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Opening ceremony of the Vinjan Viaduct

The ceremony marking the completion of the main construction works on the Vinjan Viaduct was marked with speeches by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Slovenia, Robert Golob, Alenka Bratušek, Slovenian Minister of Infrastructure, Jerneja Jug Jerše, Head of the Representation of the European Commission in Slovenia, and Matej Oset, Director General of 2TDK. The viaduct is the longest on the second track at 620 metres and connects the Mlinarji tunnel (T7) and the last tunnel on the line, the Škofije tunnel (T8). The second track runs over three viaducts, the Glinščica viaduct was built in 2022 and the Gabrovica viaduct at the end of last year. The Vinjan viaduct bridges the Vinjan valley and construction started in spring 2022.

The Vinjan railway viaduct is located in a part of the valley where a fossil landslide has been identified by geological and geomechanical surveys. Although additional surveys and measurements have shown that the landslide is currently dormant, the designer has proposed a change in the construction technology of the viaduct to ensure long-term stability and safety. Originally, an incremental launch technology was envisaged, which was replaced by a freely cantilevered construction technology.

The design of the viaduct has also changed. The number of columns has been reduced so that there is now only one column in the landslide area, compared to the three columns planned. The height of the columns is up to 60 metres, with spans of 100 metres. The ratio of spans to column heights is close to a golden ratio, so that the Vinjan Viaduct looks calm and harmonious in space.

The Vinjan Viaduct is now complete, followed by the construction of the noise and wind barriers.

In his speech at the ceremony, Prime Minister Robert Golob emphasised that the Government supports the accelerated development of the railway infrastructure, which will enable the growth of the Port of Koper and thus the coastal and Slovenian economy. “The second railway line will be of great importance for the transport and logistics sectors, which are high value-added industries in particular. The Vinjan Viaduct is a sign that Slovenians know how and can do it. With knowledge and determination, we will give Slovenia the place in the world it deserves.” He added that, as the viaduct was built by the Slovenian construction company Kolektor, he believes that the second rail project will continue to be a success story for Slovenian construction.

Minister of Infrastructure Alenka Bratušek said that the Vinjan viaduct is an outstanding engineering achievement, where the construction contractors have upgraded their skills and will be able to build similar projects abroad. She also stressed that “the ministry is working fast on the spatial basis for the parallel track, as the goal is a double-track line and the parallel track will finally eliminate the problems of the population along the existing line.”

2TDK Managing Director Matej Oset, in his address, pointed out that, as Managing Director of 2TDK, he is extremely pleased that a number of new milestones have been reached recently and that construction on the whole project is progressing well. “On the second track project, we have brought together our knowledge, experience and innovation to deliver this strategic project, which will undoubtedly have an impact on the sustainable future of transport and the economy in the region. With a number of new railway lines being built in the vicinity of Slovenia, the timely construction of the second track is even more important.”

Jerneja Jug Jerše, Head of the Representation of the European Commission in Slovenia, pointed out that the European Commission encourages and supports projects that strengthen rail transport in Europe, as it is a safe and sustainable mode of transport. “Rail transport does not contribute even one per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions from transport in the European Union, while road transport contributes over 70%, which is why the second railway track is one of the most important infrastructure investments in Europe.”

28.2.2024

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