Amsterdam–Arnhem railway

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Amsterdam–Arnhem railway
Status Operational
Locale Netherlands and Germany
Termini Amsterdam Centraal railway station
Arnhem railway station
Stations 23
Opened 1843 - 1856
Operator(s) Nederlandse Spoorwegen
Line length 118.6 km (73.7 mi)
Number of tracks 4 tracks (Amsterdam Bijlmer - Utrecht Centraal)
Double track (Amsterdam Centraal - Amsterdam Bijlmer,
Utrecht Centraal - Elten)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Electrification 1.5 kV DC Catenary
Operating speed 140 km/h (87 mph) (Amsterdam Centraal - Amsterdam Bijlmer)
160 km/h (99 mph) (Amsterdam Bijlmer - Utrecht Centraal)
140 km/h (87 mph) (Utrecht Centraal - Arnhem)
130 km/h (81 mph) (Arnhem - Elten)
Route map

The Amsterdam–Arnhem railway or Rhijnspoorweg is an important Dutch railway line, that connects Amsterdam with Utrecht and Arnhem, and continues into Germany.


The railway was opened in several stages by the Nederlandsche Rhijnspoorweg-Maatschappij (NRS) between 18 December 1843 and 15 February 1856, with construction starting in 1843. The line was electrified in 1938 between Amsterdam and Arnhem and in 1966 between Arnhem and Elten. The line has been heavily rebuilt between Amsterdam Bijmer Arena and Utrecht Centraal to increase its capacity, which started in 1999 and finished in 2008.


The line leaves Amsterdam in an easterly direction with the line to Amersfoort, which leaves at Amsterdam Muiderpoort, the line then continues in a southerly direction and shortly before arriving at Amsterdam Amstel, the metro lines 51, 53 and 54 operate between the line. Duivendrecht is a bi-level station with the Schiphollijn operating below. Freight lines from the Weesp direction join and the Utrecht Curve from Schiphol joins the line. At Amsterdam Holendrecht the metro lines 50 and 54 leave towards the east. The line continues travelling through the countryside and a few towns towards Utrecht, often running parallel to the Amsterdam–Rhine Canal. At Breukelen the line to Gouda leaves the line. On approaching Utrecht Centraal the lines from Rotterdam and Amersfoort join.

From Utrecht Centraal the line continues in an easterly direction, with the line from Hilversum joining and crossing over, with the line to 's-Hertogenbosch leaving southwards. 7 km (4.3 mi) east of Maarn the line to Rhenen leaves. At Ede-Wageningen the line from Amersfoort via Barneveld joins. Shortly before arriving at Arnhem the line from Nijmegen joins and after Arnhem Velperpoort the line to Zutphen heads north-east. At Zevenaar, the line to Winterswijk leaves in a north-easterly direction, while the freight Betuweroute from Rotterdam joins the line before continuing towards Germany. 4 km (2.5 mi) later the line crosses the Dutch-German border and continues towards Emmerich, where the railway becomes the Emmerich-Oberhausen railway and continues east.

Main stations[edit]

The main stations on the Rhijnspoorweg railway are:

Train services[edit]

The Rhijnspoorweg is used by the following passenger services:

  • International services along the whole line (Amsterdam - Frankfurt)
  • Intercity services between Amsterdam and Arnhem (Alkmaar - Maastricht/Heerlen, Den Helder - Nijmegen, Schiphol - Eindhoven/Nijmegen, Zwolle - Roosendaal)
  • Stoptrein services between Amsterdam and Zevenaar (Uitgeest - Rotterdam, Breukelen - Rhenen, Ede-Wageningen - Arnhem, Nijmegen - Zutphen, Arnhem - Winterswijk)

Train types[edit]

A wide variety of trains can be found regularly on the Rhijnspoorweg:

  • ICE 3M on the Amsterdam - Frankfurt service on the whole line.
  • NS DD-IRM on the Alkmaar - Maastricht/Heerlen service between Amsterdam Centraal and Utrecht Centraal, the Den Helder - Nijmegen service between Amsterdam Centraal and Arnhem, the Schiphol - Eindhoven service between Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA and Utrecht Centraal, Schiphol - Nijmegen service between Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA and Arnhem and the Zwolle - Roosendaal between Arnhem and Arnhem Velperpoort.
  • NS Koploper on the Zwolle - Roosendaal between Arnhem and Arnhem Velperpoort.
  • NS Sprinter on the Uitgeest - Rotterdam service between Amsterdam Centraal and Breukelen, the Breukelen - Rhenen service between Breukelen and Maarn, Ede-Wageningen - Arnhem service between Ede-Wageningen and Arnhem and Nijmegen - Zutphen services between Arnhem and Arnhem Velperpoort.
  • SLT on the Uitgeest - Rotterdam service between Amsterdam Centraal and Breukelen and the Breukelen - Rhenen service between Breukelen and Maarn
  • Syntus Buffel and Syntus LINT 41 on the Arnhem - Winterswijk service between Arnhem and Zevenaar.
  • Mat '64 on the Ede-Wageningen - Arnhem service.

There are also large numbers of freight trains operating along the line.