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Franzensfeste – Innichen
A Stadler flirt in Innichen train station
A Stadler flirt in Innichen train station
Route of the Pustertal Railway
Route number (RFI) : 44
Course book series (IT) : 210
Route length: 72.568 km
Gauge : 1435 mm ( standard gauge )
Power system : 3 kV RFI  =
Maximum slope : 20 
Minimum radius : 250 m
Top speed: 80 km / h
Route - straight ahead
Brenner train from Innsbruck Hbf
Station, station
0.000 Franzensfeste / Fortezza 747  m slm
0.734 Brenner railway to Bozen
1,819 Unterau / Pradisotto (until 1944)
Bridge (medium)
1.893 Bridge fortress Franzensfeste (78m) 744  m slm
2,340 Eisack Bridge (204m) 745  m slm
3.293 Aicha / Aica 750  m slm
3.843 Ochsenbichl tunnel / Galleria Colle del Bue (257 m) 752  m slm
4,780 Schabs / Schiaves (until 1962) 757  m slm
Riggertal loop (planned connection to the Brennerbahn)
Station, station
8.100 Mühlbach / Rio di Pusteria 749  m slm
Station, station
13.475 Vintl / Vandoies 744  m slm
14.075 Rienz (57m) 745  m slm
19,450 St. Sigmund / S. Sigismondo 761  m slm
Station, station
23.699 Ehrenburg / Casteldarne 787  m slm
Stop, stop
29,368 St. Lorenzen / S. Lorenzo (since 2008) 815  m slm
29.615 St. Lorenzen / S. Lorenzo (until 1988) 816  m slm
Station, station
32,442 Bruneck / Brunico 828  m slm
32.872 former Tauferer Bahn to Sand in Taufers
32.839 Rienz (28m)
Stop, stop
33,200 Brunico North / Brunico North (since 2013)
36,807 Lamprechtsburgtunnel / Galleria Monte Lamberto (338 m)
Stop, stop
38.455 Percha - Kronplatz / Perca-Plan de Corones (since 2010)
38.686 Rienz (100m) 932  m slm
Tunnel - if there are several tunnels in a row
39.819 Wielentunnel / Galleria Vila (61 m)
40.029 Rasener Tunnel / Galleria Rasun (192 m)
Station, station
43,704 Olang - Antholz / Valdaora-Anterselva 1031  m slm
49.728 Welsberg Tunnel / Galleria Monguelfo (140 m)
Station, station
50.896 Welsberg - Gsies / Monguelfo-Casies 1090  m slm
Station, station
55.943 Niederdorf - Prague / Villa Bassa Braies 1152  m slm
Calalzo Dolomite Railway
Station, station
60.717 Toblach / Dobbiaco 1210  m slm
64.509 Innichen / San Candido traction current change 1176  m slm
Stop, stop
69.115 Vierschach - Helm / Versciaco-Elmo (since 2014) 1137  m slm
72.568 State border Austria / Italy 1113  m slm
Route - straight ahead
Drautalbahn to Maribor

The Pustertalbahn ( Italian Ferrovia della Val Pusteria ) is a standard-gauge , single-track railway line in the South Tyrolean Pustertal between Franzensfeste and Innichen . The route branches off from the Brennerbahn in Franzensfeste and leads via Bruneck and Toblach to San Candido, where it merges into the Drautalbahn .

Historically, there was no separation between the Pustertalbahn and the Drautalbahn, as the concession, construction and commissioning for the entire route from Villach to Franzensfeste took place in one piece. However, since the system separation point between the Italian and Austrian traction current systems is now located in the Innichen train station , this is usually the terminus of the two lines. Alternatively, the state border east of Innichen or the Toblacher Saddle west of Innichen are sometimes seen as the endpoints of the two routes.


As early as 1858, the southern railway company had the first plans and shortly thereafter also the building permit to connect Vienna with Tyrol via the southern railway.

The company Hügel & Sager was commissioned with the construction of the Pustertal Railway and began construction work in late autumn 1869. After this had proceeded much faster than planned, operations on the 209 km long Pustertal and Drautalbahn started on November 20, 1871, a year earlier than originally planned. While the Drautalbahn from Villach to Lienz was built as a flat railway, it represents a mountain railway in its further course to Franzensfeste, which reaches its highest point at the Toblacher Sattel at approx. 1215 m.

An original task of the Pustertalbahn was to connect East Tyrol to its capital Innsbruck . However, with the collapse of the Danube monarchy and the loss of South Tyrol to Italy after the end of the First World War , the importance of the railway declined sharply.

