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 Hamburg . Germany


Hamburg U-Bahn Map > Click on map to expand to full size >>>
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With a population of 1.8 million (some 2.6 million in the metropolitan area), Hamburg is Germany's second largest city after Berlin. Although located 100 km from the North Sea it is one of Europe's major ports.



U-Bahn, S-Bahn & Tram in HamburgConstruction of an underground/elevated train system (Hochbahn) started in 1907. Initially a circle line, split up in 1973 between U2 and U3, opened in 1912. After that, branches were added to the ring line, first towards the west (today's U2 to Lutterothstr.), then towards the north (today's U1 to Ochsenzoll), from Barmbek to Großhansdorf and Ohlstedt (now U1; initially operated with steam trains) and a branch from Hauptbahnhof to Rothenburgsort, which was not reopened after World War II as the area was heavily destroyed. Before the war still, the Ohlsdorf branch (now U1) was extended from Kellinghusenstraße to Jungfernstieg in the city centre.

After World War II it took five years to re-establish operation on the entire ring line. An important expansion of the network was carried out in the 1960s with an underground section of U1 between Jungfernstieg and Wandsbek-Gartenstadt, and the mostly underground to Merkenstraße (initially the eastern leg of line U3, now U2/U4). Line numbers were introduced in 1966. In the early 1970s, a new cross-city line (U2) was built using deep bored tunnels. This section includes 3 tube-type stations (Messehallen, Gänsemarkt and Hauptbahnhof Nord). Jungfernstieg (lying under the Binnenalster lake) and Hauptbahnhof Nord were laid out with four tracks to provide for a once planned line U4, which would have run from Sengelmannstraße (U1) via Borgweg (U3) to Hauptbahnhof, and then west to Altona (S) and Lurup. Until 1996 short extensions were added to all three lines.

Together with the new U4 project, Berliner Tor station was rebuilt to allow U2 trains from Niendorf Nord to continue to Mümmelmannsberg, thus improving the distribution of passenger loads. The new arrangement was put into service on 29 June 2009. Line U3 now runs from Berliner Tor back to Barmbek and further on to Wandsbek Gartenstadt, similar to the original alignment opened in 1912, when the ring was operated as a true circular line.

After the introduction of line U4 (actually a branch of line U2) in December 2012 and its extension to Elbbrücken in December 2018, the "Hamburger Hochbahn" (elevated metro) has a total length of 106 km (44 km underground), with all lines running underground, elevated or at grade (especially U1 northeastern branch) at some stage.

Detailed U-Bahn history (thanks to Alex Riabov)

 Line U1 - Norderstedt Mitte - Ohlstedt / Großhansdorf

55.8 km
47 stations

01-12-1914: Kellinghusenstraße - Ohlsdorf
06-09-1920: Wandsbek-Gartenstadt – Volksdorf (Walddörferbahn)
01-07-1921: Ohlsdorf - Ochsenzoll (Langenhorner Bahn)
05-11-1921: Volksdorf - Großhansdorf (Walddörferbahn)
01-02-1925: Volksdorf - Ohlstedt (Walddörferbahn)
02-06-1929: Kellinghusenstraße - Stephansplatz (KellJung-Linie)
25-03-1931: Stephansplatz - Jungfernstieg


22-02-1960: Jungfernstieg - Meßberg
02-10-1960: Meßberg - Hauptbahnhof Süd (damals: Hauptbahnhof)
02-07-1961: Hauptbahnhof Süd - Lübecker Straße
01-10-1961: Lübecker Straße - Wartenau
28-10-1962: Wartenau - Wandsbek Markt
03-03-1963: Wandsbek Markt - Straßburger Straße
04-08-1963: Straßburger Straße - Wandsbek-Gartenstadt
01-06-1969: Ochsenzoll - Garstedt
28-09-1996: Garstedt - Norderstedt Mitte
09-12-2019: Oldenfelde station added

More U1 photos

U1 Norderstedt Mitte U1 Langenhorn Markt U1 Wartenau
 Line U2 - Niendorf Nord - Mümmelmannsberg

