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 Nordrhein-Westfalen . Germany

Bielefeld Stadtbahn map © UrbanRail.Net (Robert Schwandl)

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Bielefeld has 320,000 inhabitants and lies in the east of the German land of North-Rhine - Westphalia, half way between Hanover and Dortmund.

The Bielefeld Stadtbahn is a system similar to those operating in Stuttgart, Cologne, Frankfurt or Hanover, i.e. a network combining metro/subway and tram features. When construction of Stadtbahn tunnel sections started in the early 1970's in the near Rhine-Ruhr area (Dortmund, Essen, Bochum, etc.), Bielefeld built its first underground station Beckhausstraße, which opened on 21 Sept. 1971. After that further expansion of the underground network came to a halt due to financial problems. It was finally resumed in the mid-1980's when the north-south tunnel through the city centre was excavated. It opened on 28 April 1991 and included 4 underground stations, Jahnplatz and Hauptbahnhof (central railway station), which are used by all lines, and Wittekindstraße and Nordpark, which are only served by Line 3 trains heading for Babenhausen Süd. Hauptbahnhof was built as a major junction with four tracks, 3 of them on the upper -2 level, and one for Line 1 and Line 2 southbound trains on the lower -3 level.

The last tunnel section for Line 4 from Rathaus to the Universität, with two underground stations Siegfriedplatz and Rudolf-Oetker-Halle, finally opened on 2 April 2000 after some delays. The surface extension to Lohmannshof opened on 29 Sept. 2002. In August 2021, lines 3 and 4 swapped their eastern termini, with Line 4 now serving the Stieghorst leg.

The Stadtbahn network has a total length of 33.5 km and uses 1000 mm gauge. The seven underground stations all have high platforms, most surface stops now have high platforms too, but a few have not yet been rebuilt accordingly and therefore trains are equipped with folding steps.


Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld

21 Sept 1971: Beckhausstraße underground station (Line 2)
28 April 1991: Rathaus ramp - Jahnplatz - Nordpark - ramp (Line 1-2-3)
02 April 2000: Hauptbahnhof - Rudolf-Oetker-Halle - ramp (Line 4)
06 Dec 2015: Milse - Altenhagen (Line 2; 1.3 km)


Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld Stadtbahn Bielefeld


Line 3 Wittekindstraße  © Robert Schwandl Line 3 Nordpark © Robert Schwandl Line 4 Siegfriedplatz © Robert Schwandl Line 4 Rudolf-Oetker-Halle © Robert Schwandl Line 4 Universität © Robert Schwandl Line 2 Beckhausstraße © Robert Schwandl Line 2 Beckhausstraße © Robert Schwandl Hauptbahnhof © Robert Schwandl Hauptbahnhof © Robert Schwandl Jahnplatz © Robert Schwandl
Photos 2005 © R. Schwandl


Ch. Groneck, P. Lohkemper, R. Schwandl: RHEIN-RUHR STADTBAHN ALBUM 2: Gelsenkirchen, Herne, Bochum, Dortmund + Special Bielefeld. - Spring 2006, Robert Schwandl Verlag, ISBN 3936573 085



 Our books about Urban Rail in Germany

Tram Atlas DeutschlandRobert Schwandl:


- 06/2024, Berlin, ISBN 978 3 836573 74 9

- Detailed colour maps for more than 50 German tramway cities, illustrated with numerous photos

- Text German and English

- More details

Schnellbahnen in Deutschland/Metros in GermanyRobert Schwandl:

U-Bahnen in Deutschland

+ U-Stadtbahnen

- Feb 2019, Berlin, ISBN 978 3 836573 57 2

- Anything you need to know about German metro and light rail systems with underground sections, with detailed maps and hundreds of colour photos; 160 pages; Text German and English - More details


MoBiel - Stadtwerke Bielefeld (Tram Operator)

OWL Verkehr GmbH

Stadtbahn Bielefeld at Wikipedia.de

Straßenbahnfreunde Bielefeld




2004 © UrbanRail.Net by Robert Schwandl.