The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 3, Issue 1 (May 1, 1928)
Progress in Switzerland
Progress in Switzerland.
While Spain and France are energetically pushing ahead with electrification proposals, much greater progress is being made in mountain-locked Switzerland, the greatest railway centre in Europe, whose railways form the pivot upon which depend trans-Continental services innumerable. The Budget proposals for the Swiss railways for 1928 provided for an expenditure of 49.7 million francs upon constructional works. The first stage of the Swiss Government Railways electrification will be completed this year, and this will enable considerable reductions to be effected in the outlay on the acquisition of material and construction. The cost of the current year's electrification is put at about 15 million francs, as compared with 40 millions for 1927.
At December 31, 1927, the Swiss Government Railways operated approximately 1,000 miles of electrified track, to which there will be added about 100 miles during 1928. By the end of the present year some 60 per cent. of the Swiss Government Railways will have been converted to electricity. After 1928 a pause will intervene in the electrification plan, this halt being designed to allow of a more gradual reduction in the staff and in the number of steam locomotives which are being replaced by electric traction in the new era. The Swiss Government Railways are among the most efficiently managed and operated transportation undertakings in the world. By means of electrification a great deal is being done to retain business to rail which would otherwise be captured by the road carriers, and trans-Alpine travel is also being immensely stimulated by the replacement of steam by electrification.