The project entitled ‘The modernisation of the trans-European transportation network’ (TEN-T), Inland Waterway E41

Project No: 06.2.1-TID-V-510-01-0001                     

Project funding:

The project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund under investments Measure 06.2.1-TID-V-510: ‘“Ensuring shipping conditions for waterborne transportation”, part of Priority Axis 6 (“Developing sustainable transportation and key network infrastructure”), which itself is part of the “Operational programme for European Union Funds”’ investments in 2014-2020.

Funding amount : 23,261,121.00 EUR

Project implementation period: 01/09/2020- 31/07/2023

Project description:

Focussing on the navigation channel of the River Nemunas, along which the trans-European transportation network (TEN-T), Inland Waterway E41, runs from Kaunas to the mouth of the River Atmata, and which is covered every year with deposits. Formation in the shallows is accelerated by the fact that the hydraulic engineering structures – spur dikes (ie. groynes) – which have been constructed along the River Nemunas do not properly perform their due function thanks to their poor technical condition. In order to reduce the formation of deposits along the riverbed, it is necessary to carry out refurbishment work to the existing spur dikes and, if necessary, install new ones.
The following problem which is required to be resolved through the implementation of this project is the fact that the internationally-significant inland waterway, E41, does not meet the conditions which are suitable for safe navigation along its length. Waterway E41 does not meet the needs or requirements of inland waterway users.

Project purpose: to improve navigation conditions along inland waters through the modernisation of the trans-European transportation network (TEN-T), Inland Waterway E41.

The project will be implemented along the stretch of the River Nemumas between the 225.6km distance point near Kaunas to the 126km point, and from the 106km point to the zero point at the mouth of the River Atmata. Upon completion of the modernisation work along the waterway, refurbished or new spur dikes will form a straighter and narrower waterway, which will be naturally deepened by the narrowed river flow, and part of the deposited soil will be settled between the spur dikes. The new navigation channel which is formed from the spur dikes will allow the organisation to maintain the waterway’s dimensions during the annual waterway maintenance work. As an  example of this, any soil which is deposited along the navigation channel will be removed using dredgers which have been intended for waterway cleaning work.

Project results:

The modernisation of the trans-European transport network (TEN-T), Inland Waterway E41, will help to ensure the guaranteed dimensions of the waterway and will reduce erosion of the banks and the riverbed. The inland waterway will be improved during the implementation of the project work, ie. the work will provide for increased shipping capacity and (or) improved inland waterway traffic safety. The project will also make a direct contribution towards improving the safety of waterborne transportation. Maintaining the guaranteed waterway dimensions will help to ensure the safety of water transportation users, whether these are passenger vessels, recreational vessels, or freight vessels. Along the riverbed, where the navigation channel will be formed following the implementation of the project, deposited soil will not form shallows. Instead it will be directed towards the river bank, and in individual stretches it will be regulated by the installation of spur dikes. Where deposited shallows will be formed due to the hydrodynamic properties of the river, they will be removed by spur dikes or by using dredgers. In this way, vessels will not be able to run aground and will not face the potential threat posed by other underwater obstacles, while the condition of the waterway itself will make it possible to ensure the safety of vessels when navigating along the provided navigation signage.

The improvement of the trans-European transportation network (TEN-T), Inland Waterway E41, will be carried out along the stretch of the River Nemunas from the 225.6km point to the 126km point, and from the 106km point to the zero point at the mouth of the river (covering a total distance of 205.60km). The total length of the improved or newly created inland waterway will be at least 20km., but the aim is to improve (modernise) in general the maximum stretch of the waterway (bringing it up to a total distance of 205.60km), within the budget for project activities. In order to achieve these goals a total of seven hundred new spur dikes will be designed, and refurbished and/or built, which will ensure the desired guaranteed dimensions of Waterway E41, and the achievement of the planned project specific indicators (the number of spur dikes may be lower than planned if the foreseen project specific indicators are achieved).

Developing a common waterway between neighboring countries for the purposes of sustainable tourism and cooperation

On 1 November 2020, the state-owned Nemunas Euroregion Marijampole bureau, along with the Polish Euroregion Nemunas society, and the State-Owned Enterprise Lithuanian Inland Waterways Directorate launched project No LT-PL-5R-363 which is entitled: ‘Developing a common waterway which connects neighboring countries to be able to achieve sustainable tourism and cooperation’. The project is being partially funded by the ‘Lithuania-Poland cross border cooperation programme 2014-2020’ along with various partners.

Its main purpose is to create a tourist waterway (involving a navigable route) which serves to connect Lithuania and Poland via the Augustow Canal and the River Nemunas in order to promote safe tourism and disseminate widely sustainable visits to natural and cultural heritage sites, along with the provision of an increase in tourism flows, encouraging tourists to extend their stays in the border region, and to accelerate tourism recovery following the pandemic. This is expected to be achieved through the implementation of several key activities which are outlined below:

  1. Strengthen theoretical and practical management in the tourism sector, along with first aid skills. The project provides for the organization of the following tasks:
  • An introductory stakeholder meeting
  • Training for sixteen groups for anyone who wishes to start up or develop a water tourism business, involving a total of 240 participants (LT and PL)
  • Navigators (captains courses, involving a total of 40 participants (LT and PL))
  • A cognitive advertising trip from Augustów to Birštonas (along the canal and river), and a discussion about the route and trip, involving a total of 60 participants). During the trip films can be created about the waterway and about journeys along it, including ten individual films and one team film.
  1. Improve environmental safety levels, along with awareness regarding the waterway route and its levels of attractiveness, for which purpose the following tasks have been drawn up:
  • Conduct studies of the river floor along the Nemunas and prepare an electronic navigation map
  • Formulate an integrated website system with an electronic publication and a map, all of which should provide coverage for the entire waterway
  • Purchase two sets of equipment for monitoring the river bottom and any changes which it may experience.

Thanks to those people who have obtained a ‘Ship’s Captain’ certificate, businesses will be able to invest more safely in the purchase of new ships or boats, along with having the opportunity to employ navigators. It is expected that anyone who has obtained a ship’s captain certificate will also buy or rent boats themselves, thereby expanding their individual activities and sources of income.

The project aims to promote long-term cross-border cooperation between water tourism and related sectors. We hope that this project will also encourage the establishment of an international tourism cluster in this branch of business, as well as bilateral or trilateral long-term cooperation.

Business and government authorities in the Grodno region are also planning to join the development of this waterway.

Project management, information, publicity, and completion activities will also be implemented during the undertaking of the project.

Project implementation period is fifteen months. Total value of the project is190,354.95 EUR, of which support payments amount to a total of 161,801. 69 EUR.

More information about the project is available via the website: .

The Lithuanian Society of Ornithologists, together with its partners, the state-owned Enterprise Inland Waterways Directorate, the Nemunas Loops Regional Park Directorate, and UAB EKO STOMA, are implementing the project entitled Adjusting key stakeholder capacity for the improvement of the conservation status of Common Terns and Little Terns within Lithuania (No LIFE17 NAT/LT/000545).

The main objective behind the project, ‘Adjusting key stakeholder capacity for the improvement of the conservation status of Common Terns and Little Terns within Lithuania’, LIFE17 NAT/LT/000545, is to improve the conservation status for breeding populations of the Common Tern and Little Tern through the proper maintenance of their breeding habitats, and via the application of other conservation measures where these may be relevant to these species.

The project is funded by the European Union LIFE Programme, the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Lithuania, and project partners.

The duration of the project is from 1 July 2018 to 31 December 2022 .

More information about the project can be found here.