Light rail sys to Pulkovo Airport to cost 16 bln rbl

Construction of a light rail system from the Moscow Railway Station in St. Petersburg to Pulkovo Airport is estimated to cost 16 billion rubles, Alexei Chichkanov, chairman of the city governmentŐs investments and strategic projects committee, told reporters Tuesday.

A tender for the construction of the rail track is currently being prepared and could be announced sometime in March-May, he said. Under the project, trains are to take about an hour to reach the airport from the railway station.

St. Petersburg Deputy Governor Yury Molchanov was quoted as saying earlier that the rail system should be built by the end of 2013, when a new terminal at the airport is to open. The project is to be implemented as a public-private partnership, Molchanov said, adding that FranceŐs Alstom and Russian railway equipment maker Transmashholding were showing interest in the project. Chichkanov also said that railroad monopoly Russian Railways and railway operator Aeroexpress planned to organize a rail service between St. PetersburgŐs Baltic Railway Station and Pulkovo Airport. Investments in the project are expected to amount to 13 billion rubles, he said, adding that Russian Railways was to invest 8 billion rubles, while the remaining 5 billion rubles was to come from Aeroexpress. The companies are likely to start implementing the project in 2012, Chichkanov said. Trains are expected to reach the airport from the railway station in 30 minutes, he also said. Construction of a new terminal at Pulkovo Airport is part of a project to upgrade the airport, which is expected to cost 1.2 billion euros, according to earlier reports. Northern Capital Gateway, a consortium led by state-controlled VTB Bank, which is in charge of the upgrade of project, said Tuesday it had chosen a consortium of ItalyŐs Astaldi and TurkeyŐs IC as a general contractor for the first part of the project. The construction companies set up the consortium on a parity basis. A contract with the consortium, which won a tender to be a general contractor, is expected to be signed in early March.

(29.3689 rubles - U.S. $1)
Prime-TASS, February 8, 2011