Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

A small point

Posted in Customer service, Europe, Metro by Chairman Pip on 11 June 2011

It probably won’t surprise you to learn that the shortest national railway in the world belongs to the smallest independent country in the world. The Vatican City State is the proud owner of Ferrovia Vaticano (Vatican Railway), which consists of a pair of 300m running lines and a single station, Città del Vaticano. This connects to the Ferrovie dello Stato network at Roma San Pietro, joining the Rome-Viterbo line. The route was built between 1929, when the Lateran Treaty was signed, and 1933, with the railway station opening in 1934. However, since completition, it has seen only sporadic use, although it is still maintained well. This to me seems a waste, as it essentially serves as the Pope’s private railway, only for the Pope to travel primarily by car and aeroplane. Were it to be cleared for high speed operation, allowing trains from the TAV network to access it, then there is no reason that the Vatican could not purchase a high speed train for travel through Europe (a “papal train”). However, what about this as an idea? Convert the Vatican line to light rail and install an automated people mover between Città del Vaticano and Roma San Pietro that is for public use so that people would not necessarily have to go through the streets of Rome to reach it. It just seems pointless to me for this piece of infrastructure to be there, to be maintained, but not be used.

“‘The next train leaving Vatican City is …'”
Rail Transport in Vatican City

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One Response

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  1. Chris said, on 12 June 2011 at 10:52 am

    Its essentially a siding off the main rail network – one of thousands that dont see regular use. Big deal.


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