Remigijus Žalkauskas, Edmundas Bartkevičius, Edgaras Linkevičius, Julius Bačkaitis, Kšištof Godvod


Differently to other European countries Lithuania has inherited from Soviet time period quite width protection zones of state importance with wooden plantations along railways. Those protection zones vary from 20 m (in cities) up to 45 -70 m (in rural areas) in one side. The planted or spontaneous wooden plantations within those zones occupy over 2 thous. ha. The status of protective plantations serve for multifunctional purposes by ensuring railway traffic safety, mitigating negative impact of railway traffic, exhibiting Lithuanian landscape for travellers, improving landscape connectivity, living and working environment quality.  At the same time there is a challenge for proper management of those plantations and profitability. In the middle of XX century planted pioneer species reach or is going to reach mature age. There is the threat of increasing number of dangerous trees, challenge for ensuring continuous cover of protective plantations, their services and structure match for predominating function.
This study presents the challenges for future development and society preferences to services of protective lineside plantations along railways. The results of analysis of present condition of railway lineside vegetation, as well the results of social survey showed, what it is not enough just to manage the dangerous trees for railway safeness but it is essential complex means for protective plantations development, services succession.  

Keywords: lineside vegetation, railways, protective plantations, social preferences

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