Ticino sets the pace

Grande Lugano
Grande Lugano

In fine weather the red of Lugano station, which was renovated in 2014, is as striking as the deep blue sky. (2017, Wikipedia)

Switzerland's oldest and finest stations are in Locarno, Lugano and Bellinzona. As soon as the decision to build the Gotthard rail line is taken in 1868, builders in Ticino set to work. The magnificent neoclassical structures are completed by 1874, even before trains start operating through the canton and the Gotthard tunnel has been excavated. The buildings on the northern stretch, in Altdorf, Schwyz and Arth-Goldau, are modest by comparison. By the time construction starts in central Switzerland, money is already in short supply. Most of these stations have since been replaced by new ones.

« To conclude, we must point out that the occasional complaints from hoteliers due to their guests being disturbed in the early hours by the noises of livestock being unloaded at the station have been taken into account in that livestock wagons are no longer allowed on goods trains arriving before 6.45 a.m. »

SBB Directorate General, Letter to Federal Councillor Josef Escher, 03.09.1953
38 million francs

cost of railways in Ticino at the end of the 19th century.

14.6 million francs

target cost of railways in Ticino.

10.6 million francs

cost of Bellinzona, Biasca, Cadenazzo, Locarno, Lugano and Chiasso stations (28 per cent of the total building cost).

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