Talk:Central station

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Clarification[edit]

What is the purpose of this page? Is it to try to establish the term "central station" in the English language as a generic term for "main station" (in which case why not just use "main station", if the article even needs to exist separately from Railway station?), or is to list stations which are called something resembling "central station" or "main station" in various languages, or is it to list stations which actually are the main station in various places?

I'm not sure that Gainsborough Central railway station and Berlin Hbf really have much in common, other than being stations. The German-language "Hauptbahnhof" is better (and more commonly) translated in to English as "main station"; I have certainly come across "XYZ main station" used in DB's onboard announcements in English. It is not uncommon for towns to have a large station outside their "old" town, and a smaller station in a more central location (eg Heidelberg) - in these cases, which one gets listed here? Wheeltapper (talk) 23:38, 12 June 2012 (UTC)

Definitely not the latter of those three, since it lists Hounslow Central tube station but only two stations in France which have "Centre" (no Bordeaux St. Jean, Montpellier St. Roche etc which are actually main stations). The lists on this page amount to no more than random trivia, "stations with names ending in 'main' or 'central' in various languages" - in the Czech Republic list you can find Mořkov hlavní trať, which is a little station in a small town on one line served only by local stopping services, so is only in this list because it contains the word hlavní, but not e.g. Zlín střed, which is by any reasonable definition a central station. - filelakeshoe 13:36, 31 July 2012 (UTC)
Slovakia: "Central stations in other cities, such as [...] Banská Bystrica, are recognised by having no suffix". The station called "Banská Bystrica" is a rather more substantial facility than Banská Bystrica mesto, which is just a single platform. But Banská Bystrica Mesto is a short walk from the city centre, and when I was there recently seemed to have more passengers getting on and off, while the Banská Bystrica station is a bit of a trek. So which is the "central" station....?! Wheeltapper (talk) 18:52, 31 July 2012 (UTC)
Locals still call these stations "hlavná"/"hlavní" - last weekend I was in Svitavy and people called the station on the mainline hlavní to distinguish it from Svitavy zastávka. I guess in UK English usage people use "mainline station" for this, definitely not "central" - filelakeshoe 08:28, 1 August 2012 (UTC)
lol, check out Koblenz City Centre Station and Koblenz Central Station. Unbelievable, why don't we just move Berlin Südkreuz to Berlin South Cross and be done with WP:NOR? Was there actually a centralised discussion on all this? Get the feeling there should be (note, btw, that Zürich HB is still in its rightful place even after a RM). - filelakeshoe 13:47, 1 August 2012 (UTC)
 !! I'm waiting for someone to try moving Pennsylvania Station (New York City) or Exeter St Davids railway station to "Central" station names. Where would be the best place to trigger a wider discussion, before the invention of new names gets completely out of hand? Is there a possibility that people (person?) favouring the invention of new names might be starting with obscure stations, then using those articles' existence to bolster support for inventing new names for more significant ones? Wheeltapper (talk) 15:31, 1 August 2012 (UTC)
Well it started at talk:Berlin Hauptbahnhof with that one RM which was then blown out of proportion as unilateral consensus to move every Hbf article to "Central Station". I'm not sure where the best place would be. Probably an RFC. - filelakeshoe 21:37, 1 August 2012 (UTC)

Former Soviet Union is the focus of the term usage[edit]

ALL Soviet cities and towns had a central passenger station colloquially called vokzal (except for Moscow and 2-3 other large cities that have more than one vokzal). The word itself originates from German where I suppose the tradition of the central station began originally. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 93.72.233.80 (talk) 19:12, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Most sources I've seen - including ru:Вокзал - seem to agree that the Russian word vokzal comes indirectly from Vauxhall in south London; see Vauxhall for discussion of the theories as to how. Does Germany really have a tradition of a central station as such? Railways predate Germany as a unified country. I believe Berlin originally had a London/Paris/Moscow style collection of stations [1], while Hamburg Hbf is what the North Americans might call a Union station. Wheeltapper (talk) 20:50, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

Second and third impression[edit]

Second impression of this article is that it raises the "is this article a disambiguation page, a dicdef or what?" question, which is never a good thing.
Third impression; is WP:PRIMARY of "central station" really railways?? if "a central station" was to pass WP:NOTABILITY you'd expect some hits in Google Books. But the concept of "a central station" + railway, garners almost nothing. "A central station is" almost always refers in Google Books to an Alarm Monitoring Center.
Anyway, the Germany section really needs to be reverted to the real world, even if that means used piped links. In ictu oculi (talk) 13:55, 31 August 2012 (UTC)

Real world (part 94)[edit]

I've just got back from Germany. Automated station announcements in English said "X Hauptbahnhof", traincrew announcements in English said either Hauptbahnhof or sometimes main station seemingly at random (eg saying a train would call at "... X Hauptbahnhof and Colonia [sic] main station"). Wheeltapper (talk) 21:31, 25 September 2012 (UTC)

Why[edit]

Is there any point in having Croatia, Czech Republic, Portugal, Slovenia, Switzerland and so on on the list for the sole purpose of saying they have few if any stations called Central? Wheeltapper (talk) 22:14, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Especially if the stations actually called "central" (Zlín střed, Trutnov střed...) aren't even on said list. What's the point of this article again? Do we even know yet? - filelakeshoe 10:57, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Removal of links to central stations in German-speaking countries[edit]

An editor has removed all links to central stations in German speaking countries on the basis that their term "Hauptbahnhof" means main station. Whilst this is a literal translation and is not strictly wrong, translation is about finding the best equivalent term, not the most literal one. In English, "central station" is used overwhelming to refer to the principal station of a town or city, both as a generic term (try googlehits or google books; it is 10 times more common) and as a proper station name i.e. "Foo Central Station" is very common; "Foo Main Station" is rare. My proposal is to re-insert the station links, but include an explanatory paragraph. --Bermicourt (talk) 14:33, 24 November 2012 (UTC)

