Trivia: Interesting or unusual railway stations in other countries.

stadlerkiss

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So in the UK we have plenty of unusual stations that are quite well known on this forum. For example there is stations like Manulla Junction and Smallbrook Junction which have no public access and you can only change trains there. There is stations like Bordesley and Polesworth which get trains in one direction only. There is stations like Lakenheath and Shippea Hill with extremely infrequent services. There is stations like Altnabreac and Corrour which are extremely remote with nothing there. I am sure that there are plenty of other examples if different unusual or interesting stations as well.

What i am interested in is any unusual or interesting stations like this that are in any other countries?

One of the most unusual ones that i can think of is in Estonia where Aardla Station and Kirsi Station are two separate stations which look like one station. So it is basically a common layout of two platforms opposite each other (just like most stations in the UK like Chichester or Gerrards Cross or Hassocks or Shippea Hill for some random examples. However in reality it is two separate single track lines that come from Tartu and then separate just before the station with each platform serving both directions on single track lines. Looking at it on Google Satellite View gives a good idea. It is rather strange that they are considered two separate stations though instead of one station.

Another one is Bayerisch Eisenstein (German name) or Zelezna Ruda Alzbetin (Czech name) railway station which is a station that has the international German and Czech border going right through the station.

Can anyone else think of any other stations that are unusual or interesting or have anything worth noting about them in any other countries?

I look forward to hearing about any examples that anyone can think of.
 
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tasky

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Brussels Congress station is in central Brussels... it's located between Brussels Central and Brussels North... despite being a massive building with great art deco reliefs on it, since 2002 it's only had a limited service, with a few passengers a day using it. The reason is that it mostly served a large government complex that fell out of use, and because it's very close to two other stations which are more usefully located for most things.

The same is also true of Brussels Chapel, which is similar but between Brussels Central and Brussels South. It get one train an hour with no early morning or evening services.
 
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Spoorslag '70

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Further belgian stations: Mortsel-Deurnesteenweg (only has a sunday service), line 82 (Aalst and Burst excluded, peak hours only with very limited use), Zebrugge-Strand/-Dorp (Strand only during the summer holidays and during weekends, Dorp only when Strand is not served).

In the Netherlands, the most intresting might be Eemshaven, a couple of hundreds metres from the sea.

On the Isle Of Man, Colby The Level has a weeny platform whilst Bulgham has stunning views. Basicly all other (non-trivial) shacks on the MER are fun to be fair.

In Germany, Mannheim-Käfertal gets just two trains MFO, Binsfeld (near Düren) just a tiny gravel hill as a platform.
 

Mag_seven

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Berlin Hauptbahnhof - a magnificent atrium like structure where you can look down on trains below over a balcony from quite a height!
 

30907

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Ludwigshafen Hbf - triangular and on multiple levels, but no longer the town's main station.
Tabor (CZ) where the branch to Bechyne starts from a totally separate platform - common on NG in Switzerland but unusual for standard gauge. I don't think it's unique in CZ either but can't remember where else.
 

181

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So in the UK we have plenty of unusual stations that are quite well known on this forum. For example there is stations like Manulla Junction
If you go there (or go there again if you've been before), it might be wise not to tell the locals that you think it's in the UK! (Although I suppose it was when it was built).

Latour De Carol and Montreux, each with three different track gauges
Also Jenbach.

I think there may be (or have been) at least one station between Görlitz and Zittau that is in Poland but serves a village in Germany, having been built long before the local river became the border. (I haven't checked that, though).

If Wikipedia is to be believed, the main buildings at Colmar (Alsace) and Gdansk are almost identical, having been built to the same design when both were part of the German empire.
 

MarcVD

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Bruxelles Schuman : a station with a bridge inside a tunnel

Bruxelles-Schuman.jpg

Antwerpen Centraal : the only station in the world with tracks on 3 levels

Antwerpen_Centraal_Atrium02.jpg

Namur : a train station with a bus station on its roof (still under construction )

Gare namur.png
 

87015

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If anyone can explain Bucuresti Pajura / Triaj to me I’d be much obliged. Five tracks, three platforms, trains stops on all five tracks, two station names including different timetable boards. It seems a total nonsense, but I’m willing to listen...
 

