Helsinki is getting bigger and bigger. Right now the city goy about 610,000 inhabitants with about 1.4 million in the metropolitan area. The city is the capital of Finland and today it boasts a quite fast Metro system, a 79 km tram network that got 10 lines and many bus lines. So the city of Helsinki chose to replace the bus line 550 with a new type of light rail that will link Keilaniemi in the west to Itäkeskus in the east.
This upgrade costs over 386,000,000 Euro where The City of Helsinki will contribute with 286,000,000 Euro to the Jokeri Light Rail project. The city of Espoo is also covering 118,000,000 Euro. YIT Finland and NRC works with it.
After some research. I know that that Stockholm has a light rail system named Tvärbanan, Copenhagen and Helsinki are building Jokeri Light Rail. But Oslo and Reykjavik in the Nordics haven’t put any effort into building one yet. Oslo do have a tram network, but it hasn’t changed for many years. Reykjavik is even worse as they have no transit option for the country that Icelanders cares so much for. Everyone is driving cars or busses. It’s pretty insane I think.
New Light Rail line with 34 stations in Helsinki, Finland
The new light rail name is Jokeri light rail or Raide-Jokeri. It will serve the west, north and east side of Helsinki. It will be 25 km in length and use the same track gauge at 1,000 mm which the rest of the tram network in Helsinki uses. With a smaller gauge, the light rail wagons can have nicer speeds in curves.
Jokeri light rail will replace the trunk bus line 550 from 2024 when the start operation of the line will begin. The idea of having this light rail line in Helsinki began back in 1990. So as in Norway. Planing things takes time but at least now its finally taken plans into action. In 2003 the light rail route was started to be operated by bus line 550. Then there was ideas to build a metro line here which was a huge topic until 2009 when the decision for a light rail line was settled. But it was in June 2016 that the decision for taking action to build it to take effect.
So the construction of the line officially began on the 6th of June 2019 and will be done in 2024. I am really looking forward to this and makes a reason for me to see Helsinki at that time too. A town that I haven’t visited yet, but it is on my top list of capitals to visit in the world.
Jokeri light rail will connect Espoo and Helsinki
At the Keilaniemi station in the west. The route will start its journey from Espoo municipality to Helsinki. Together with the Metro, it will also connect with both Keilaniemi and the Aalto University. Then the light rail will meet the local train that also goes to the airport at Huopalahti and Oulunkylä stations before meeting the Metro again at Itäskesus on the east side of Helsinki.
New connections for 550 Jokeri Light Rail
This line will become a very nice line. I want to see it alive in 2024. It will connect several important stations that will make these areas of Helsinki grow. Without the need of having a car. This light rail line will be a much faster way to travel.
After 6 months or so all of the costs for the line will for sure be on the positive side. It took about 6 months for the light rail in Aarhus, Denmark to win over the costs. It takes time for people to get used to a new service, but once people understand its positive impact. It will skyrock in popularity.
Light Rail is one of the best transit options in the world. So, it is great that Helsinki has chosen to build a fully light rail line. It will not connect with the rest of the tram network in Helsinki for now. But our advice is that since this line will use a 1,000 mm gauge of the tram tracks which the rest of the tram network in Helsinki uses. Then some of the stations could be built so that it connects?
|Keilaniemi||M1 and M2|
|Aalto-yliopisto||M1 and M2|
|Leppävaara||Local train (no Airport train)|
|Huopalahti||Local train (Aviapolis-Airport)|
|Oulunkylä||Local train (Airport-Aviapolis)|
|Itäkeskus||M1 and M2|
We at Distrita will follow the development and give you even more information about this new light rail line when we get it.