Volga-Baltic Waterway’s capacity to be increased by 2020.
Today, Vologda Oblast Governor Oleg Kuvshinnikov visited the oblast's biggest district in terms of total area – Vytegra District. The aim of the visit was to inspect the reconstruction of hydraulic works of Volga-Baltic Waterway that is a unique joint of the basins of the Baltic Sea, the Caspian, the Azov Sea and the Black Sea.
It links the Volga River and the St. Petersburg industrial area. It consists of the Moscow-Volga Canal, the Volga River, the Rybinsk Reservoir, the Mariinsk system (composed of the Sheksna River, the White Lake Canal, the Kovzha River, the Mariinsk Canal, and the Vytegra River), the Onega Canal, the Svir River, the Ladoga Canals, and the Neva River to St. Petersburg. The waterway was begun in 1709 to connect St. Petersburg with the interior. The major canals were built in the 1930s. The waterway was reconstructed and modernized in the early 1960s, the principal addition being a dam across the Sheksna River near Cherepovets, which deepened the waterway as far as the Kovzha River, facilitating the use of larger vessels.
The navigable system links the Volga River with the Baltic Sea and includes the Neva River, a canal along the southern shore of Lake Ladoga, and the Sheksna River past Cherepovets through the Rybinsk Reservoir. Its total length is some 4926 kilometres. Its overall length between Cherepovets and Lake Onega is 362 kilometres.
The hydraulic works located on the territory of the Vologda Oblast include 8 sluices, 3 hydroelectric power stations, 5 spillways, 3 water reservoirs, 4 ferry systems and 2 large industrial ports (Severstal and Ammophos) and other facilities.
Reconstruction of hydraulic works of the Volga-Baltic Waterway is carried out within the framework of the Federal Target Program (FTP) “Russian Transportation System Modernization for the period of 2010-2020”.
Reconstruction and modernization of the Volga-Baltic waterway and the Northern Dvina sluice system are among the highest priorities of the transport strategy of the Vologda region.
For its implementation it is supposed to allocate from the federal budget 1127.6 million rubles. Reconstruction will not only help to restore the full shipping on the rivers, but also ensure the safety of passing ships.
Since 2004 the volume of cargo handling at ports of Volga-Baltic Waterway has increased. It totaled 17,5 million tones. The freight volume includes wood, metal, mineral fertilizers and other goods. As of October 1, 2013, traffic volume on the Volga-Baltic Waterway that passes through the Vologda Oblast made up 976 ths tons of wood, 1,4 mln tons of metal and 148 ths tons of chemical goods. Shipping via Volgo-Baltic waterway will continue to increase, according to Mr Kuvshinnikov.
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