Turku Central railway station
|This article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2010)|
|Address||Ratapihankatu 37, 20100 Turku
Bangårdsgatan 37, 20100 Åbo
|Structure type||ground station|
|Owned by||Finnish Transport Agency|
The Turku Central railway station (Finnish: Turun päärautatieasema, Swedish: Åbo centralstation) is a railway station in the VII District of Turku, Finland. It has VR services to Helsinki and towards Joensuu (most terminate in Tampere or Pieksämäki). The station serves approximately a million passengers annually.
The railway station was opened in 1876, together with the newly built railway between Turku and Tampere, in a celebration attended by the future Tsar Alexander III of Russia. Services were at first only to Tampere and Toijala, and the significance of railways was rather minor. In 1899, a new railway to Helsinki was opened, and subsequently rail traffic to and from Turku became more frequent.
The older station was demolished in 1938, and a new, more modern, one was built in its place. The current building, completed in 1940, was designed by Finnish architects Väinö Vähäkallio and Martti Välikangas.
In addition to the two main railway lines to Helsinki and Joensuu, the station has handled passenger traffic to Naantali and Uusikaupunki. These local lines have been discontinued due to lack of use, but are still used by goods traffic. In addition, there is talk of re-establishing the line to Naantali in the near future,[when?] either as a museum railway line or a form of local public transport.
Unlike the Helsinki Central railway station, which stands out as a prominent landmark of downtown Helsinki, the Turku Central railway station blends in among the scenery and is hidden behind other buildings when viewed from the city centre. Because of this, it can be difficult for non-Turkuans to get their bearings around the railway station.
On 7 June 2010, the Turku Central railway station was officially renamed Turun päärautatieasema-Åbo centralstation (Turku main railway station, or Turku central railway station) in Finnish and Swedish, replacing the previous official name Turun rautatieasema-Åbo järnvägsstation (Turku railway station). The Finnish transport bureau use "Turku C" as a shorthand, and there were erroneous news reports that this shorthand would also be taken into official use. The Helsinki Central railway station was renamed in a similar manner.
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