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Old November 6th, 2012, 05:09 PM   #1
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MISC | Railway sections with multiple parallel tracks

This track map of Greater London got me wondering: which railway sections in the world have multiple parallel running tracks? For example, take a look at the stretch between Clapham Junction and Waterloo Station, or the approach to Victoria Station.

In Holland, the railway stretch in Amsterdam between Sloterdijk and Central stations has six parallel tracks.

I'm also wondering which section has the most parallel running tracks in the world.

As a general rule, let's only discuss sections intended for passenger service, so no railway yards etc., with - say - four or more parallel tracks.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 06:18 PM   #2
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The area around Dybbølsbro station just before Copenhagen central station has 4 S-train tracks (and 2 platforms) and 6 main line tracks.

There are 2 S-train tracks to/from Valby and 2 S-train tracks to/from Ny Ellebjerg

There are 2 main line tracks to/from the airport, 2 to/from Ny Ellebjerg/Hvidovre Fjern and 2 to/from Valby/Hvidovre Fjern.

This photo is a little bit old so the new line from Ny Ellebjerg and flyover where the Ny Ellebjerg line and the airport line is connected is not on the map.


The latest air photosfrom april will probably make explain it a little bit more


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Last edited by bongo-anders; November 6th, 2012 at 06:25 PM.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 06:33 PM   #3
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IIRC the most in the UK is the Bermondsey straight from London Bridge, it has 11 tracks, for 2km or so.
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Old November 6th, 2012, 11:53 PM   #4
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In Brussels, we have a 6 tracks rail line, exclusively used for passenger
traffic, between the stations of Brussels North and Brussels South.

This line is approximately 4 km long and is mostly underground,
although the two extremities are elevated.

There are three intermediate stations, one named Brussels Central
where all trains stop, and two others only used by local trains.

Brussels is a city approximately the size of Boston.

The six tracks carry approximately 1200 trains per day.

You can follow the driver's view (accelerated 4 times) of this line on
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IML82TCVSI (the 2 first minutes).

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Old November 7th, 2012, 01:08 AM   #5
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Would think the Japanese would rank high on this one.

Here's the approach into Tokyo's Hamamatsucho Station :

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Old November 7th, 2012, 03:54 AM   #6
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Most in Japan is 14 tracks near Nippori Station in Tōkyō:

Yamanote Line: 2 tracks
Keihin‒Tōhoku Line: 2 tracks
Tōhoku Main Line: 4 tracks
Tōhoku Shinkansen: 2 tracks
Jōban (Rapid) Line: 2 tracks
Keisei Main Line: 2 tracks

I believe two of the Tōhoku Main Line are primarily used for pull-ins / pull-outs to and from Oku Yard, though, so they may not count 100%. There's also technically the Nippori‒Toneri Liner, which also runs somewhat parallel on this section, although it's actually a rubber-tired system.
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Old November 9th, 2012, 02:13 PM   #7
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Plenty more of those sections in the Netherlands:
Amsterdam CS to Amsterdam Muiderpoort
Amsterdam Bijlmer to Utrecht
Riekepolder-aansluiting (between Amsterdam Zuid and Schiphol) to Hoofddorp
Rotterdam CS to Zwijndrecht

Check out the site SporenplanOnline. You'll proably find even more examples.

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Old November 9th, 2012, 02:55 PM   #8
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Gouda-Gouda Goeverwele
Utrecht - Utrecht overvecht
Utrecht - Houten Castellum (partly under construction)

Also in the Netherlands
Student at Delft University of Technology specializing in Transport & Infrastructure and Airport Design.

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Old November 9th, 2012, 08:36 PM   #9
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The approach to Paris-Nord from the junction at Saint-Denis has 14 parallel tracks, running for about 2 km.

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Old November 24th, 2013, 01:19 PM   #10
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12 tracks in Melbourne's eastern approach.

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Old November 24th, 2013, 11:20 PM   #11
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The approaches to Glasgow Central have three:
  • One for the West Coast Main Line, the Whifflet Line & the North Berwick Line.
  • One for the Cathcart Circle & the Glasgow South Western Line.
  • One for the Ayrshire Coast Line, Inverclyde Line & the Paisley Canal‎ Line.

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Last edited by Black Watch; November 26th, 2013 at 12:04 AM.
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Old November 26th, 2013, 06:10 PM   #12
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In Rome, between Prenestina/San Lorenzo Junction and Roma Tiburtina station there are 15 tracks.

From 29 in Termini they become 7 at Prenestina Junction, than 4 between San Lorenzo junction 1 and San Lorenzo Junction 2, where they become 15 'til Roma Tiburtina (lines from east and south Italy, HST from Napoli and Salerno, regional railways from east Italy, local S-line number 2 added), where they grow to 24.

After Roma Tiburtina there are 6 tracks (2 for the FL1, aka the S1; 4 for HST and National trains) running very close, but not actually parallel, for about 12km.

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Old December 19th, 2013, 08:37 PM   #13
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In Mumbai, India around the suburb of Andheri (West) there were 8 tracks and really busy all the time. Absolute madness with trains in all directions:
4 to and fro on the Churchgate - Virar route (Fast and slow line)
2 for Harbourline (Andheri to CST)
2 for outstations trains of Western Railway.

Unfortunately I do not have an update as I moved out of Mumbai in 2000. The above numbers for Andheri (West) are from 2000.

I am sure there are many such zones in Mumbai with much more parallel tracks.

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Old December 20th, 2013, 01:30 AM   #14
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Netherlands has many 4-track sections, like

- Best-Eindhoven
- Sassenheim-Riswijk
- Dordrecht-Schiedam
- Amsterdam Central - Houten
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Old December 20th, 2013, 07:04 AM   #15
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The Guangshen Railway:


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Old December 20th, 2013, 09:03 AM   #16
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The approach to Boston's North Station has 8 tracks (one's a freight siding though, so lets call it 7).

The western approach to Boston South Station has 5 tracks and the southern approach has 4 tracks.

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Old December 20th, 2013, 11:31 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by Suburbanist View Post
Netherlands has many 4-track sections, like
- Dordrecht-Schiedam
And on that line there is even a 9 track section, between the point where the harbor railway joins norht of Barendrecht, and where the HSL leaves just south. But only 6 tracks are normally used for passenger trains, the other three are for freight.

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Old December 20th, 2013, 05:34 PM   #18
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The south entry to Atocha in Madrid has 5+(1 under construction) double tracked railways running paralell, although only for a short stretch.

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Old January 20th, 2016, 07:50 PM   #19
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The New York Central's Water Level Route across Upstate New York was four-tracked in majority as early as 1876, claiming to be the earliest 4-tracked steel main.

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Old January 21st, 2016, 03:07 AM   #20
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A lot of US Main lines were 4 tracked at one time and a decent amount still retain 3 to 4 tracks...even 6 tracks. Here are some track lines in the NYC area..

Metro North

Harlem Line : Grand Central to Mount Vernon West : 4 tracks
Harlem Line : Mount Vernon West to Crestwood : 3 tracks (Provision to extend up to North White Plains)

Hudson Line : 138th Street JCT to Yankees – East 153rd Street : 4 tracks
Hudson Line : High Bridge to Marble Hill : 3 tracks
Hudson Line : Spuyten Duyvil to the West Side Connection JCT : 3 tracks
Hudson Line : Riverdale to Croton Harmon : 4 tracks

New Haven Line : Woodlawn to Devon (Milford) : 4 tracks
New Haven Line : Devon to Orange : 3 tracks
New Haven Line : West Haven to New Haven : 4 tracks
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