Upgrading the E20 Tallinn-Narva road

Expanding a section of the E20 Tallinn-Narva road, which runs up to the Estonian-Russian border, will help remove bottlenecks and improve access to the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) harbour at Muuga, one of the largest and busiest harbours on the Baltic coast.

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The principal aim of the project is to reduce travel time, vehicle operating costs and to improve overall road traffic safety along an 8.4 km section of the E20 Tallinn-Narva road. The road is part of the TEN-T network in Estonia and is an important link between pan-European Transport Corridors I and IX.

Major construction

The project includes widening the road section from four to six lanes on 5.3 km and reconstruction of a four-lane section along 3.1 km. Existing pavements and embankments will be demolished and replaced with new asphalt concrete pavements and sub layers. Fifteen existing level junctions and entrances, as well as four U-turns will be closed. There will be three major interchanges constructed, and as a result of removing small junctions and entrances, additional service roads will be constructed.

Seven existing bus stops will be removed from the main road. Light traffic roads and safe crossing points for pedestrians and cyclists will be constructed over 10 kilometres, with a width of between 3-4 metres. In addition, road lighting and safety barriers will be installed and the overall management of the traffic system improved, leading to the removal of the bottleneck on the E20.

Dynamic transport hub

This road supports traffic flow from the Estonian capital Tallinn, to the Russian border at Narva and the Baltic ports. This section of road sees traffic from the eastern direction (St. Petersburg) cross with the Tallinn ring road and traffic from the TEN-T harbour at Muuga, one of the largest and busiest harbours on the Baltic coast.

The current road was noted for its low capacity, and the road surface and road structures were in a bad condition. Between 2004 and 2008 there were 118 recorded traffic accidents on this section of road (four people were killed and 45 injured).

According to a 2006 study, the Tallinn-Narva section of the E20 had the highest annual daily traffic of all road sections in Estonia, as well as above average growth rates. In 2008, traffic on this section ranged from 17 500 to 32 000 vehicles per day, depending on the exact counting point. It is estimated that these figures will increase to 84 496 vehicles per day by year 2025, which is linked to the ongoing expansion of Muuga harbour, growing numbers of vehicles and general population trends in the municipalities surrounding Tallinn.

There are a number of expected benefits linked to the implementation of this project, not least the removal of a bottleneck from the E20 and improving access to Muuga harbour. The project will also reduce travel time and road users' costs, as well as significantly increasing safety along this section of the road, especially for pedestrians and cyclists.


Draft date

28/09/2011