  • Well, I think that gets at the main purpose of this article. I can't tell if it's supposed to be a dismabiguation page; it's got too much text for that. At the same time I don't see a need for an article explaining that many cities have a primary train station at the city center, which may or may not have "Central" in its name. The usage "Central station" isn't all that common in North America, either as a formal part of the name or as a descriptor. Most of the cases listed derive from either the New York Central Railroad or Illinois Central Railroad. If we're claiming "Central station" as the generic term for a primary station then yes Hauptbahnhof is the equivalent, but I don't see what a list gets us. The German Wikipedia (see de:Hauptbahnhof) has a nice explanatory article, but no list. Mackensen (talk) 14:50, 24 November 2012 (UTC)
    • Central stations (i.e. those whose names include the word "Central") aren't all that common in Great Britain, either; and those that do exist (I think that there are about thirty out of about 2500 stations nationwide) aren't necessarily the main station for the city or town; and several are no more "central" than other stations in the same settlement. The term "Central" is really just a disambiguator, and is not universal - we have three main stations in Birmingham, for example, and none are named Birmingham Central. Manchester also has three main stations - it used to have more, and Manchester Central is one of those that has closed. Of those that do exist, Liverpool Central has only local services - long distance trains all go to Liverpool Lime Street; Wrexham Central is tiny - it has one train an hour on just one route, serving no large towns at all. About the only truly important "Central" stations are Cardiff Central, Glasgow Central, Milton Keynes Central and Southampton Central. --Redrose64 (talk) 15:34, 24 November 2012 (UTC) amended Redrose64 (talk) 07:53, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Collins German Dictionary translates Hauptbahnhof as "main or central station." So "central station" is certainly a correct translation. Perhaps some editors assume that the word "central" refers to the city center. But this is not where the name comes from historically. Back in the Railway Age, many cities had several stations, and one of these would be located more centrally than the others. Central Station/central station is far more common that Main Station/main station, as you can see on this this ngram. Capitalized "Main Station" flatlines on the ngram, which suggests that very few stations are referred to as "Foo Main Station." Kauffner (talk) 11:21, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
  • In the English-speaking world "Central station" means no more or less than "a station whose owners have decided to call it Central, rather than something else". It certainly does not mean "the main station". Perhaps we need a page "main stations in cities", where we can include Hauptbahnhofs, Unions, Victorias, Lime Streets, CSTs, Paragons and whatever else? If we are going to add all main-but-not-actually-called-central stations to this list, how do we decide what to include - do we include Brussels Midi, as it is the main station, but exclude Brussels-Central railway station because it is merely called Central (presumably SNCB forgot to check with Wikipedia before picking a name!). How do we deal with towns where the centrally-located station and the main station are quite separate, and neither one is called a name which directly translates as "xxx Central station"? Do we include every single station which is the only one in the place it serves, as it is the main station by default? Wheeltapper (talk) 13:05, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
    • We can just translate the station's name, whatever it is. Translation is not a black art. Whether the station is centrally located, how many stations serve a city, and which one busiest really have nothing to do with it. Kauffner (talk) 14:08, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
Translation might not be a black art, but there is still the Hbf question - whether to use a literal, conventional and unambiguous translation, or an allegedly equivalent term which requires lots of discussion to try to work out what exactly it means, along with explanations to help people who don't follow Wikipedia talk pages. Have we actually established which if any English-speaking areas use "central station" for stations which are neither named or physically "central"? I take an interest in railways, and it is not something I have ever come across beyond a few Wikipedians. Whether a station is a "main" one is surely a practical question, rather than a legalistic one. Counting published references to "Main Station" won't help, because the British (etc) tradition is to give stations specific names. Wheeltapper (talk) 17:13, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
  • The difficulty with this article is that, whereas other countries have a clear and defined term, like Hauptbahnhof (or Centrale) for a principal station, we English-speakers only have this rather loose term "central station" which has neither a clear definition nor universal usage. I couldn't find it in either of my railway dictionaries. But then, neither could I find "main station". It seems to me there are at least 2 options:
    • Change central station to describe purely its usage in English-speaking countries and other countries that have a similarly loose term. Create a separate article, main station, which covers countries that have a term which is precisely defined to mean a principal station. Problem is: we don't really use "main station" in English, so it's a bit artificial, and the distinction between a main and central station is blurry.
    • Tidy up the existing article get across the valid points we have been making and having separate sections on usage in the English-speaking world and usage in other countries, making clear how they use their equivalent word. --Bermicourt (talk) 15:44, 25 November 2012 (UTC) (P.S. where did that extra bullet come from?!)
Do we actually need anything in the first place? As far as I can tell we don't have a page on Central Airports, listing Berlin Central Airport (Schoenefeld), London Central Airport (Heathrow), etc. We don't have pages on Victoria stations, London Road stations, or whatever. Renaming all the German "Main stations" as "Central" is far more artificial than rejecting the term "main station" just because few stations in the Anglophone world use it as a proper name. Wheeltapper (talk) 17:13, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
Nobody talks about central airports and the examples you quote - Berlin Central Airport and London Central Airport - are fictitious, unlike the many stations called "Foo Central Station" where that is their actual name. --Bermicourt (talk) 17:18, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
So is this article basically a disambiguation page for stations called "central"? Seems a bit pointless, if someone just types in central station expecting to be redirected to a particular station that person is a bit silly. None of those stations in Germany are actually called "Foo Central Station", they're actually called "Foo Hauptbahnhof". In the Czech Republic, the equivalent to Hbf is hlavní nádraží and "central" is střed. Ostrava and Trutnov have a hlavní and a střed so which do we designate to be the "central station"? The reason "the distinction between a main and central station is a bit blurry" is because phrases which freely translate to them mean different things in different parts of the world. - filelakeshoe 21:07, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
Does anyone outside Wikipedia talk about central stations as a generic thing meaning "main-but-maybe-not-central station" (rather than a proper name or reference to location), any more than they talk about central airports? Asking for the central station when you actually want the main station would be a pretty strange thing to do (and might leave you standing on a grim platform under Brussels wondering where your ICE, Thalys or Eurostar is!). Using "Foo Central Station" for a station called "Foo Somethingelse" is just as fictitious as Berlin Central airport - see all those Hauptbahnhofs (are there any examples other than Hauptbahnhofs of Wikipedia using invented rather than verifiable real names for stations?). FWIW, I can find a handful of online uses of Berlin Central Airport to mean Templehof, so maybe we need to rename that article... Wheeltapper (talk) 21:26, 25 November 2012 (UTC)
  • Since the expression "central station" is vastly more common than "main station," someone must be using it. Langenscheidt's German-English Dictionary also translates Hauptbahnhof as "main or central station" (p. 146). Deutsche Welle uses "Bonn central station", "Kassel Central Station", "Dresden's central station", "Stuttgart's central station", and many more. Kauffner (talk) 04:16, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
    Yes, it is more common, possibly because it's a designation English speakers are more used to, but in UK usage it overwhelmingly means "the centrally located station" and not "the principal station". Thus to my British speaking ears, referring to Ostrava hl.n. as a "central station" is insane. BTW, the Kassel link you gave uses "main station". - filelakeshoe 10:19, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
The translation of "Foo Hauptbahnhof" as "Foo Central Station" has much more logic to it as in that case "Central Station" is the nearest English equivalent and it is a nonsense to translate "Bahnhof" as "Station" but leave readers floundering over the meaning of "Hauptbahnhof". The question of the use of "central station" as a generic term is much more relevant and needs sourcing. I'm sure there's an article around it, but I'm not sure we have it right yet. --Bermicourt (talk) 07:23, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
The problem is that there is in reality no all-purpose English equivalent - were a Hbf to be in the US it might be called Union or Grand Central, were it to be in Britain it might be called Victoria. Who can ever know? Bahnhof is simply German word for [railway] station, so there is no nonsense about that, any more than it is nonsense to call a Flughafen an airport. But Foo Hauptbahnhof is a proper name, just as London King's Cross is a proper name. Why would readers be floundering because a German station has a German name? Wheeltapper (talk) 14:59, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Yes. Brits buy tickets from London to Paris Gare du Nord without trouble - no need for Paris North Station there. Incidentally, this one is named "du Nord" for the same reason that some British stations are named "Central" - not because it's in the north of Paris, but because it served the Chemin de Fer du Nord. --Redrose64 (talk) 15:24, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
@Kauffner: the expression "central station" might be vastly more common than "main station", but that's when it's being used a descriptive term. The first sentence of this article states "Central station is a common element in the names of railway stations", so I would expect it to be about stations whose names include the word "Central" regardless of how important they are. That is the sense I was using when I posted at 15:34, 24 November 2012.
"Hauptbahnhof", literally translated, means "head railway yard"; that's "head" as in "main" or "important", not as in a part of the body. More loosely, we can say "main railway station", so it's clear to me that when a dictionary states "main or central station", that dictionary is using "central" as a description, not as a name. --Redrose64 (talk) 07:53, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