From 1985 to 1989, the Pustertal and Drautal railways were electrified on the basis of a state treaty signed in 1984 between Italy and Austria. At the same time, almost all viaducts were renewed and all tunnels for electrical operation were expanded in profile during two line closures in 1986 and 1988. Special efforts were required for the tunnel near Monguelfo , where, due to constant collapses, the entire mountain cover of the 140 m long tunnel was removed and reapplied after the construction of the new tunnel pipe. While the Pustertalbahn is equipped with the Italian electricity system (3 kV direct current ), the Drautalbahn is equipped with the Austrian electricity system (15 kV / 16.7 Hz alternating current ). The system separation point is located in Innichen train station. During ongoing operations, electrical operation was also started when the timetable was changed on May 28, 1989. As part of the electrification, many level crossings in the Pusteria Valley were replaced by underpasses, whereby the tracks and embankments were dismantled and the prefabricated underpasses were hydraulically pushed in during the non-operating period during the night, the superstructure and substructure were also reinforced and the station facilities were redesigned . The background to the electrification was the relief of the burner railway, whereby the Italian side intended to run up to ten pairs of freight trains a day including the rolling road on the Pustertal route: this has not happened to this day. In fact, the opposite happened, because if a well-frequented international express train used to run with the "Val Pusteria / Pustertal" on the route Vienna Südbf –Villach – Lienz – Franzensfeste– Innsbruck Hbf , this train run was stopped with the timetable change in May 1996, which means There is no longer any cross-border long-distance traffic in the Pusteria Valley.

Between 2008 and 2010, the South Tyrolean Transport Structures (STA) coordinated an overall renovation of the Pustertal Railway, financed by the State of South Tyrol . The route was initially prepared by adapting the stations and the interlocking technology to a half-hourly cycle, which was introduced gradually by December 2009. All stations were equipped with 55 cm high platforms, underpasses enable the time-saving simultaneous entry of crossing trains. The route remote control and the passenger information systems have also been brought up to date with the latest technology. Waiting rooms were also renewed, elevators built, train station areas redesigned, eight new trains purchased, parking spaces and bicycle parking spaces built and two new stops opened: The St. Lorenzen stop was opened in December 2008, the Percha stop on December 12, 2010 , which was opened by Cable car provides a direct connection to the Kronplatz ski area . Thanks to these measures, the number of passengers tripled within five years (January – November 2006: 312,000 passengers; January – November 2011: 980,000 passengers).

In October 2013, the new Bruneck Nord stop was opened near the hospital. In December 2014, the inauguration of the new stop in Vierschach , which has a cable car connection to the Helm and the associated ski area.


Up to electrification, mainly steam-hauled trains were used, initially with locomotives from the Südbahn-Gesellschaft and from 1918 from FS Italia . The 740 , 741 and 940 locomotives were particularly influential until the early 1980s. The use of diesel locomotives and railcars only lasted for a short time. After a mixed electrical operation with re-spanning in Innichen, only two-system articulated multiple units Stadler Flirt of the SAD , but also the FS, are used. Between Franzensfeste and Innichen there is a 30-minute cycle during the day, and also on weekends during the winter season. Every second train also continues to Lienz. In winter, the trains ending in Innichen run to Sillian, but without stopping in Weitlanbrunn. Some trains are also connected to the Brenner Railway and on to Merano.

Corridor traffic

From 1946 - until Austria joined the EU - on the basis of the Paris Agreement for the creation of a direct rail connection from East Tyrol to North Tyrol, through trains between Innsbruck and Lienz were operated in privileged through traffic without passport and customs controls at the expense of ÖBB . These trains did not have a scheduled stop on Italian territory, and getting on and off was forbidden during service stops. With the accession of Italy and Austria to the Schengen area , this special status lost its importance, the former corridor trains still existed as direct connections Innsbruck - Lienz, but now also served the stations on Italian territory. Until the electrification and commissioning of the u. a. Two-system locomotives of the 1822 series procured for this traffic , the cross-border trains were run with diesel locomotives of the 5081 series (rail bus) and 2043 . Due to the ongoing technical operational problems with the 1822 series, diesel locomotives of the 2043 series continued to be used as replacements. From the end of 2006 the multi-system locomotives ES64F4 (corresponding to the DB class 189) rented by the ÖBB from Siemens-Dispolok were then regularly in use, which were designated as E.189 in Italy. After the shutdown and sale of the entire 1822 series, mainly Taurus multi-system locomotives of the 1216 series have been in service since summer 2007 .

