Results for Swiss Federal Railways SBB

19 May 1906

The second tunnel

After the Gotthard, the Simplon Tunnel becomes the second rail line through the Swiss Alps. Now, western Switzerland is connected to the south.

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1 May 1909

Nationalisation of the Gotthard Railway Company

The SBB is created following the nationalisation of Switzerland’s major private railways. The last to be integrated is the Gotthard, which proves to be the most profitable line.

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1914

The battle with nature

Railways are a comparatively environmentally friendly means of transport. In the Alps, however, they come up against the forces of nature.

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1924

Water replaces coal

Electrification of the Gotthard line is completed in 1924. Switzerland now gets the energy to power its trains from its own hydroelectric plants rather than coal from Prussia.

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1971

The abortive project begins

The plan for the first Gotthard Base Tunnel is thwarted by the economic crisis of the mid-1970s.

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1985

A dissertation revives a railway

Rarely has an academic dissertation caused such a political stir. Hans-Jörg Bertschi’s work lends new momentum to the NRLA.

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1987

Rail 2000

For all the talk of the NRLA, Rail 2000 is also a big part of the story. It encouraged the drive towards a denser rail network and an expanded infrastructure.

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1 January 1999

The SBB becomes a limited company

Rail Reform 1 aims at a gradual liberalisation of rail transport.

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2011

Using the tunnels to get away

The vast majority of passengers taking the train for their journey through the Alps are travelling not for business but for pleasure.

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1 June 2016

High-profile guests at the opening ceremony

No expense is spared at the Gotthard Base Tunnel inauguration ceremony in 2016. Merkel, Hollande and Renzi are in attendance, but not the heads of the EU.

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2017

43,152 trains

In the opening months, traffic in the new Gotthard Base Tunnel occasionally grinds to a halt. The SBB lay on extra trains to cope.

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12 August 2017

A vulnerable transport system

When the track subsides at Rastatt in summer 2017, traffic grinds to a halt. The collapse highlights the fragility of Europe’s rail system.

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2021

Whither the mountain routes?

Not everyone is a winner from the NRLA. The future of the world-famous Gotthard mountain route through the Urseren Valley and the Leventina is still undecided.

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