centre is being planned.

The aim of the centre will be to better connect the airport to other parts of Finland, nearby regions such as St Petersburg and the Baltics, as well as to the rest of the world – helping HEL to handle growing passenger volumes in the 2020s.

The Multimodal Travel Centre project is being subsidised by EU funding, amounting to €2.25 million for the planning phase and €7.38 million for implementation. It will be ready in 2021.

“The multimodal travel centre is a hub for different modes of transport. It is not a traditional travel centre, which can be found in many places in Finland, but a considerably larger entity that also connects air travel,” explains Henri Hansson, senior vice president for technical and environmental services at airport operator Finavia.

Road, rail, ferry
In addition to air transport, the travel centre will be used to arrange onward journeys to and from Helsinki Airport via taxi, car hire and local and long-haul buses and trains.

At the moment, the airport is connected to the Ring Rail Line and into the Helsinki area on local trains, through which there is a connection to the regional railway network. But the airport is preparing to also be directly connected to the regional railway.

There have been discussions about a ‘flight rail’, which will connect HEL to long-haul train traffic. It will link Helsinki and Finland’s regions to domestic and international transport.

Connecting Helsinki to Tallinn, the Baltics and on to Western Europe by rail is also being discussed.

In the design of the new travel centre, ferry services to and from the Baltic countries, St Petersburg and Scandinavia have also been taken into account, Finavia says.

“It is not just about getting to and from the airport, but also about linking Helsinki-Vantaa to different growth centres, thus promoting business mobility on the global market,” says Hansson.

Helsinki Airport handled more than 18 million passengers in 2017. Its aim is to raise capacity to 30 million passengers a year.

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