Dortmund–Enschede railway

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Locale North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany and the Netherlands
Line number
  • 2111 (Dortmund–Dortmund-Eving)
  • 2100 (Dortmund-Eving–Gronau)
  • 2014 (Gronau–Gronau border)
Line length 103 km (64 mi)
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Operating speed 140 km/h (87.0 mph) (maximum)
Route number 412
Route map
line from Hengelo
(connecting track dismantled)
53.6 Enschede
(connecting track dismantled)
57.7 Enschede De Eschmarke
59.4 Glanerbrug
Gronau borderNL / D
Gronau (Westf)
Line to Münster
94.5 VEW Gronau siding
91.9 Epe (Westf)
87.1 Lasterfeld
Former line from Enschede Süd
Ahaus nuclear storage siding
former line from Burgsteinfurt
80.6 Ahaus
Former line to Borken
72.9 Legden
68.2 Rosendahl-Holtwick
Line from Lutum, line from Münster
61.0 Coesfeld (Westf)
58.3 Coesfeld (Westf) town siding
Former Baumberge Railway to Borken
Line to Dorsten
55.3 Lette (Kr Coesfeld)
51.2 Merfeld(now siding)
45.0 Dülmen Ost(formerly Dülmen DGE)
former connecting line to Dülmen (low level)
Dülmen (interchange station, high level)
  Haltern–Münster line
former connecting line from Dülmen (low level)
37.9 Ondrup
32.4 Lüdinghausen
26.1 Selm (Kr Lüdinghausen)(former station)
24.6 Selm-Beifang
22.0 Bork (Westf)
20.4 Bork (Westf) siding(Bundeswehr)
14.9 Lünen Nord
Line from Münster
13.9 Lünen Hbf(Keilbahnhof)
Connecting line to Lünen Süd
Lünen Süd junction–Horstmar line
Connecting line from Horstmar junction
10.5 Preußen
8.1 Dortmund-Derne
5.4 Dortmund-Kirchderne
to Dortmund-Obereving
Dortmund rail freight bypass
to Dortmund-Scharnhorst
3.1 Dortmund-Hoesch
Dortmund-Eving(former station)
(new route since 1904)
0.0 to Dortmund Hbf
Dortmund–Hamm line
(former route until 1998)
0.6 Dortmund Ost(formerly Dortmund DGE)
Former line to Dortmund Süd

Source: German railway atlas[1]

The Dortmund–Enschede railway is an international railway connecting the eastern Ruhr district of Germany to Enschede in the Netherlands, which was built by the Dortmund-Gronau-Enschede Railway Company.


The Dortmund-Gronau-Enschede Railway Company (German: Dortmund-Gronau-Enscheder Eisenbahn-Gesellschaft, DGE) began to build its line from Dortmund DGE station (later called Dortmund East station) to the east of the central city. As a result, its line had to cross the original Dortmund–Hamm trunk line of the Cologne-Minden Railway Company (Cöln-Mindener Eisenbahn-Gesellschaft, CME).

The first section to Lünen Nord station was opened on 25 November 1874 for passenger trains; the first goods trains ran a week later. Six months later, the line reached Dulmen, where it crossed the Wanne-Eickel–Hamburg line (also a CME line) to reach Dülmen DGE station (later called Dülmen Ost (east) station), which was located north-west of the CME station.

The other parts of the line were opened at short intervals after each other. It reached Coesfeld on 1 August 1875 and Gronau on 30 September 1875, when the Münster–Enschede line of the Royal Westphalian Railway Company (KWE) was also opened to the station. The last section to Enschede in the Netherlands was built in cooperation with the KWE and opened on 15 October 1875 and subsequently operated jointly.

With the opening of Duisburg–Quakenbrück railway by the Rhenish Railway Company four years later, Coesfeld station became an interchange station. At the beginning of the 20th century, the Empel-Rees–Münster line (the eastern part of which is called the Baumberge Railway) was opened, which also intersected at Coesfelder Station, making it the major railway junction of western Münsterland.

Temporary closure[edit]

The Gronau–Enschede section was closed on 27 September 1981 for passenger and freight services. After lengthy negotiations, the cross-border passenger services were resumed in 2001.

Current situation[edit]

The section from Dortmund to Lünen is double track, electrified and classified as a main line.

The section from Lünen to the border at Gronau is single track, non-electrified and has been classified as a branch line since 2007. This section is operated as part of Deutsche Bahn’s Münster-Westphalia Regional Network, based in Munster.


The route is now served hourly by the RB 51 (Westmünsterland-Bahn) Regionalbahn service. Trains pass each other in Lüdinghausen, Coesfeld and Epe. Because of the single-track, services operating in the opposite direction and departing on the symmetry minute delay services by several minutes. RB 50 (Der Lüner) also runs hourly between Dortmund and Lünen towards Münster.

Services on the line were operated from 12 December 2004 until 10 December 2012 by Prignitzer Eisenbahn, operating with modern Bombardier Talent diesel multiple units. Previously services had been operated by DB Regio NRW with class 624 diesel multiple units and DB Regio Westfalen won the most recent contract and has operated it since 11 December 2012.[2]

External links[edit]

NRW railway archive of André Joost:


  1. ^ Eisenbahnatlas Deutschland (German railway atlas). Schweers + Wall. 2009. ISBN 978-3-89494-139-0. 
  2. ^ "SPNV-Wettbewerb Nordrhein-Westfalen" (in German). Retrieved 16 January 2014.