@Bernicourt, I'd suggest please refrain from reversing Wheeltapper's completely rational removal of the German stations. If this article was going to serve any useful purpose (which I'm not sure it doesn't but the purpose isn't clear) it could discuss, meaningfully, the difference between for example a Hauptbahnhof and FOO Stadtmitte, or FOO hlavní nádraží and FOO střed. Or indeed any of the other countries where the lumping together as "central station" (no caps) doesn't help. It isn't just Germany and Czech Republic, almost every country has some towns where the "main station" is not the "central station" - as you'd expect with lack of space/convenience with modern urban centres. I would urge Wheeltapper to stick the Talk:Berlin Hauptbahnhof RM back in and get the actual article titles back to what is actually found in English sources like Lonely Planet and Frommers, then maybe this odd sourceless Am-I-an-article-am-I-a-list-am-I-a-disambiguation-page-what-am-I would fix itself. In ictu oculi (talk) 09:32, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

I'm pretty sure that in Germany, there are some criteria over whether a station can be designated as a Hbf. In the Czech Republic a city has one of its stations designated hl.n. if there is more than one station (an actual station, not a halt - another distinction the UK rail system no longer really makes) in the city, which is why there is a Prostějov hl.n. but České Budějovice station (which is a main and central station) is just České Budějovice. If the crusade to push use of "central station" in English stopped the article could include information like this and actually be useful. - filelakeshoe 10:19, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
@Wheeltapper: "Bahnhof" and "Hauptbahnhof" are both generic and proper names, to wit the de.wiki article on "Hauptbahnhof" which is clearly generic. And the dictionaries back that up. People will flounder because they don't understand German words; that's why we've sensibly translated them into their nearest English equivalent. "Foo Main Station" would be acceptable too, but it's just not a common construct in English.
@Redrose: Of course "Haupt" means "head" or "main", but we call a "Hauptmann" a captain, not a "main man"! When translating, the aim is to find the nearest equivalent term, not the most literal.
@in ictu oculi: Many sources translate "Hauptbahnhof" as either "Central Station" or "Main Station".
@Filelakeshoe: no, it's just what the DB decides. Please don't describe an opposing view as a "crusade"; it doesn't get us anywhere. What we need is a consensus.
In sum, I don't disagree the article needs reshaping and, possibly, another creating. The question is how best to do it in a way that is acceptable to most of us. If it was entitled "Central or main stations" it would be easy, but Wikipedia doesn't really like that sort of title! --Bermicourt (talk) 18:02, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
"Hauptbahnhof" indeed means "main station", and is generic when not part of a proper name. But Foo Hauptbahof is the actual name of a specific thing, and is no different to Foo Messe, Foo Nord, Foo Parkway or Foo o'th'Barn. There are lots of crosses in the world, but only one London King's Cross station, and millions of people manage to live quite happily without ever knowing which king had a cross. If we do invent a new name, the first thing we have to do is explain the real name, so as not to confuse readers! And if we have to invent new names for Hauptbahhofs should we invent new names for all other stations? Then what about the "Imperial Parliament" or the "Street of June 17th", which are probably of more interest than a railway station? Wheeltapper (talk) 20:04, 26 November 2012 (UTC)
Funnily enough the German article is "Bahnhof King’s Cross"; because they have understood the difference between the proper name element and the generic element. The translation of Foo Hauptbahnhof as "Foo Central Station" (leaving aside the debate about "main" or "central") is no different from the convention that sees Schloss Celle translated as "Celle Castle", Mecklenburgische Bucht as "Bay of Mecklenburg" and Lichtenhainer Wasserfall as "Lichtenhain Waterfall". It's very common translator's practice: keep the proper element, translate the generic. But this is a red herring. The issue here is how do we sort this article out? I suggest 2 options:
1. We focus the article on usage of "central station" and those countries that we agree use the same type of terminology e.g. Centrale. That we could all, I think, agree on.
2. We then have a discussion at WikiProject Trains about what to do with those countries that use an equivalent of "main station". E.g. do we include them under a separate section titled something like "main station" or do we create a separate article? What should it be called? Or do we create sections at train station to cover it (with a link to the central station article)? --Bermicourt (talk) 20:34, 26 November 2012 (UTC)

Do we rename stadtbahn stops?[edit]

The article on "Cologne Central Station" now talks about "the underground stations Dom/Hbf and Breslauer Platz/Hbf". If we are going to rename the Hauptbahnhof itself, should we not also rename the associated stadtbahn stops? Presumably one would be "Cathedral/Central Station", but should we include the l-slash in "Wrocław Square/Central Station" or not? Wheeltapper (talk) 00:08, 15 December 2012 (UTC)

