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 Most of these stations have since been replaced by new ones.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