100 years Chur – Arosa
It negotiates an altitude of one thousand metres in exactly one hour: the Arosa Line. Constructed in just two years at the beginning of the 20th century the route is still as impressive as ever. The RhB will be celebrating 100 years of the Chur – Arosa line on 13/14 December 2014.
Towards the end of the 19th century Arosa became a popular spa resort. It was quickly apparent that the road between Chur and Arosa, which was finished in 1890, was unable to cope with the increasing traffic. Various visionaries submitted proposals for the construction of a railway line, but it was years before any agreement could be reached. Finally, in 1911, the Chur-Arosa-Bahn company was founded and in the summer of 1912, under the guidance of Gustav Bener, construction work started. In spite of difficulties such as damaged retaining walls, buried tracks and collapsed arches, it was possible to open the line on 12 December 1914 after just two years' construction time. For many years the Chur-Arosa-Bahn company was a financial success and the line was only integrated into the RhB in 1942.
Impressive constructions – then and now
A total of 19 tunnels and 52 bridges were constructed along the 26-km route between Chur and Arosa. In spite of the difficult terrain – a height of 1,154 metres had to be overcome – high demands were placed on the design of the engineering structures. Particularly famous is the Langwieser Viaduct which, at 100 metres, is the bridge with the greatest span throughout the RhB network. Richard Coray from Graubünden was responsible for the design of this impressive structure. Building is now going on again, with Arosa station being redesigned for the 100th anniversary of the Arosa Line. The modernisation includes a pedestrian overpass from the station to the Weisshorn cable car and a new layout for the station forecourt.
Detailed information about the celebrations can be found at www.rhb.ch/chur-arosa