Warsaw – Lodz railway modernisation
Stage 1 – Skierniewice Lodz
The railway line between Warsaw and Lodz is being modernized in stages. Stage 1, the rebuilding of the line between Skierniewice and Lodz Widzew, was started in July 2006 and completed on 16 June 2008. The cost of the project was 905,151,233 PLN, of which 678,863,425 PLN was funded by the European Regional Development Fund and 226,287,508 PLN by the Polish Government. At the time, the project was billed by PKP as the biggest infrastructure in Poland.
We took our Chief Engineer to Koluszki1 station, the site of a major junction on the line, and recorded his comments.
All photographs were taken on Sunday 24 May, 2009. Click twice on the pictures for a magnified view.
The new platform for the Warsaw – Lodz services is on the left. Other trains use the older platform on the right.
The Lodz platform on the left seems OK, but read on. The platform on the right – rebuilt in the 1970s – has been resurfaced but not raised. The new platform awnings constructed on both platforms stop about a metre short of the platform edge and don’t reach as far as the subway or the ticket office.
The view to Warsaw
The main line for Warsaw trains appears to be well laid out for 160 km/h running. But what is the lady with the shopping trolley doing on the staff crossing? And why is there no warning device which is activated when a train is about to cross.
The view to Lodz
Once again, the lines for the Lodz services seems well laid out. The tracks to Tomaszow Mazowiecki and Piotrkow Trybunalski less well so.
Wroclaw-bound train arrives at Koluszki
Let’s hope that the lady with the trolley is clear of the crossing. Clicking the picture for an enlarged view shows that one of the ‘main lines’ is in fact a badly aligned dead end and that Warsaw bound trains leaving the Lodz platform road have to negotiate a couple of crossovers to reach the running line.
Weeds sprouting up in the newly laid sidings.
It would appear that the reused ballast has not been properly cleaned and screened.
The white line is disintegrating.
The home-made concoction of cement and paint has not lasted one winter! The appropriate material for the job is thermoplastic paint.
Overall, this seems to have been a modernisation carried out on the cheap where a glossy appearance took precedence over functionality.
It would have been appropriate to conclude this article with a Google Maps view of Koluszki station, but unfortunately in the satellite photography purchased by Google, Koluszki station is under a cloud!
1 Pronounced “COLL-OO-SH-KI”.
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