Nah, for some reason this cosmic naming convention only applies to main stations. At least that's what I assume. - filelakeshoe 00:22, 15 December 2012 (UTC)
I assume this is a criticism of the existing use of "Central Station" rather than a serious proposal to extend it well beyond its normal use in English. But the current situation with Hauptbahnhof highlighted here, has a parallel that seems to be accepted: we normally translate Bahnhof Foo as "Foo [railway] station", but tend to leave the form Foo-er Bahnhof untranslated - see Hamburger Bahnhof and Dresdner Bahnhof. I don't know why, but suspect it is because translation would confuse rather than clarify. We usually drop the adjectival -er ending in English, but that would result in calling them "Hamburg Station" and "Dresden Station", which would obviously be misleading. We won't find a perfect solution sadly. --Bermicourt (talk) 17:02, 15 December 2012 (UTC)
It is a serious question. Whatever problem is supposedly caused by using the name which is used by English speakers for the station itself surely exists for related tram stops? Wheeltapper (talk) 01:31, 16 December 2012 (UTC)
For what it's worth: whilst I feel that the translation of Hauptbahnhof as "Central Station" aids clarity for non-German speakers and is widely used in the literature, I can't see a similarly clear translation of Hamburger Bahnhof or, in your example, Dom/Hbf, which is also widely supported by the sources. Jolly frustrating! --Bermicourt (talk) 08:46, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Merge from/to union station[edit]

No consensus to move. --kelapstick(bainuu) 15:09, 2 August 2014 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

It may not need much discussion to close/remove this but it was raised in the deletion discussion, so a section is opened here in case. In ictu oculi (talk) 04:57, 13 May 2013 (UTC)

  • oppose "Union station" is one of the few terms here with a definite meaning: a joint station serving a group of railroads. Mangoe (talk) 12:07, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose As I understand it, a "union station" is an American term for what in Great Britain was known as a "joint station". We did have quite a few stations which were co-owned by two or more railways; but not all central stations were joint stations, and not all joint stations were central stations. "Central station" appears to have three different interpretations: (i) The main or principal station for a town; (ii) a station which is centrally located in a town; (iii) a station which has the word "central" in its name. Cases (i) and (ii) can apply to a joint station but neither is a prerequisite - they varied in importance from the major, like Carlisle Citadel or Manchester London Road down to the minor, like Abersychan and Talywain or Verney Junction, and were no more nor less centrally-located than any non-joint station in a town of similar size. Nottingham had three railway companies serving it, and two principal stations: the more important of these, Nottingham, was used by one company; the less important, Nottingham Victoria, was jointly-owned by the other two. Case (iii) is easier, if we substitute the word "joint" for "central"; a few, such as Aberdeen Joint, had that word in their name, but such cases are rare. --Redrose64 (talk) 15:15, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose because it has a different meaning and is specific to the USA. However thanks to IIO for flagging it up, because I think we need to restructure that part of this article. Firstly the section on union stations is currently under "North America" and needs moving to the "United States" subsection. Secondly, it should be preceded by a section on the use of "central station" in the US. I will draft some words for others, more knowledgeable, to hack about as necessary. Hope that helps. Bermicourt (talk) 15:39, 14 May 2013 (UTC)
  • Okay, then Oppose per consensus. In ictu oculi (talk) 07:54, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

A data point[edit]

For what it is worth as an example of usage, The Guardian website had an article yesterday about stations which discusses "Brussels central station".[2] This is clearly talking about the station which is called (and is) Centraal/Centrale (=translates to "Central"); it is not using "central" to mean the city's main station (which is elevated rather than underground, and which English speakers generally call Midi, whatever the Flemish might think about this!). Wheeltapper (talk) 18:17, 26 July 2013 (UTC)

Hamburg Hbf[edit]

A claim that Hamburg Hauptbahnhof used to be called Hamburg Centralbahnhof has been added, with the source being Benrath, H. (1901) Die neuen Eisenbahnanlagen und der Centralbahnhof in Hamburg. However that publication date would appear to be before the station in question was built; work began in 1902 and it opened in 1906. Do we have solid evidence that the station was ever named Hamburg Centralbahnhof? I don't have access to the booklet in question (is there an accessible online version?). The German Wikipedia doesn't appear to mention a change of name anywhere? Wheeltapper (talk) 20:50, 29 July 2013 (UTC)