JWK

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A mainland European version of Manulla/Smallbrook Junctions is Sagliains, on the Rhätische Bahn (or Viaifer Retica as it should be called at that location) network. For foot passengers, it has no access to the outside world and is used solely for connecting between trains coming through the Veraina Tunnel from Klosters and Landquart and services running to/from the upper Inn valley. The station opened with the Veraina Tunnel for the typically Swiss reason that the connections and Taktfahrplan wouldn’t work if they were made at the existing station of Lavin, a mile away. The ‘no external access’ rule at Sagliains does not, of course, apply to the adjacent terminal for the narrow-gauge car-carrying shuttle through the Veraina Tunnel. https://flic.kr/p/YZEEkJ

Sticking with unusual stations on the Swiss narrow gauge, there’s also the remarkable Aareschulcht Ost on the MIB line from Meiringen to Innertkirchen. Here the railway line runs through a tunnel just behind and parallel to the gorge of the River Aare (the Aareschlucht in question). The ‘station’ was built to serve the eastern end of the popular walk through the gorge and consists of simply a doorway in the rock face and a pair of buttons to request the train going in the desired direction to stop. Pressing the button illuminates a signal in the tunnel, and the railcar stops with its front door adjacent to the rock face door, which the traincrew then opens to allow passengers into the tunnel and onto the train. Last time I travelled there, my companion was convinced we were waiting for a lift to take us down to the platform and became increasingly alarmed that we were going to miss the train as the lift was taking so long to arrive... https://flic.kr/p/YZEEkJ
 

30907

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...there may be (or have been) at least one station between Görlitz and Zittau that is in Poland but serves a village in Germany, having been built long before the local river became the border. (I haven't checked that, though).
Krzewina Zgorzelecka on the East bank of the Neisse serves the town of Ostritz across the river. There is also a village called (since 1945 I presume) Krzewina about 1km away. I travelled the line in 2000, before Poland joined the EU, and ISTR a border post on the bridge.
 

paddington

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Thionville to Perl only runs twice a day on weekends, stopping at various run-down shacks on the way. Was the only passenger when I took it.

Some stations in NSW, Australia are almost as small as Binsfeld (Nörvenich) mentioned above, for example Hilldale, but most of these have been revamped in the past few years so are no longer run-down. Wondabyne is also inaccessible by road vehicle and most trains passing are 8 coaches despite the tiny platform

I find Zürich HB interesting in terms of tracks as there are several routes into the station from e.g. the airport, where trains can arrive in opposite directions and the official map designers have at least tried to represent these diagramatically. Compare to Berlin Ostkreuz where the official map confuses me.

Potsdam Pirschheide has an X layout on two levels but trains no longer stop at the upper level.
 

eastwestdivide

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Den Haag, NL, where the RET metro/tram lines run above the buffer stops of the rail station, with bonus Mondrian-type murals and fancy roof:

Den Haag.jpg
 
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Krzewina Zgorzelecka on the East bank of the Neisse serves the town of Ostritz across the river. There is also a village called (since 1945 I presume) Krzewina about 1km away. I travelled the line in 2000, before Poland joined the EU, and ISTR a border post on the bridge.
In 2008:

KZO1.JPG KZO2.JPG
 

Wirewiper

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Den Haag, NL, where the RET metro/tram lines run above the buffer stops of the rail station, with bonus Mondrian-type murals and fancy roof:

View attachment 70910
That's not unlike Paris Gare d'Austerlitz where Métro Line 5 has a station under its roof.

Talking of Paris, there is also the odd arrangement at Mirabeau on line 10, which only has a platform on the eastbound line, westbound trains passing through on an adjacent track which rises on an incline.
 

Beebman

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Jestetten and Lottstetten stations in southern Germany are both owned and operated by the Swiss SBB railway as they're on the Zürich-Schaffhausen line which happens to pass through a section of German territory.
 

scarby

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Villefranque in France has just one train in each direction each day, as do several other stations on the Bayonne-St Jean Pied de Port branch.
 

Attachments

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In Melbourne, Australia, there's the four-track City Loop which (as the name suggests) takes a good fraction of the city's heavy-rail suburban trains in a loop around the city centre, via several underground stations along the way, to a nominal terminus at Flinders Street station.

This map at www.metrotrains.com.au gives you an idea of Melbourne's Metro network.

The three stations on the City Loop at Flagstaff, Melbourne Central* and Parliament have four underground platforms, each platform serving one of a group of geographic suburban lines. These groups correspond to the colours on the network diagram (light blue and hatched green share the same tunnel)

From first service on weekdays, trains travel around each of the single lines in the loop in such a direction that inbound commuters get a choice of all the city centre underground stations before the train terminates at Flinders St. The train then continues in service (usually back to the line from which it came), or runs empty (e.g. to an out-of-town stabling point) without traversing the loop.

In the afternoon, the direction of travel on each line through the loop is switched. Now trains depart from Flinders Street, pick up punters from the underground Loop stations, then head out to the suburbs.

