Forch railway

The Forchbahn is a narrow gauge narrow gauge railway that runs between Zurich and belongs Esslingen in Switzerland and the same Forchbahn AG ( FB). The name comes from the village of Forch and the pass of the same ( 676 m above sea level. M. ) between Lake Zurich and Greifensee, which is overcome by the train at about halfway.

The Forchbahn was opened on November 27, 1912, replacing an existing bus route since 1905, which was unusual for that time. Since its opening, the Forchbahn is connected by the joint management board and management closely with today's transport authorities Zurich ( VBZ).

The route traveled length is about 16 kilometers, are 13:06 kilometer ( Rehalp -Esslingen ) Forchbahn and include two tunnels of 280 and 1750 meters in length. The distance between Rehalp and Neue Forch is doppelspurig expanded and designed for the way working, the driving is electric with 1200 volts DC. In Zurich will drive on the network of tram Zurich at about three kilometers between Rehalp and the Zurich Stadelhofen. It belongs to the VBZ and like all Zurich tram routes expanded double track and electrified with 600 volts DC, it is basically navigate in the Setup mode.

Initially brought Forchbahn - popularly called Aunt Frieda - especially milk from the countryside to the city of Zurich. Today it is used mainly for transporting commuters to Zurich and of excursionists in the panhandle region. The trains run every quarter hour and dinner at half-hour intervals. In addition, drive at peak times so-called express trains, which are of Forch to Rehalp and vice versa without stopping en route and shorten the travel time from 35 minutes to 30 minutes.

Many a time has been discussed on an extension of the Forchbahn to Zurich main station without the plans but were realized.


In Esslingen Forchbahn had originally opened following the 1909, also meterspurige Uster Oetwil -Bahn ( UOE ), with the Forchbahn entertained the station jointly. The Uster Oetwil train in turn had long timber following the 1903 opened Wetzikon -mile track ( WMB ). A merger of the three tracks never materialized. The Uster Oetwil train closed its doors in 1949, a year later the tracks were broken off and also shut down the Wetzikon -mile track.

On October 5, 1941 collided between the station and Forch Scheurenstraße turning a blind two trains traveling at full speed. The motorman of one train was killed and the other suffered only minor injuries. Three passengers were seriously injured and eight easily.

In the 1950s, made ​​major modernization work in which large parts of the route were moved from the street on a separate track body. 1966, the freight has been set on the track.

In the 1970s, followed by further expansion steps which characterize the Forchbahn significantly today: 1970 the construction of the depot system Forch, the associated station Forch Forch and the tunnel under the simultaneously created Forch - highway ( A52 ) were opened. A year later it was decided to tunnel under the center of Zumikon, the construction work was started in 1973 and to 1975, during the construction decided to extend the tunnel yet. The 1758 meter long tunnel Zumikon with the two tunnel stops Zumikon and Maiacher opened in 1976 and runs the municipality of Zumikon almost completely.

The operating plan created in 1974 reported a requirement of about ten new bi- car trains ( two short-coupled Vierachswagen ) for the next two decades. The concept for the new rolling stock had been worked out with the VBZ and their suppliers and based on the new VBZ Tram type Be 4 /6 « Tram 2000 ". The Forchbahn derivative "FB 2000 " consisted of two close-coupled loading 4/4-Triebwagen that have as opposed to the six-axis VBZ counterpart does not have a joint, two-sided doors and a wider car body. Simultaneously with the first new VBZ trams was commissioned in 1976, the first three loading 8/8-Doppelzüge. By 1986, followed by further three double trains and four matching, four-axis control car. Of these cars turn the vehicle's current generation of tram Neuchâtel was derived. The type of vehicle in 1994 for the last time in the form of eight freely combinable Be delivered 4/4-Halbzügen.

Since inception of the Zurich Transport Network in 1990 Forchbahn belongs to and is integrated as S 18 in the network of S -Bahn Zurich.

In 2004, the Forchbahn thirteen new low-floor vehicles from Stadler Rail (Be 4/6-Halbzüge ). The six old BDe 4/4-Triebwagen and some control cars were given away to Madagascar, where they - equipped with diesel engines - should be used in the revived rail of Antananarivo. When control car 107 Kupplungsanlenkung was so badly damaged that it was scrapped at the company Hügler AG in Dübendorf.

2009 Stadelhoferplatz was rebuilt, so the traffic of Forch and tram on separate tracks and turning loops can be handled.

Rolling stock

  • Be 8/8 21/22-31/32 (1976-1986)
  • Bt 201-204 (1981/1982)
  • Be 4/4 51-58 (1994 )
  • Be 4/6 61-73 (2004/ 2005)

Schindler / SIG Be 4/ 4 at Stadelhofen