I suspect the work was about plans for the new central station in Hamburg to be built. Just google it for several online links. And as further evidence, here's a link to a contemporary postcard with the caption "Hamburg. Der neue Centralbahnhof". And here's another one. Here's a 1904 lithograph of the period with the title "Hamburgs Zentral-Bahnhof" by the artist Karl Müller. And take a look at the German Wiki article: there's a section called Zentralbahnhof. They seemed to use the names Centralbahnhof and Zentralbahnhof interchangeably. --Bermicourt (talk) 22:10, 29 July 2013 (UTC)
This view from 1906 - the year it opened - says Hamburg Hauptbahnhof.[3] The German Wiki article says "eines Zentralbahnhofes in Hamburg" - not "Hamburg Centralbahnhof" - and "der neue zentrale Hamburger Hauptbahnhof"; that is calling it Hauptbahnhof, describing it as central (Hamburg Hbf is central). Long-ago proposals for the future didn't necessarily ever actually happen (it would be a big mistake to base an article on Hull's stations on the basis of this [4]). Do you have access to the book, or just Google's evidence of the book's existence? The 1901 postcard is from before work had even started to build it, and the 1904 drawings are well before completion. The building also looks rather different (with elevated tracks) - is it definitely showing the same thing as was actually built? I think we need solid evidence, rather than relying on inferring from things published before the station actually existed. Wheeltapper (talk) 23:38, 29 July 2013 (UTC)
Actually what would be useful would be something like a Prussian state railways timetable from, say, 1910. I'll see what I can dig up. --Bermicourt (talk) 07:29, 30 July 2013 (UTC)
Asking on the German Wikipedia finds the answer - your images show Hamburg Dammtor station, not Hamburg Hauptbahnhof.
So, how do we handle these sources? Should we make Hamburg Central Station a disambiguation page, with the Hauptbahnhof becoming Hamburg Central station (Hauptbahnhof) and the Hamburg Dammtor station page becoming something like Hamburg Central station (Dammtor) or Hamburg Central station (Embankment Gate)? Stuttgart also poses a problem, with the C/Zentralbahnhof being something different to the Hauptbahnhof. I think Karlsruhe might be similar, though I can't pin down what - if anything - was the name of the defunct central station which the distinctly un-central Hauptbahnhof replaced. Wheeltapper (talk) 22:03, 30 July 2013 (UTC)
Well done for finding that out.
Re un-central stations. Remember that "central" doesn't necessarily mean central to the city, it could mean central to the rail network. Bermicourt (talk) 08:10, 31 July 2013 (UTC)
Any evidence for that, or is it just an assertion? We need reliable sources. How would "central to the rail network" be defined? (should Birmingham New Street railway station be listed as Birmingham Central station?) Wheeltapper (talk) 08:36, 31 July 2013 (UTC)
From my non-native speaker's point of view Hamburg Central Station should definitely be a disambiguation page (just as Prague Central Station and Belgrade Central Station are, just the times/years being different); Hauptbahnhof should become Hamburg Hauptbahnhof. It is not only a question of WP:UE, but also of WP:NPOV. At some other discussion I have learned that decisions should be made by strength of arguments, not by number of votes (which would apply to google counts as well IMO); And Dammtor being the original Zentralbahnhof is quite a strong argument. --Kleeblatt187 (talk) 20:05, 1 August 2013 (UTC)
It would be incorrect to have Hamburg Central Station as a dab page, although Hauptbahnhof supporters would love it. There is only one station called "Hamburg Central" in English and it's the Hbf. There is no evidence at present that Dammtor was once referred to as Hamburg Central and, even if it were, it is certainly no contender for primary topic. I'm no expert on Eastern European languages, but suspect that Prague Central and Belgrade Central have been dabbed to defend the presently unintelligible article titles in the native language. I would be very surprised if the alleged links on those dab pages were both equally referred to in English by their dab names. Perhaps someone would like to produce evidence that they are? Bermicourt (talk) 21:39, 1 August 2013 (UTC)
So those images are only evidence if they support your attempt to change English usage? There is no station in Hamburg which is commonly called Hamburg Central in English, any more than there is a street in the Free and Guild City of Hamma Castle called the Ropewalk, pubs selling Alster Water and a sports team called St Paul AFC - or a station in Birmingham called Birmingham Central station[5]. The Prague stations, like every European station in Wikipedia other than the German Hbfs which were changed to "central", are listed under the common names used by English speakers: see the references to České Dráhy (=Czech Railways), Deutsche Bahn (=German Railway), Today's Railways Europe, Railway Gazette International, Thomas Cook, Rough Guides and Lonely Planet. Trying rebrand stations as foreign-word free hits the problem of violating WP:English, WP:commonname and WP:OR, and in the case of Prague, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe etc creates the significant new problem of what to do with a separate station called Central or which is central. The problem is that you are trying to define English as "not foreign" or "what would Britons do", rather than follow what English speakers use. Wheeltapper (talk) 15:31, 2 August 2013 (UTC)

Names of German stations[edit]

The names in the Germany section should reflect the actual article titles as in other sections. Please do not keep changing them to Hauptbahnhof - that will result in an edit war that we need to avoid. We have had the wearisome debate about Hbf and Central Station several times and, for now at least, the article titles remain in English. --Bermicourt (talk) 08:10, 31 July 2013 (UTC)

So how would we distinguish between stations called Central in the real world and stations called Central in Wikipedia, where they are different things? Which is Hamburg Central - Dammtor (following the sources) or Hauptbahnhof? Wheeltapper (talk) 08:36, 31 July 2013 (UTC)
There is no issue here. Hamburg Hbf is Hamburg Central on 893,000 websites in the real world and on Wikipedia. For example the Hamburg Messe (International Exhibition Centre) says this: "If you arrive at Hamburg Central Station (Hauptbahnhof), it is only one station from there to Dammtor station..." So Dammtor is the current name; Hamburg Central is Hamburg Hbf. "Centralbahnhof" as the article explains clearly is a historic name. But all that is a digression from the point I raised: i.e. that we should be using the actual article titles, not what we might like them to be. --Bermicourt (talk) 17:04, 31 July 2013 (UTC)
P.S. Of course, as usual, Germany's national rail carrier and the owner of the station call it "Hamburg Central" on their English website, e.g. at pages for airport connexions, their rail passes and their weekend tickets, as do the usual host of authoritative sources from British and German travel companies to businesses in Hamburg, etc., etc. Bermicourt (talk) 17:13, 31 July 2013 (UTC)
Please be careful not to misrepresent sources: the Dutch/Irish/US website Germanrailpasses.com is not "Germany's national rail carrier" - although it does say that people can get assistance at Hamburg Hbf! I note that you are having to rely on airport information, rather than railway information - although even Hamburg Airport's website says: "S1 operates every 10 minutes between Hamburg Airport and Hamburg’s central railway station, Hauptbahnhof".
I've just asked DB's planner for trains from "Hamburg Central station" - it doesn't know of anywhere called that, so asks if I mean "Hamburg Cafe Central (Gastronomie)". So I asked for Hamburg Central - it offers me something called "Mode Centrum, Hamburg", and suggest I start the trip by catching a bus then a train to "Hamburg Hbf". DB can offer me a lounge at "Hamburg Hbf", but doesn't know of a Hamburg Central. The Railteam Alliance (DB, SNCF, SNCB, Eurostar, NS Hispeed, ÖBB, SBB, plus Thalys and TGV Lyria) has an English page dedicated to Hamburg Hauptbahnhof.
The tourism section of the official city of Hamburg website hamburg.de also describes Dammtor as central (it uses the common names for the stations): "four long-distance rail stations - Hauptbahnhof (centre), Dammtor (centre), Altona (west) and Harburg (south)". Rough Guide and Cook's use Hauptbahnhof (obviously).
So in conclusion, "Central" is appears to be ambiguous for Hamburg. The common name, Hauptbahnhof, is not.
Should the former Posen Zentralbahnhof be on the list under Germany or Poland? Wheeltapper (talk) 21:12, 31 July 2013 (UTC)

Tidying up[edit]

Okay, Talk:Berlin Hauptbahnhof seems to demonstrate consensus, if short of total WP:SNOW for not counting "X's central station" as a name "X Central Station." Now something needs to be done about the mass undiscussed moves by User Kauffner. I have reverted Hamburg Central Station back to Hamburg Hauptbahnhof, mainly to see if a specimen station was redirect locked, it wasn't. WP:BRD refers to recent moves, but given the sockpuppeting, disruption, and willful misrepresentation of sources for "X's central station" as a name "X Central Station." a BOLD WP:MOVE is in order. The only question, mainly for User:Bermicourt is whether you require everyone go through the rigmarole of a bulk RM before restoring these moves. If there is a RM I suggest we pre-agree everybody gets a maximum 100-word limit on contributions.