24.3 km
25 stations

21-10-1913: Schlump – Emilienstraße
23-05-1914: Emilienstraße – Hellkamp
01-05-1964: temporary line closure and permanent closure of Hellkamp station
30-05-1965: Schlump – Lutterothstraße
30-10-1966: Lutterothstraße – Hagenbecks Tierpark
02-01-1967: Berliner Tor – Horner Rennbahn (as part of U3)
24-09-1967: Horner Rennbahn – Legienstraße (as part of U3)
29-09-1968: Hauptbahnhof Nord – Berliner Tor (U21)


28-09-1969: Legienstraße – Billstedt (as part of U3)
31-05-1970: Billstedt – Merkenstraße (as part of U3)
31-05-1970: Schlump – Gänsemarkt (U22)
03-06-1973: Gänsemarkt – Hauptbahnhof Nord
01-06-1985: Hagenbecks Tierpark – Niendorf Markt
29-09-1990: Merkenstraße – Mümmelmannsberg (as part of U3)
09-03-1991: Niendorf Markt – Niendorf Nord
29-06-2009: Berliner Tor - Mümmelmannsberg integrated into line U2

More U2 photos

U2 Niendorf Nord U2 Messehallen U2 Mümmelmannsberg
 Line U3 - Barmbek - Wandsbek-Gartenstadt

20.6 km
26 stations

01-03-1912: Rathaus - Barmbek via Mundsburg
10-05-1912: Barmbek - Kellinghusenstraße
25-05-1912: Kellinghusenstraße - St. Pauli
29-06-1912: St. Pauli - Rathaus
06-09-1920: Barmbek - Wandsbek-Gartenstadt

More U3 photos

U3 Landungsbrücken U3 Sternschanze U3 Mundsburg
 Line U4 - Elbbrücken - Billstedt

13.7 km
12 stations

In 2002, a new project for line U4 was presented. An underground extension was considered the best option to link the HafenCity (a kind of London style docklands redevelopment) to the city centre. Initially, this was to become a branch of line U3 diverging at Rathaus station and heading south with 2 stations. Between Rathaus and Barmbek (eastern ring) it would have run on the existing tracks. From Barmbek another branch was to be built north to Steilshoop and Bramfeld (4-5 stations - see original network layout). This route would have made the reconstruction of the present Rathaus station a difficult task, so eventually a new route diverging from Jungfernstieg, where separate tracks are available within the U2 station, was decided upon, with construction having started in 2007 (see final network layout). The new branch opened in Dec 2012, with the new line U4 running from Überseequartier to Billstedt. The terminus in the port area HafenCity-Universität was initially served only during weekends. In 2011 it was decided that the U4 branch would be extended by one station to Elbbrücken, with the option of being extended later south to Wilhelmsburg. In 2019, the new terminus at Elbbrücken will become an interchange with the S-Bahn. (Official project website)

see line U2 for shared section
29-11-2012: Jungfernstieg - HafenCity-Universität (free trial service)
09-12-2012: Jungfernstieg - Überseequartier (revenue service)
10-08-2013: Überseequartier - HafenCity-Universität (revenue service)
06-12-2018: HafenCity-Universität - Elbbrücken (1.5 km)

More U4 photos

U4 Jungfernstieg U4 Überseequartier U4 HafenCity Universität
 U-Bahn Projects

At the eastern end, a new branch will be built for U4, diverging from the shared U2/U4 section at Horner Rennbahn to terminate at Dannerallee (Horner Geest), with an intermediate station at Stoltenstraße (1.9 km). [More info]

The first (easternmost) section of the long-planned U5 may start construction in 2021 for an opening in 2026/27, running from Bramfeld via Steilshoop, Nordheimstraße, Sengelmannstraße (U1) to City-Nord (5.8 km). It is later planned to be extended through the city centre and west to Lurup.

[U-Bahn Projects]



472 train near Sternschanze 2003 © UrbanRail.NetThe U-Bahn is complemented by a dense S-Bahn service operating like a metro in central areas. Like the Berlin S-Bahn, Hamburg's S-Bahn is totally independent from other rail traffic and uses third rail power supply. The network consists of two inner-city links between the two mainline railway stations, Hamburg Hauptbahnhof and Hamburg-Altona and five branches.

