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History of the Park Railway Dresden

 

A krauss engine at the International Hygiene Exhibition in Dresden in the year 1930.

1925

1925 three steam engines were built by Krauss & Co. in Munich. The miniature railways were constructed for the transport of visitors on large exhibitions in Germany, France, Spain, Ireland and in the Netherlands.
During World War II the engines were hidden in a stone quarry near Kamenz.

1950

The town council of Dresden decided to build a children´s railway in the year 1950. Two steam engines were repaired. The first railway line passed from the station Stübelplatz (today: Straßburger Platz) to the Zoo station. The Line was 1.3 kilometres (0.8 miles) long.

Full steam through the park
Two trains at zoo station

1951

In 1951 the railway line was expanded to the stations Carolasee, Karcherallee and Palaisteich. Now, the round trip has a distance of 5.6 kilometers (3.5 miles) and takes 30 minutes. The railway was given the name "Pioniereisenbahn Dresden".

"Pioniere" (pioneers) were school children, who worked as guards, ticket collectors or as signalmen in the signal box. Children ensured that everything ran smoothly. The engine drivers and the track workers came from the East German Railways ("Deutsche Reichsbahn").

Full steam through the park
The volunteers of the railway visit the saurierpark with the sponsors association.

1962

In 1962 a new accumulator locomotive was built, because the number of passengers continued to rise. Tracks and the stations were rebuilt. New passenger cars were built.

1976

The absolute peak number of ridership was in the year 1976. In that year nearly 657,000 passengers were transported by the "Pioniereisenbahn".

Full steam through the park
Two trains at zoo station

1982

The second accumulator locomotive was built in 1982 with the aim of discharging the steam engines.

1990 and 1993

The railway got the new name "Dresdner Parkeisenbahn".
In 1993, the railway became the property of the state of Saxony and was entrusted to the care of "Schlössern und Gärten Dresden".

Full steam through the park
Two trains at zoo station

1995 and 1996

The whole trackside has been renewed since 1995. New sleepers and tracks were built in. Four new passenger cars were built in 1996 by a British Company. These passenger cars are covered and have radiators for the cold days.

1998

Twelve passenger cars got roofs for potecting passengers in case of bad weather in 1998.
At the weekend of 3rd and 4th October 1998 three english guest locomotives from the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway (E&R) were operation in Dresden.

Full steam through the park
Two trains at zoo station

1999 and 2000

In 1999, the manufactory of Volkswagen (so called "Glaserne Manufaktur") was built, so the station "Strassburger Platz" had to be dismounted. The new station was established in 2000.

2002

During the flood in Saxony at 2002, the tracks were flooded and damaged. The trains didn´t run for one week.

Full steam through the park
Two trains at zoo station

2003

In may 2003, the steam engine from the Park Railway Leipzig was in operation in Dresden. It was the first operation in Dresden since 1950.

2010

The Park Railway Dresden celebrates its sixtieth anniversary with a big party. The steam engine from the Park Railway Leipzig was a guest in Dresden. This engine and our two steam locomotives celebrates the eighty-fith birthday too.

Full steam through the park
Full steam through the park

2013

The Park Railway Dresden greeted its 24,000,000th passenger.

Today, about 220,000 passengers are carried every year by the railway. 200 children spend their free time by being on duty in the Great Garden.

Full steam through the park

 

Text: S. Muehle, E. Ulbricht

Pictures: collection Arndt, Deutsche Fotothek Höhne & Pohl, D. Haußig, archive Park Railway Dresden, P. Reichler, collection Muehle, collection D. Henke, sponsors´association from Park Railway Dresden

 

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