At Flagstaff, Melbourne Central and Parliament, there is a short hiatus, roughly around 12.00 to 13.00, while the last morning train clears each tunnel then the first afternoon train comes in the opposite direction.

Reversible lines are reasonably common on urban railways around the world to deal with peak flows, but I'm not aware of anywhere else like these three stations, where every platform changes its direction in the middle of the day.

And apart from this operational oddity (and signals at both ends of the platforms) Parliament, Melbourne Central and Flagstaff look just like any other busy, big-city underground stations built in the second half of the 20th Century.

* Station was named Museum when the City Loop opened in the 1970s, but since re-named Melbourne Central as it's adjacent to a shopping mall of that name. Not because it's in any way the city's Hauptbahnhof.
 
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stut

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Sealdah station in Kolkata is an odd one. Almost all the long-distance trains serve Howrah station, on the other side of the river, but Sealdah is the hub for regional services (and some longer ones like the Darjeeling Mail) and one of the world's busiest. It's fairly typical of a secondary Indian railway station, but is on a junction, with practically all services terminating (there are no platforms on the through tracks - not that it stops people getting off, but the trains don't stop). What's rather odd is that the layout means that the northbound and southbound tracks are at right angles to each other. It makes for a particularly disorientating station. There's also a little mosque tucked away in the middle of the tracks.

It's been written about a lot, by people far better at it than me, but Kyoto station is a remarkable construction. At platform level, fairly typical of major Japanese stations, with different sub-stations for different rail companies, and a special section just for Shinkansen. Lots of renowned ekiben (station bento) providers, too. However, the main railway building is epic in scale and construction, although often criticised for being "not Japanese enough". It features JR's own department store (Isetan) built into the slope, and some sky walks and sky gardens high above the platforms.

 

AM9

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... Tabor (CZ) where the branch to Bechyne starts from a totally separate platform - common on NG in Switzerland but unusual for standard gauge. I don't think it's unique in CZ either but can't remember where else.
Just like the St Albans Abbey branch at Watford Junction actually.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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I haven't been, but the station at Nova Gorica is in Slovenia, but the forecourt is in Italy.
Whereas once it had armed border fences, now within Schengen there are apparently no obstacles any more.
Meanwhile all the usual border apparatus has sprung up between the states of the former Yugoslavia.
Berlin Friedrichstrasse is now not unusual at all, after nearly 40 years of being a fearsome rabbit warren of border controls between two worlds.
 

stut

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Helsingør, in Denmark is one I've always enjoyed. Formerly a train-ferry terminal, before the Øresund fixed link was opened, but still a busy ferry terminal. You can see where the tracks went off to the quay - though this is now a cycle park. It's an imposing station, a castle-like red-brick structure with an interior befitting the start of a great journey, and the platforms coming into a surprisingly calm central courtyard. The ferry terminal is effectively the same building. If you walk down the platform to outside the confines of the station structure, the Hornbækbanen runs light DMUs from there out on tram tracks round the station building and around the harbour off to cover the North Coast. The Lille Nord local service runs from here too as well as, slightly confusingly, Øresund trains to Sweden via Copenhagen.
 

duesselmartin

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Thionville to Perl only runs twice a day on weekends, stopping at various run-down shacks on the way. Was the only passenger when I took it.

Some stations in NSW, Australia are almost as small as Binsfeld (Nörvenich) mentioned above, for example Hilldale, but most of these have been revamped in the past few years so are no longer run-down. Wondabyne is also inaccessible by road vehicle and most trains passing are 8 coaches despite the tiny platform

I find Zürich HB interesting in terms of tracks as there are several routes into the station from e.g. the airport, where trains can arrive in opposite directions and the official map designers have at least tried to represent these diagramatically. Compare to Berlin Ostkreuz where the official map confuses me.

Potsdam Pirschheide has an X layout on two levels but trains no longer stop at the upper level.
Potsdam Pirschheide is of course the former Potsdam Hauptbahnhof during GDR days. It meant that train did not have to cross over West-Berlin territory.

Martin
 

Beebman

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Eijsden station in the Netherlands has 3000V DC OHLE rather than 1500V and is only served by Belgian SNCB trains.

Basel St. Johann station in Switzerland has 25kV AC OHLE rather than 15kV and is only served by French SNCF TER trains.

Emmerich-Elten station in Germany has 25kV AC OHLE rather than 15kV and is only served by multi-voltage Abellio trains.
 

eastwestdivide

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On a similar note, the stations north of Domodossola but still in Italy are electrified on the Swiss system, and served by Swiss BLS trains.
 

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