Warszawa Centralna railway station
Location of station in Warsaw
|Location||Al. Jerozolimskie 54, Śródmieście, Warsaw, Masovian|
|Connections|| Warszawa Śródmieście|
Warszawa Śródmieście WKD
Warszawa Centralna is the primary railway station in Warsaw, Poland. Designed by architect Arseniusz Romanowicz, its construction began in 1972 and was completed in 1975. The station, located on the Warsaw Cross-City Line, features four underground island platforms with eight tracks in total and is served by the long-distance domestic and international trains of PKP Intercity and Przewozy Regionalne as well as some of the regional trains operated by Koleje Mazowieckie. Adjacent to the north side of the building is a bus station that serves as the central hub for night bus lines.
However, the project encountered substantial problems from the very beginning. The station's design was innovative, but construction was plagued by continuous alterations to the scope of work and sub-standard quality, which in turn hurt functionality and operations upon completion. These problems were partially a result of a hasty completion schedule, with the opening date set to coincide with Leonid Brezhnev's 1975 visit to the capital of the Soviet Union's largest satellite state. The design and construction problems necessitated immediate repairs that would continue through the 1980s. Despite the deficiencies, the structure was fairly advanced for its time and incorporated such features as automatic doors, as well as escalators and elevators for each platform.
After a period of decline, a cosmetic upgrade of the station in 2010-2011 was completed in time for the Euro 2012 championships. Between 2015 and 2016, a mezzanine connecting the waiting room in the west wing to the restaurants in the east wing was constructed. It has been both praised for improving the utilization of space in the main hall and criticized for its futuristic design, which clashes with the building's modernist architecture. The Warsaw city government is contemplating demolishing and replacing the station, either at the same location or farther from the city center. Some elements of the Warsaw press (e.g. Gazeta Wyborcza and Architektura Murator 2012), as well as Swiss journalist and historian Werner Huber, have argued against demolition, claiming that the current Warszawa Centralna is a great example of functionalist architecture and a masterpiece of Polish modernism.
The station is fully accessible to the disabled as well as passengers with heavy luggage.
Warszawa Centralna is connected by an underground passage to two other rail stations: to the west lies Warszawa Śródmieście WKD, the terminus of the WKD suburban light rail line, and to the east lies Warszawa Śródmieście PKP, served by suburban trains run by Koleje Mazowieckie and Szybka Kolej Miejska.
International train services
The station is served by the following international services:
- Berlin-Warszawa-Express: Berlin - Frankfurt (Oder) - Rzepin - Poznań - Kutno - Warsaw
- Warsaw - Mińsk Mazowiecki - Siedlce - Biała Podlaska - Terespol - Brest - Minsk - Smolensk - Moscow
- Warsaw - Katowice - Rybnik - Bohumin - Ostrava - Olomouc - Pardubice - Praha
- Warsaw - Katowice - Rybnik - Bohumin - Ostrava - Bratislava - Budapest
- Warsaw - Katowice - Zebrzydowice - Ostrava - Breclav - Vienna
The station was one of only a handful of public buildings in Warsaw which suffered a technical fault as a result of the millennium bug. The indicator board shut down for approximately 24 hours on 1 January 2000 while its timing chip was replaced. In the meantime, all departures were announced over the public-address system.
- "Warsaw Central". Retrieved 7 May 2015.
- Ryszard Piech (17 November 2008). "Euro 2012 deadline catalyses network upgrade". Railway Gazette International.
- "Antresola na Dworcu Centralnym już otwarta. Co o niej sądzicie? [ZDJĘCIA i WIDEO]" (in Polish). 23 March 2016. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
- Gazeta Wyborcza article: Dworzec Centralny. Burzyć czy zachować? 
- "How political revolutions shaped Warsaw's postwar architecture". FT Now. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
- "Photo of location". fotopolska.eu. Retrieved 7 May 2015.
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