One that does require an RM is Talk:Leipzig Hauptbahnhof which despite 4-2 support to restore was closed by a non-admin in favour of the undiscussed move. User:Wheeltapper, or someone else, do you want to do the honours and put that back in - keeping it short and sweet and notifying all previous participants. In ictu oculi (talk) 05:49, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

I'm not happy that the outcome of Talk:Berlin Hauptbahnhof is seen as a green light to all other moves. It is only the first time there has been agreement to switch back to the usage Hbf - Leipzig and Nuremberg failed as did Berlin earlier. Of course, Kauffner who instigated the moves has now been blocked for other reasons, so a major player is out of the frame. Anyway, because these moves are clearly controversial, I reckon we need to approach this more scientifically this time before doing any more undiscussed moves - bulk or otherwise. Equally I think we're all weary of moving this debate from article to article - there are 122 German Hbf alone and we all have better things to do. I suggest an alternative approach this as follows:
  • We join forces to research all usage in authoritative English sources i.e. let's not be selective any more
  • We agree the criteria for assessment and iron out whether capitalization matters or not from a linguistic POV
  • We assess the relative %age e.g. of the different usages e.g. Foo Hauptbahnhof, "Foo Central Station" and "Foo Main Station"
  • We do this for a representative sample, e.g. Category 1 stations only
  • We draw our conclusions objectively and select the most appropriate one - this should not be contentious if we've agreed the criteria beforehand
  • We move all 122 articles to the chosen title format
This may take a bit of time, but will be quicker than letting the current situation drag on by repeatedly conducting RM's. I am willing to do this as objectively as I can regardless of the outcome and would ask others to be open minded too.

--Bermicourt (talk) 07:37, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

Hi. 122 articles? Did Kauffner seriously do 121 undiscussed moves? No, the RM multimove template will take 14 moves. I suggest User:Wheeltapper or User:Redrose64 or User:Filelakeshoe or whomsoever, anyway someone, pick 14 (one of which should be Leipzig) and we get it over with, then move the rest manually ( I just reverted Leoben Hauptbahnhof, could only find a single English reference. Presumably this is typical of the smaller stations ). Maybe 100 words max is too much. Perhaps 50 would be better. Filling these RMs with endless text saying the same thing is pointless. Unfair to admins closing, unfair to Users. In ictu oculi (talk) 07:51, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
To be fair, he only did the same as you're now proposing i.e. based on one discussion, let's move all 122. And as only 1 debate in 4 has resulted in a vote for Hbf it seems even less reasonable to do a mass move now without a more rigorous approach, which is what I'm suggesting. Bermicourt (talk) 08:08, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
BTW I also think we need to involve WP:WikiProject Trains and WP:WikiProject Germany. I'm not suggesting this for partisan reasons (I think you'll find they are on your side, anyway) but because they have an interest and relevant expertise. Bermicourt (talk) 08:08, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
No, Bermicourt, there's a difference between making 121 undiscussed controversial moves and putting in a RM to revert 121 undiscussed controversial moves ( or 119 since I just reverted Wels Hauptbahnhof, I was not aware till now of how widespread and completely lacking in any sources these moves were ). For the difference between making an undiscussed controversial move and reverting an undiscussed controversial move see WP:BRD.
However I'm not proposing WP:BRD, I'm proposing that User:Wheeltapper or User:Redrose64 or User:Filelakeshoe or whomsover pick 14 as examples to restore by RM, and note that the restore will affect all 121 undiscussed moves. WP:WikiProject Trains and WP:WikiProject Germany will pick up the move by article alerts, but I would encourage whoever submits the RM to notify both on project Talk as well. Do you agree to a 50 words per User limit? In ictu oculi (talk) 08:21, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
As suggested I just notified a project, but WikiProject Austria - of discussion here, lest they be forgotten. In ictu oculi (talk) 08:34, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

I would recommend to run Leipzig in a seperate RM. The others have an even less chance of having a common English name due to the slim pickings of them being mentioned in English sources and could be lumped together. Agathoclea (talk) 09:41, 14 August 2013 (UTC)

