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Infrastructure - TEN-T - Connecting Europe

North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor


Helsinki – Tallinn – Riga

Ventspils – Riga

Riga – Kaunas

Klaipeda – Kaunas – Vilnius

Kaunas – Warszawa

BY border – Warszawa – Poznań – Frankfurt/Oder – Berlin – Hamburg

Berlin – Magdeburg – Braunschweig – Hannover

Hannover – Bremen – Bremerhaven/Wilhelmshaven

Hannover – Osnabrück – Hengelo – Almelo – Deventer – Utrecht

Utrecht – Amsterdam

Utrecht – Rotterdam – Antwerpen

Hannover – Köln – Antwerpen

The North Sea-Baltic Corridor connects the ports of the Eastern shore of the Baltic Sea with the ports of the North Sea.

The corridor will connect Finland with Estonia by ferry, provide modern road and rail transport links between the three Baltic States on the one hand and Poland, Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium on the other.

Between the Odra River and German, Dutch and Flemish ports, it also includes inland waterways, such as the "Mittelland-Kanal".

The most important project is "Rail Baltic", a European standard gauge railway between Tallinn, Riga, Kaunas and North-Eastern Poland.

Map: North Sea-Baltic Corridor

The overall TEN-T corridor map


This 3200 km long corridor will connect the ports of the Eastern shore of the Baltic Sea with the ports of the North Sea. It starts at the modern harbours on the Gulf of Finland of Helsinki (Vuosaari) and Tallinn (Muuga) passing south through the three Baltic States and North Eastern Poland until Warsaw.  From there it follows the traditional East-West corridor to Lodz, Poznan and Berlin continuing to the ports on the North Sea coast. The corridor has branches to Ventspils in Latvia and to Klaipeda and Vilnius in Lithuania.

The corridor will provide modern transport links between Finland and the three Baltic States on the one hand and Poland, Germany and the Netherlands and Belgium on the other.  It encompasses the present Priority Project 27 and Rail Freight Corridor 8 (Rotterdam - Kaunas).

Main missing links

The main missing links of the North –Sea –Baltic Corridor are

  • A Rail Baltic 1435 mm gauge direct line from Tallinn to the Lithuanian/Polish border,
  • Lithuanian/Polish border to Bialystok upgrade,
  • Warsaw – Bialystok upgrade,
  • the cross-border operational systems, such as ERTMS (European Rail Traffic Management System) for rail and ITS (Intelligent Transport Systems) for road.


Traffic management systems must be developed along the corridor and multimodal connections with the ports should further be developed.

Success stories

During the last five years there have been improvement works on the outskirts of Warsaw and major track upgrading on the existing 1520 mm alignment in Estonia.  In Latvia, construction is ongoing on upgrading the 1520 mm line (Rail Baltica), both south and north of Riga.  In Lithuania, following the economic crisis and the lack of funds available the authorities decided to install a dual gauge 1435/1520mm track between the Polish border and Kaunas rather than construct a new 1435 mm direct line.  This dual gauge is complete from the Polish border to Sestokai and works have started on the remaining sections to Kaunas which need to be completed by 2015.

In Poland, work should start on a new direct 1435 mm line from Elk to the LT border and widening and modernising the line from Bialystok to Elk.  The Polish authorities indicate that the new lines will be ready by 2023 the estimated date of the finishing of the Rail Baltic construction.

CEF: Pre-identified projects

Helsinki - Tallinn

Ports, MoS

port interconnections, (further) development of multimodal platforms and their interconnections, icebreaking capacity, MoS

Tallinn - Riga - Kaunas - Warszawa


(detailed) studies for new UIC gauge fully interoperable line; works for new line to start before 2020; upgrading and new line on PL territory; rail – airports/ports interconnections, rail-road terminals, MoS

Ventspils – Riga


Upgrading, port interconnections, MoS

Klaipeda – Kaunas


Upgrading, port interconnections, MoS

Kaunas – Vilnius


Upgrading, airports interconnections, rail-road terminals

Via Baltica Corridor


works for cross-border sections (EE, LV, LT, PL)

BY border - Warszawa - Poznań - DE border


works onexisting line, studies for high speed rail

PL Border - Berlin - Hannover - Amsterdam/Rotterdam


studies and upgrading of several sections (Amsterdam – Utrecht – Arnhem; Hannover – Berlin)

Wilhelmshaven - Bremerhaven - Bremen


Studies and works

Berlin - Magdeburg – Hannover, Mittellandkanal, West-German Canals, Rhine, Waal, Noordzeekanaal, IJssel, Twentekanaal


studies, works for better navigability and upgrading waterways and locks

Amsterdam locks & Amsterdam - Rijnkanaal


locks studies ongoing; port: interconnections (studies and works, including Beatrix lock upgrade)

Forum Meetings 2014

  • 4th Forum Meeting of the North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor, Brussels, 19th November 2014


  • 3rd Forum Meeting of the North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor, Brussels, 1st October 2014


  • 2nd Forum Meeting of the North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor, Brussels, 18th June 2014


  • 1st Forum Meeting of the North Sea-Baltic Core Network Corridor, Brussels, 2nd April 2014