UIC is very happy and proud to host the photo exhibition dedicated to the 40th anniversary of the beginning of construction of the Baikal-Amur Railway Mainline. Open to the public from 2 – 16 December 2014, the exhibition is truly pleasing to the eye and senses through its wonderful photographs depicting a line running in the extreme east part of Russia, winding through the Siberian Mountains and beautiful landscape of dense and seemingly endless forest. This exhibition underlines the human factor, by showing the joint work between international teams.
As Jean-Pierre Loubinoux, UIC Director General said, “the construction of the Baikal-Amur Mainline Railway began in 1974 and was fully completed in 1991. It was an ambitious engineering project that would establish a permanent rail link with the Russian Far East across Siberia. Running parallel to the Trans-Siberian railway, one of its objectives was to help divert heavy freight traffic from the other existing rail lines. Developed as an international project, people from four European countries worked hand in hand with Russia in the construction of the railway. It is an international project that symbolises what UIC is promoting and developing.”
Vladimir Yakunin described the importance of this project: “The dimension of the railway line is impressive even today: its total mileage is 4287 kilometres, more than a 1000 of which run through permafrost areas and regions with high seismic activity. The route crossed 11 large rivers and 7 mountain ridges, its constructors built hundreds of major and minor bridges, laid many tunnels. More than 60 towns and settlements, and more than 200 railway stations and railway junctions can consider the beginning of this “Construction Project of the Century” to be their birthday. Only through selfless and tenacious work a nearly impossible task – the building of such a mainline – became achievable.”
He added: “Today BAM helps to solve the most important transport problems of all Siberia and the Far East of Russia, and in the near future the steel mainline will have new strategic missions. A testimony to this is the decision of the President of the Russian Federation to modernise BAM, to increase its carrying capacity and to incorporate it into the unified transport corridor between East and West.