I will begin my comment by thanking In ictu oculi for putting the notice on the WikiProject Austria talk page. I created all of the Austrian articles (and Winterthur Hauptbahnhof), all of which were originally named in the form "Foo Hauptbahnhof", as are their respective subjects in multilingual railway timetables, on route placards carried on trains (including trains crossing language area borders), and on their own station signs (in some cases with "Hauptbahnhof" being abbreviated to "Hbf" ("HB" in the case of Winterthur)). The Austrian articles, and Winterthur, were all then changed to the form "Foo Central Station" without discussion, allegedly in line with the original move of "Berlin Hauptbahnhof" to "Berlin Central Station", following a discussion about the Berlin article of which I had not been aware, and even though "Central Station" is a mistranslation of a German word that means "main station". Now that the Berlin article has been moved back, following another discussion of which I was similarly not aware, but in a result with which I agree, I suggest that all the Austrian articles, and Winterthur, now just be similarly moved back without further discussion (a decision was made some time ago not to move Zürich Hauptbahnhof, following a discussion in which I participated). As a native speaker of English who also speaks German, and who has been interested in the central European rail scene for more than 30 years, I was surprised that there was ever a consensus in favour of "Foo Central Station" in the first place. The only other observation I would make is that a recent article about the subject matter of the Berlin article in Today's Railways Europe (probably the leading English language magazine focusing on the railways of continental Europe) referred to that station, rightly and repeatedly, as "Berlin Hauptbahnhof" throughout. Bahnfrend (talk) 12:47, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
This is old ground. You will find a lot a sources use "Central Station" too, including Austrian Railways (ÖBB) in their English pages. But the debate has moved on - see 2nd para below. Bermicourt (talk) 12:52, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
@IIO. I have a problem with a 50 word limit, because it encourages the sort of "yah-boo" stuff we have had to date and votes like "Let's get on with it" or "Hauptbahnhof is/isn't the real name" which are just unsubstantiated statements. Equally, like you, I don't want to return to long debates, with people on both sides deciding what title they like and selecting evidence to back their choice whilst rubbishing valid evidence from those with a different view. I think we can do better.
Okay so here's another idea. I can see everyone hankering to revert all 122+ Hbf articles. What if we get the go ahead from the 3 WikiProjects concerned, revert all the articles (I won't stand in the way of this if the projects agree and provided their English names are mentioned properly in the lede) and then I work with one or two other volunteers (don't mind who) to research actual usage? Let's face it, no-one has really analysed in detail the extent to which English sources use Hbf v. Central Station v. Main Station, partly because there are millions of hits and also because it's difficult to separate the English and German sources when searching on Hbf. But I think if we give the emotive arguing a rest we will have the time to do this better. Bermicourt (talk) 12:49, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
@Bermicourt. What we could do is use the survey/thread template which effectively has a 50-word limit for everyone else and then a section below for those who haven't heard enough. Which I would strongly advise anyone !voting restore to resist the temptation to enter.
@User:Bahnfrend, yes, noted your hard work on creating so many of these articles. Would you like to do the honours and pick the 14 representative stations for the restore RM? (leaving out Leipzig as Agathoclea suggests). In ictu oculi (talk) 16:53, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
I think trying to do systematic search of sources is doomed, as we will only get bogged down in arguments about whether a particular reliable source should be ignored in favour of some obscure document which turns up on the Nth page of Google search results. The Berlin Hauptbahnhof article's talk page already has lots of reliable sources discussed. Wheeltapper (talk) 19:50, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
Just because it's difficult, doesn't mean we shouldn't try. It's Wikipedia's policy to use reliable sources rather than rhetoric and POV. And I'm sure we can rise above petty arguments if we are determined enough. Those who believe they can do this should be on the team; those that don't should let others give it a shot. The alternative is that the debate rumbles on. Bermicourt (talk) 20:05, 14 August 2013 (UTC)
User:Wheeltapper, agree with you. Who is going to put in the RM? In ictu oculi (talk) 00:35, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
Sorry, real life has intervened in the last few days. Could someone else get the ball rolling? Wheeltapper (talk) 15:36, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
User:Wheeltapper, no problem. In ictu oculi (talk) 04:28, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

Moved from Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Trains[edit]

  • I am one of the editors who favours Hauptbahnhof. Although the various sources are not entirely consistent, they are also not of equal value. In my view, the most important points are these.
    • For several decades until recently, the (West) German railway operator published a telephone book-sized Kursbuch (national timetable) twice each year, with introductory text in German, English and French. This national timetable gave information about all passenger services in Germany and about many passenger services linking Germany with neighbouring countries. In the timetables in this national timetable, all of the stations listed were identified only by their names in the language of the station's location (ie those names were not translated into any other language). So, eg, Frankfurt Hauptbahnhof (or Hbf) was not translated into English, Genève-Aéroport was not translated into German, and Venezia Santa Lucia was not translated into French. Other stations that were just Bahnhof Foo were identified only as Foo.
    • The same practice was followed in regional timetables based on the national timetable, in timetables published privately in various countries, on arrival and departure boards posted on station platforms throughout Germany (and, as far as I am aware, throughout the rest of continental Europe), on station nameboards, and on route placards and "Zugbegleiter" leaflets carried on trains. In each case, there was almost invariably substantial information in English, but the names of the stations were never translated.
    • With the advent of the internet and digital technology, the Kursbuch is no longer printed, and route placards are often now replaced by electronic dot matrix devices. But the longstanding practice of not translating names of stations is still followed on the DB online timetable (in English), the data of which is also used by other railway operators in Europe. For example, if you search on the DB online timetable for a train from "Munich" to "Nuremberg", the search engine will present you with a timetable for trains from München Hbf to Nürnberg Hbf, without translating either name. This traditional approach is also followed by other reliable online sources, eg Google Maps. For example, if you find the main station at Stuttgart on Google Maps, it is labelled Stuttgart Hbf and not translated.
    • Against this decades-old background, I believe that "translating" any of the names of the various Hauptbahnhöfe into English is a recipe only for confusion. It would be like trying to translate Gemütlichkeit or Schadenfreude.
    • The main contest appears to be between Foo Hauptbahnhof and Foo (or English translation of Foo) Central Station, but the literal and most accurate translation of Hauptbahnhof is in fact "Main Station".
    • I do not believe that Foo central station supports Foo Central Station. Rather, it is simply a phrase referring to the central station at Foo, the proper name of which is Foo Hauptbahnhof.
    • It is also necessary, particularly when considering online sources, to bear in mind that most of the articles on English Wikipedia have been (controversially) named "Foo Central Station" for some time, and that this naming practice inevitably affects English usage on other websites, including sites that are not just mirrors of Wikipedia. Bahnfrend (talk) 02:50, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

And there are equally compelling arguments the other way, for example, DB's Business Travel Magazine invariably uses "Foo Central Station" and Ernst's Technical dictionary, Langenscheidt's biggest dictionary, Muret-Sanders, and the online dict.cc all have both "central station" and "main station" as valid translations. And why is translating Hauptbahnhof as "Central Station" confusing, but translating Bahnhof as "station" is not? Maps and timetables always have the native name for obvious reasons.... And, and, and... we could go on. Nevertheless the comments above serve as a good illustration of the depth of feeling in this issue. Bermicourt (talk) 06:05, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