With the 2013/14 winter timetable, the last two daily pairs of corridor trains operated by ÖBB were discontinued and replaced by bus services operated by ÖBB-Postbus GmbH . The offer has been extended to four journeys in each direction and the fare per person has been reduced from EUR 22.30 to EUR 15. By eliminating all stops on the South Tyrolean side, the travel time between Lienz and Innsbruck could be shortened by half an hour to three hours. As a result of this conversion, the ordering costs for the State of Tyrol fell from 2.7 to 1.2 million euros. Affected East Tyrolean citizens perceived the changed offer as a deterioration. Students protested with train destination displays covered by banners against Ingrid Felipe, the State Transport Authority, and around 250 citizens said goodbye to the last train when it left Lienz with a wreath and party slip . The train drivers previously used on these trains now fear that their licenses will expire, which occurs automatically after six months of non-use and could make it even more difficult to restart the connection. It is also unclear whether the cancellation of the trains by the state of Tyrol was even lawful, as these services were based on a state treaty that cannot be terminated at the state level.

Freight transport

As already mentioned, the pairs of freight trains planned for electrification did not materialize, but before the new Pontebbana was completed in the early 1990s, several empty freight trains ran daily. In addition, the import of the Fiat models Panda, Cinquecento and Seicento made in Poland was handled through the Pustertal. The route was only of particular importance for a short time when the Brenner Railway was interrupted, when almost a hundred freight and long-distance passenger trains traveled the route.

Until 2009 there was only regular freight traffic between Bruneck and Franzensfeste. The trains, coming and going from Hall in Tirol, mostly run in the mornings on certain days of the week. From 2012 there was no more freight traffic on the Pustertalbahn.

future plans

Schematic graphic of the Riggertal loop

The Riggertalschleife project is always a topic of discussion: after leaving the Pustertal valley, the Pustertalbahn currently swings north into the Wipptal and ends at Franzensfeste station , which is why passengers traveling in the direction of Brixen and Bozen have to change to a south-facing train. In order to save this majority of passengers the detour and change, the idea of ​​an additional route is in the room, in which the Riggertal (a short valley section on the Eisack ) is crossed by a bridge and the trains from the Pustertal are no longer exclusively Franzensfeste, but alternatively Head south to Brixen. This measure would significantly shorten the travel time from Bruneck to Brixen and Bozen. On December 1, 2016, 49 million euros were earmarked for the Riggertal loop in the operational plan for the Fund for Development and Cohesion .



  • Francesco Pozzato: The train in the Puster Valley . 1871-1989. Athesia, Bozen 1989, ISBN 88-7014-540-9 .
  • Francesco Pozzato: Immagini di treni. Impression railroad . Valdaora // Olang. Athesia, Bozen 2007, ISBN 88-6011-070-X .

Web links

Commons : Pustertalbahn  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Ordine di Servizio n.99 del 1962
  2. ^ The opening of the Villach – Franzensfeste railway . In: Wiener Zeitung . November 21, 1871, p. 696 ( online at ANNO [accessed November 19, 2011]).
  3. ^ A b Francesco Pozzato: The railway in the Pustertal . 1871-1989. Athesia, Bozen 1989, ISBN 88-7014-540-9 , p. 120 .
  4. ^ Francesco Pozzato: The railway in the Puster Valley . 1871-1989. Athesia, Bozen 1989, ISBN 88-7014-540-9 , p. 128 .
  5. Pustertal Bahn: passenger numbers tripled in five years. Press service of the Autonomous Province of Bolzano - South Tyrol, December 9, 2011, accessed on May 12, 2014 .
  6. ↑ The new Bruneck Nord train stop opens. Südtirol Online (stol.it), October 13, 2013, archived from the original on December 12, 2013 ; Retrieved December 6, 2013 .
  7. Vierschach: New train stop in operation - "A milestone". Press service of the Autonomous Province of Bolzano - South Tyrol, December 14, 2014, accessed on December 14, 2014 .
  8. ^ Francesco Pozzato: The railway in the Puster Valley . 1871-1989. Athesia, Bozen 1989, ISBN 88-7014-540-9 , p. 46 .
  9. Osttiroler Bote, December 26, 2013, p. 39.
  10. ^ Opposition wants special state parliament on direct train, In: Tiroler Tageszeitung, No. 228 of August 22, 2013, p. 6.
  11. ^ Angry students practice quiet protest, In: Kleine Zeitung, September 29, 2013, p. 45.
  12. ^ The very last descent in Lienz, In: Bezirksblätter Osttirol, Edition 51, 18/19. December 2013, p. 9.
  13. Engine drivers warn of train stop. In: tirol.ORF.at . October 31, 2013, accessed November 2, 2013.
  14. Direct train: Vienna wants to avert lawsuit against the Republic, In: Tiroler Tageszeitung, No. 253, September 12, 2013, p. 33.
  15. Riggertalschleife: The planning begins. Südtirol Online , June 9, 2015, archived from the original on November 23, 2015 ; accessed on November 17, 2015 .
  16. 49 million for the Riggertal loop. Südtirol Online , December 2, 2016, archived from the original on January 4, 2017 ; accessed on January 14, 2018 .

Coordinates: 46 ° 47 ′ 37 "  N , 11 ° 55 ′ 41"  E