Verona Porta Nuova railway station
|Verona Porta Nuova|
|The station and city bus stop.|
|Address||Piazzale 25 Aprile, 6
|Owner||Rete Ferroviaria Italiana|
|Urban / long distance / airport|
Verona Porta Nuova is the main railway station of the Italian city of Verona near the city centre in the square of Piazzale 25 Aprile. It was originally opened in 1852, but was substantially rebuilt between 1910 and 1922. It was rebuilt again between 1946 and 1949 after being largely destroyed by allied bombing during World War II. The station serves a number of lines including to Milan, Venice, Bologna and the Brenner pass. It currently handles 25 million passengers annually. Work has recently begun in preparation for it being linked to the Milan–Verona high-speed railway (on which work is now beginning) and the Verona–Venice high-speed railway (on which planning is under way).
The first train arrived at Verona Porta Nuova station, in 1852, driven by the locomotive "Verona" on the new line from Venice and crossing the Adige river on a bridge that had just been completed. As early as 1853 it was possible to go from the station to Mantua via a single track line and in the same year work started in the station on the construction of the Brenner railway. The first station was built as a temporary wooden structure in 1851 but was replaced in 1852 by a small masonry building. This building has an odd shape, with part of its front further forward that the other and with unequal sides, one with eight arched openings, and the other with only three openings. At first the station was less important than Porta Vescovo station, which was near a major Austrian military camp. At the time Verona was one of the main military strongholds of Europe with a capacity of 120,000 troops. It was initially used only by the two of the three classes of passenger trains then in use in Italy: "omnibus" and "mixed" trains. It did not handle the fastest and most expensive "direct" trains or offer baggage services.
A line was opened to Sant'Antonio Mantovano north of the Mincio river near Mantua in 1853 and was connected through to Modena in 1874, where it connected with the line to Bologna. The line from Venice was extended to Brescia and Bergamo in 1854. The Brenner railway to Bolzano in 1859 and was extended to Innsbruck in 1867. The construction of these railways gave further impetus to the expansion of the massive Austrian defences in Verona until the transfer of Veneto to Italy as a result of the Third Italian War of Independence. The line to Rovigo opened in 1877. A more direct line to Bologna was opened in 1924.
With the absorption of Veneto into Italy in 1866 the Milan–Venice railway came, under the management of the Upper Italian Railways. The early 19th century station was no longer sufficient to handle traffic. It was to make Porta Nuova the main station. In 1900 it was temporarily enlarged with a central wooden building, while projects were being developing for the new station. Initially it was envisaged as including six platforms with several other tracks for the storage of rollingstock and for freight train operations. On 31 December 1915 a contract was signed for the building of work for with an estimated cost of 8 million lire, including a temporary building for passenger services.
Work on building the new station, designed by the architect Dini, began in 1910 and the station was opened in 1913, although in a preliminary form. The proposed building would be 114 metres long and 20 metres high, with a central dome and two smaller buildings on its side, with a canopy along its facade. The central section would have included the ticket office and luggage facility; there would have been a waiting room on the left was and a buffet the right. Offices would have occupied the second floor. However, the plans were not popular in Verona.
By early 1915 work was well advanced. The new freight facilities were already in operation, including the commissioning of a large goods yard and locomotive depot. The outbreak of World War I stopped work of the station and its opening was delayed until 22 March 1922. Its interior was decorated with mosaics by the master mosaic artist Amedeo Mantellato of Venice. In 1920s a connection was built between the Brenner line and the goods yard, while in 1930s a new depot for locomotives was built. Electrification of the lines was completed in 1941.
The station was partially destroyed by bombing during World War II. The first isolated bombing raid of the station was carried out by a formation of four aircraft on 21 October 1940 and consisted of cluster bombs and incendiaries. In total, the city suffered twenty bombing raids. The hardest attacks on the railway station and the city were on 4 and 28 January 1945. Eventually the station was rendered unusable.
The station was then rebuilt on the same site to a design by the architect Roberto Narducci, with reconstruction beginning in September 1946. The new station, aesthetically very different from the original, though structurally similar, was completed in March 1949. In the building many types of marble from Verona were used, covering an area of 4,000 m²; the floors were laid out with mosaics composed of ceramic tiles and the furniture was installed that was designed to harmonise with the building.
The new station carried over from the previous station a gap between its elevated platforms and the level of the pedestrian areas outside the station. This peculiarity has forced services to be organised on two floors: on the ground floor there are services for business travellers and the public, while rail-related services are on the upper floor. The platforms have metal roofs in Art Nouveau style, even those that survived from the previous station, while the roofs of the central and two lateral buildings are made of reinforced concrete. The current station does not include any elements of historical and architectural heritage.
Verona Porta Nuova is used by about 68 thousand passengers each day, for a total of 25 million users annually, and it is the ninth busiest train station in Italy. The station area is the centre of the transport network, incorporating urban and suburban public transport: the complex is located near the major bus terminal of the Verona public transport company (“Azienda Trasporti Verona”, ATV) which connects Verona with towns in the provinces of Verona and the Veneto. In the future it will also probably connect to the town centre by trolleybus.
The Verona Porta Nuova station is built on several levels:
- the basement is occupied by Ferrovie dello Stato offices;
- the ground floor is composed of several buildings, including passenger services. The side next to the square is occupied by commercial activities and passenger services, while there are technical rooms and offices in the other buildings on the west side;
- the platform level is used for passenger services;
- the first and second floor are occupied by offices.
The following services call at the station (incomplete):
- Night train (Thello) Paris - Milan - Verona - Padua - Venice
|Preceding station||Trenitalia||Following station|
toward Paris-Gare de Lyon
The station was included in the program of rehabilitation of the main Italian stations, carried out by Grandi Stazioni, a subsidiary of FS. It must be renovated under the guidelines for the to the Milan–Verona high-speed railway (on which work is now beginning) and the Verona–Venice high-speed railway (on which planning is under way). The area managed by Grandi Stazioni, extends over an area of 127,500 m², with buildings occupying 22,840 m². Of these, 2730 m² will be involved in the first phase of renovation.
- History of rail transport in Italy
- List of railway stations in Veneto
- Rail transport in Italy
- Railway stations in Italy
- Facchinelli, L. (1995). La ferrovia Verona-Brennero. Storia della linea e delle stazioni nel territorio (The Verona–Bologna railway, history of the line and its stations) (in Italian). Bolzano: Athesia. pp. 86–88.
- "Chronological overview of the opening of railway lines from 1839 to 31 December 1926" (in Italian). Trenidicarta.it. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
- Facchinelli, L. (1995). La ferrovia Verona-Brennero. Storia della linea e delle stazioni nel territorio (The Verona–Bologna railway, history of the line and its stations) (in Italian). Bolzano: Athesia. pp. 89–96.
- Kalla-Bishop, P. M. (1971). Italian Railways. Newton Abbott, Devon, England: David & Charles. p. 113. ISBN 0-7153-5168-0.
- Facchinelli, L. (1995). La ferrovia Verona-Brennero. Storia della linea e delle stazioni nel territorio (The Verona–Bologna railway, history of the line and its stations) (in Italian). Bolzano: Athesia. pp. 97–98.
- Priante, G. (2006). L'Arena e Verona: 140 anni di storia (The Arena and Verona: 140 years of history) (in Italian). Verona: Athesis. p. 99.
- "Verona Porta Nuova". Italy’s major stations. Ferrovie dello Stato. Retrieved 22 January 2010.
Media related to Verona Porta Nuova railway station at Wikimedia Commons