Railways in Luxemburg

Railways in Luxemburg

Industrial railways

In Luxemburg sevearl industrial railways exist or have existed. I will show you some information and a few fotos about the ARBED (steel factory in the south of the country), fotos of the harbour of Mertert and fotos of Intermoselle.

Choose one of the named links below.

belval usines

The Arbed works

The ARBED works in Luxemburg were situated in a lot of places. Most of them in the south of the country. The reason is, that in the past iron ore was found around the French border. Steel factories, balst furnaces and other related industry came to be present. The start was as soon as the railways were present. For the last decades this industry has diminished a lot. There exist some works, bot others have been closed.

For the ARBED a large privately owned network of railways has existed. Several factories and iron ore digging locations were connected with own railway lines. On these lines and sites a lot of privately owned locomotives were present. For some years ago, the ARBED decided that the ownership of rolling stock was no more good for the firm. The locomotives and personel were taken over by the CFL, who nowadays runs the internal transport on the factory terrains, but also on yards of the CFL in other places.


Railways of ARBED

What is today the Arcelor-Mittal steel works, was for a long time the ARBED factories.
And in a very long time ago, the factories were separate entities. Just around 1920 they merged into the ARBED works.

  • Normal gauge railways

    We count 4 normal gauge railways of the ARBED works:
    • 1.   ARBED Terres-Rouges - ARBED Belval
      This line was a connection between the works of Terres-Rouges (south west of Esch-sur-Alzette) and the works of Belval (west of Esch-sur-Alzette). Where the CFL railway viaduct in Esch-sur-Alzette ends and the line comes to normal level, we can still see the large viaduct leading over the Route de Belval and over the CFL railway lines.
       Length : ca. 1,3 km
       Opened : 1927
       Closed : around 1972 (at clusure of Terres-Rouge)
    • 2.   ARBED Terres-Rouges - ARBED Esch-Schifflange
      This line was a connection between the works of Terres-Rouges (south west of Esch-sur-Alzette) and the works of Esch-Schifflange (east of Esch-sur-Alzette). It ran from Terres-Rouges via a tunnel under the CFL line between Esch-sur-Alzette and Audun-le-Tiche, alongside the railway station (at the southern side), and then via a large viaduct over the tracks of CFL to the Esch-Schifflange works.
       Length : ca. 2,0 km
       Opened : 1927
       Closed : around 1972 (at clusure of Terres-Rouge)
    • 3.   ARBED Belval - ARBED Esch-Schifflange
      Part of this line existed for a longer time as a factory owend line to the dump of iron slack, rests of the process of making iron out of ore. This area was situated north of the Belval works. In 1991 there was made a connection from this area alongside the motorway north of Esch-sur-Alzette to the northern side of the Esch-Schifflange works.
       Length : ca. 6,0 km
       Opened : 1991
       Closed : ?? (for me it is nog clear if the line still is in use)
    • 4.   ARBED Belval - Differdange
      To make a better connection between the ARBED works of Belval and that of Differdange, a new line was created under mount Soleuvre. In this line there is a tunnel of 895 meters. Because of this new line the ARBED internal transport did not have to pass the CFL tracks between Belval and Differdange.
      Around 1985 plans existed to make a new public railway line from Pétange via this tunnel to the area of Belval-Usines. Plans existed to share the ARBED-owned line and traffic of the CFL. In this plans the old line from Differdange via Belval-Rédange, Belvaux-Soleuvre would be abandoned. But plans changed, and the new line was no more in the picture. The allready aquired area for the new line has now been converted into a roadway from Soleuvre to Pétange.
       Length : ca. 4,9 km
       Opened : 1974
       Closed : - (still in use)
  • Narrow gauge railways

    In most of the factories of ARBED ant its predecessors there has existed a network of narrow gauge railways, all of 700 mm track width. It was used for site internal transport. In the beginning there were steam locs, from about 1920 on there were (simple) electric locs, of 500 V direct current.
    Besides the lines for site internal transport, there were several lines of narrow gauge. Some of them are:
    • A.   Differdange - Oberkorn
      To bring iron ore from the site where it was excavated in Oberkorn to the blast furnace of Differdange there existed a narrow gauge railway. As there was place available alongside the PH railway, the factory and PH agreed to lay the line besides the PH railway.
       Length : ca. 1,2 km
       Opened : ?
       Closed : ?
    • B.   Differdange - Thillenberg
      From the year when the factory in Differdange was opened, there existed a short line from the iron ore loading site to the works in. In .... the line was lengthened and run by the PH railway. In 1933 the line was taken over by the factory itself. The two steam locs of the line also went to the factory. The line was closed around 1972.
       Length : ca. 2,3 km
       Opened : ?
       Closed : 1972
    • C.   Schifflange - Höhltal
      From the iron ore loading places in the Höhltal (south of Esch-sur-Alzette) there was a line to the works in Esch-Schifflange. It ran just south alongside the railway station of Esch-sur-Alzette.
       Length : ca. 3,4 km
       Opened : ?
       Closed : ?
    • D.   Dudelange - Reiterskopf
      From the ireon ore loading places west of Dudelange works there was a line to this works.
       Length : ca. 1,0 km
       Opened : ?
       Closed : ?
To se fotos, click in the menu


Foto's of Arbed railways

No fotos available

Foto's of Arbed Dudelange

No fotos available

Foto's of Arbed Belval Usines

No fotos available

Foto's of Arbed Differdange

No fotos available

Foto's of Arbed Schifflange

No fotos available

Foto's of Arbed Rodange

No fotos available

Port Mertert

In 1964 the river Moselle was canalized. That means that by means of dams and locks the water height in the river could be regulated. As a consequence of that, ships with a greater tonnage could sail over the river. In the years 1964-1966 a new port was established nearby the village of Mertert. And ofcourse a railway link was made to that port.

In recent years (1954) the local railway from Wasserbillig to Grevenmacher was closed. This trace could be used partly to make a new, now electrified, railway branche from the station of Wasserbillig to the new port in Mertert.

Foto's of Port of Mertert

No fotos available


In 1973 a new factory of cement was founded near Dudelange. The lime was digged just near the factory just south of the border between Luxemburg and France. From the digging area the chalk was transported by means of a conveyor belt to the newly made installations. From there the chalk is transported by train to the factories in Esch sur Alzette and to a factory in Germany.

To make transportation by railways possible a new short railway branch was made from the station of Tétange.

Foto's of Intermoselle loading area

No fotos available