Scandinavia Railways Society

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Smart Operation on the Saltsjöbanan - by Alan Spode

This self-contained line, on the southeast side of the city is no longer linked to the main rail network, freight-only connections having been lifted. Running eastwards from its Slussen terminus, served by two subway lines, the mainly single-track route runs for sixteen kilometres to its terminus at Saltsjöbaden. Three stops before Saltsjöbaden, a stub branch runs for three kilometres from Igelboda to Solsidan.
I first travelled on the Saltsjöbanan way back in February 1993 in wintry conditions, totally different to the sun-drenched weather a few weeks ago. I rather like the stock, its flared profile being reminiscent of the District Line R and the Metropolitan O & P stock, so familiar to me in my early years. Unlike the LT stock, the Saltsjöbanan vehicles do not have flared doors and are composed of four cars.

SJsalt3.jpg - 341Kb

SL Igelboda station with SL unit 2899

The Saltsjöbanan is now an integral part of Storstockholms Lokaltrafik, the Stockholm public transport body. The latter franchises its operations to a multitude of companies, the Saltsjöbanan being operated by Arriva.
The basic timetable operates at a 20-minute frequency, with crossing moves taking place at Henriksdal, between Storängen and Saltsjö-Duvnäs on a short double-track section and at Igelboda.

The connection arrangements at Igelboda for the Solsidan shuttle are very slick:
For just over fifteen minutes in each twenty-minute cycle, the island platform at Igelboda is devoid of trains.
Then there is a frantic window of activity...

First the westbound xx.36 Saltsjöbaden to Slussen (Train A) arrives at xx.41 and stops at the west end of the south face (Spår 2A).

Then the two-car xx.37 shuttle from Solsidan (Train B) appears off the branch and stops immediately behind Train A at Spår 2B, booked at xx.43....

Next the eastbound xx.20 Slussen to Saltsjöbaden (Train C)arrives on the north face (Spår 1) at xx.43.

  Spår 1
>>  [ Train C (3) 4-coach ( xx.43 ) ]
[============Central Platform Central Platform ===========]
  Spår 2A
[Train A ( xx.41 ) 4-coach ] << permissve block [Train B - 2-car Solsidan Shuttle ( xx.43 ) ] << Spår 2B
There is a surge of activity as passengers exchange from and to the shuttle, plus plenty of people heading off [Train C] into the nearby village.
  Spår 1
    [ Train C 4-coach (3) ] >>
[============Central Platform Central Platform ===========]
  Spår 2A
<< [Train A 4-coach ( xx.44) ] permissve block [Train B - 2-car Solsidan Shuttle ] Spår 2B >>

All three trains are booked to depart at xx.44, although during my three periods of transit [Train A]departed first,
then [Train B] with [Train C] being the last arrival and departure.

This cycle repeated every twenty minutes.

SJsalt2.jpg - 266Kb

The Solsidan shuttle, with three intermediate stops, was quite well-used during its six-minute journey

SJsalt1.jpg - 241Kb The Waiting Room & Ticket office at Solsidan Station at the end of spur.

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