I have more of an issue with "Central Station" than I would have with "Main Station", but even the latter would be confusing because of the well-known German river named Main, which flows past or through a number of cities with a Hauptbahnhof. And in answer to Bermicourt's rhetorical question, "Central Station" is confusing because the station signs and timetables, etc, at Hauptbahnhöfe say Foo Hauptbahnhof (or Foo Hbf) and Haupt does not mean "Central", but "station" is much less confusing, because the station signs and timetables, etc, at Bahnhöfe do not say Bahnhof and Bahnhof means "railway station". Bahnfrend (talk) 07:49, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
People usually have an issue with "Central Station" because:
Haupt normally means "main" and Bahnhof means "station". But German is full of compound nouns where a literal translation makes no sense. E.g. Hauptmann means "captain", not "main man", Bahnhof means "station" not "way court" and so on.
They think it means "geographically central" to the city, when it could actually mean "operationally central to the railway network". That's why many "Central Stations" are not smack in the town centre.
They don't realize that the overwhelming English translation of proper names in the sources is "Foo Central Station". Yes "Foo Main Station" is used, probably because of literal translation, but it's not as common and, in any case, doesn't match English practice where there are lots of "Foo Central Stations" but only one or two "Foo Main Stations" worldwide.
The argument using signs is interesting. Using that logic we'd have to change the "Munich" article to "München" and "Moscow" to "Москва" because that's what the signs and maps say. But I don't think there's a Wiki guideline that says we have follow what signs say. No, the real confusion arises from the fact that English and German are different languages. And in a survey how many English-speakers would understand Hauptbahnhof? Five per cent if we're lucky.
"Foo Main Station" could be confused with the "River Main"? Now you're having a laugh! ;) --Bermicourt (talk) 08:39, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
How many people understand King's Cross or Paragon or Mumps or Termini or Heuston as names for stations? Yet Wikipedia follows sources in using the names. There is a page on Hauptmann, not "central man", and Pariser Platz even though I spotted a German publication using "Paris Square" the other day.[6] If people don't even realise that central might allegedly be used, then there is hardly a strong argument for using it in Wikipedia. Do you have any evidence for your theory that central "could actually mean "operationally central to the railway network"", or is that original research? Perhaps you can give some examples from the English-speaking world? Windsor and Eton Central railway station is at the end of a branch, Gainsborough Central railway station is spectacularly insignificant. This once again highlights just how confusing it is to use "Central" for things which aren't actually called that. Wheeltapper (talk) 22:23, 20 August 2013 (UTC)
I'm sorry you're confused, but either way you need to cite sources, not just a point of view, however fiercely held. I have quoted further sources that support the fact that "central station" is a valid and common translation. If you wish to refute that you need to find sources that clearly prove otherwise or it will start to look like WP:EDITWARRING and we don't really want to go there. Bermicourt (talk) 11:52, 21 August 2013 (UTC)
We need reliable sources, not just speculation about what you believe something "could actually mean". Can you provide reliable sources verifying that your theory about "operationally central to the railway network" is true? Does it matter what percentage of the population understand the origin of a station name (personally I'd be amazed if even 5% know which king had a cross), or why anyone might expect German practice for station names to match English practice? Wheeltapper (talk) 22:55, 23 August 2013 (UTC)

Basel[edit]

So are we really using a source from 1896 to justify the claim that Basel SBB railway station "is still sometimes referred to today as the Centralbahnhof or Basel/Basle Central Station"?! Wheeltapper (talk) 16:01, 15 August 2013 (UTC)

Thank you for pointing that out. But next time, please be bold and move the reference to that part of the sentence which it supports. --Bermicourt (talk) 19:25, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
I did move it. You put it back. Wheeltapper (talk) 15:28, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
Part of the passage Wheeltapper has quoted is a translation of a similar comment in the de.wiki article about Basel SBB. Like many de.wiki articles, that article has no inline citations, but the station's street address is Centralbahnplatz, and my brief internet research (eg of this page) suggests that the first part of the quoted passage is probably correct. However, it is important to bear in mind that the expressions Centralbahnhof (which was the official name of the station from 1860 until 1902) and Centralbahnplatz allude to the former Centralbahn ((Swiss) Central Railway), of which the station was a part, and not to the station's central location in Basel. The quoted passage is therefore somewhat misleading; it would be more accurate if the latter part of it were to read "... or Basel/Basel Central Railway station". Bahnfrend (talk) 06:44, 16 August 2013 (UTC)
There appear to be several stations in various countries called (in the past and/or now) "Central Station" or equivalent that were on a "Foo Central Railway" and may either be named after the railway or because they were "central" to the railway network or the city they serve(d). But ascertaining the original reason for the name is not easy and, I guess in the absence of evidence, we should state the known facts and be wary of drawing a conclusion. Wrt the current text it accurately quotes the name "Basel Central Station" given in the references. Renaming it "Basel Central Railway station" might be WP:OR? --Bermicourt (talk) 08:47, 16 August 2013 (UTC)
We could always use WP:Commonname like we do for pretty much every other station...Wheeltapper (talk) 15:28, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
That's the current name, isn't it? Bermicourt (talk) 17:46, 18 August 2013 (UTC)
I think there are stations in the UK that presently include the word "Central" in their names because they were part of the former Great Central Railway. However, as far as I am aware the present commonname for the station we are discussing here is "Basel SBB" in both German and English, so I would not suggest that the name of the en.wiki article about that station be altered in any way. Bahnfrend (talk) 02:14, 19 August 2013 (UTC)
Agreed. --Bermicourt (talk) 06:39, 19 August 2013 (UTC)

Multi RM[edit]

As discussed by among others User:Wheeltapper and User:Bahnfrend here at Talk:Central station, the multi-RM for 121 stations is at Talk:Kaiserslautern Central Station. In ictu oculi (talk) 05:16, 20 August 2013 (UTC)

Misleading, unsourced claims[edit]

I see the unsourced claims that Central means "main station" are back. Given this is self-evidently not true in the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada, the German-speaking world, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Belgium (etc), perhaps the people who would like Wikipedia to include this claim should provide some verifiable evidence from reliable sources? If it is true that Central means main, it should surely be easy to find some examples of reliable sources calling (say) Exeter, Manchester or Liverpool's main stations "X Central station". Wheeltapper (talk) 11:09, 2 October 2014 (UTC)

Well, Main Station is a redirect to this article, and many publications (and unfortunately also the English Wikipedia) do indeed translate word s like Hauptbahnhof (main railway/train station) to central station. To me, Central station is a common name for a railway station does not sufficiently sum up the word's meaning – or is central station just another equivalent of railway station, as train station is?    FDMS  4    12:06, 2 October 2014 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not a reliable source for Wikipedia. Central station doesn't have a "meaning", beyond a station called Central (rather than Victoria, Parkway, Union, Hauptbahnhof, Główny...) or a description of where it is. Wikipedia is not the place to try to establish a new meaning for a word. If "central station" means "main station" in Wikipedia-world, how do we distinguish between stations which are main stations but are not central in normal non-Wikipedia usage, or where there is a separate station actually called Central? I was in Brussels the other day; if Midi/Zuid is the Central station, what is Centrale/Centraal?(!)
Once again, it comes to the question of what this article is actually for:
  • List of stations actually called Central
  • List of stations which are physically central
  • List of main stations (So Lime Street is Liverpool Central station, and Liverpool Central isn't)
  • List of stations which Wikipedians think Johnny Foreigner ought to have called Central.
Wheeltapper (talk) 14:33, 2 October 2014 (UTC)