The original surface link (Verbindungsbahn) via Dammtor was already opened in 1866, the route was put on an embankment by 1906 and two separate tracks for local traffic were added. In 1907, electric service (with overhead power supply, 6300 V ac) began between Blankenese and Ohlsdorf (now S11 route). From 1939 until 1955, the suburban lines were changed to third rail power supply (1200 V dc). From 1924 electric trains have been running to Poppelbüttel and from 1954 along the mainly single-track line to Wedel. Trains to/from Wedel need to change direction at Blankenese.

Harburg Rathaus station 2003 © UrbanRail.NetThe S-Bahn network was expanded after World War II along the mainline to Berlin. After the division of Germany, this route lost its former importance and in 1958 the line was electrified for S-Bahn service as far as Bergedorf. It was extended to Aumühle in 1969 (now S2 route). In the early 1990's separate tracks were added for the re-established line to Berlin.

The first section of the northwestern branch to Pinneberg (now S3 route) opened in 1962 as far as Langenfelde. The S-Bahn eventually reached Pinneberg in 1967. The S-Bahn route across the Elbe River had been planned for a long time, but it took until 1983 until the southern district of Harburg was linked to the city centre. The current S3 terminus Neugraben was reached in 1984. This section includes 3 underground stations.

The most important piece of the network is, however, the so-called City S-Bahn, and underground link between the Hauptbahnhof and Altona. Construction began in 1967 and the first section Hauptbahnhof - Landungsbrücken was opened in 1975, including the complex underwater station at Jungfernstieg built at the same time as the U2 station. In 1979, the cross-city tunnel was finished, the link between Altona and Diebsteich followed in 1981.

During normal daytime service there are 4 S-Bahn lines running every 10 minutes, S1 and S3 via the city tunnel, and S21 and S31 via Dammtor. During rush hours S2 and S11 offer extra trains. On the partly single-track sections Wedel - Blankenese and Bergedorf - Aumühle trains run every 20 minutes.

The Hamburg S-Bahn system, which is operated on exclusive tracks and with third-rail dc power supply, has a total length of 113km (8km single-track, 13km underground) with 61 stations, of which 10 are underground, plus 31.9km shared with other trains and with overhead power supply between Neugraben and Stade:

474 train at Wedel 2003 © UrbanRail.NetS1: Wedel - Blankenese - Altona - Landungsbrücken - Hauptbahnhof - Barmbek - Ohlsdorf - Poppenbüttel (41.5km)
S11 (rush hours only): Blankenese - Altona - Dammtor - Hauptbahnhof - Ohlsdorf ( - Poppenbüttel)

S21: (Pinneberg) - Elbgaustraße - Dammtor - Hbf - Bergedorf - Aumühle (44.2km)
S2 (rush hours only): Altona - Landungsbrücken - Hbf - Bergedorf

S3: Pinneberg - Altona - Landungsbrücken - Hbf - Harburg - Neugraben (43.5km)
S31: Altona - Dammtor - Hbf - Harburg Rathaus (- Neugraben)

In order to expand the S-Bahn (S3) from Neugraben west to Buxtehude and Stade, dual-system trains (third-rail/dc and catenary/ac) started service on the 32 km route in Dec 2007, sharing tracks with other DB services. During off-peak hours, S-Bahn line S3 runs through to Stade only hourly, and every 20 minutes during peak hours.

A 3 km, mostly underground S-Bahn branch from Ohlsdorf was finally completed in Dec. 2008 to link the city centre to the airport. Line S1 trains are divided at Ohlsdorf with the front section continuing to the airport, and the rear to Poppenbüttel.

S-Bahn History

S+U logo at Sternschanze 2003 © UrbanRail.Net01-10-1907: S1 Blankenese - Ohlsdorf
04-10-1959: S2/S21 Berliner Tor - Bergedorf
22-02-1962: S3/S21 Holstenstraße - Langenfelde
30-05-1975: S1/S3 Hauptbahnhof - Landungsbrücken "City S-Bahn"
25-09-1983: S3/S31 Hauptbahnhof - Harburg Rathaus
09-12-2007: S3 Neugraben - Stade
12-12-2008: S1 Ohlsdorf - Hamburg Airport (Flughafen)
15-12-2019: + Elbbrücken
31-05-2023: + Ottensen

Detailed S-Bahn history


Hamburger Hochbahn AG (Official Site)U-Bahn, S-Bahn & Tram in Hamburg

HVV (Hamburger Verkehrsverbund)

S-Bahn Hamburg (Official Site)

U-Bahn Projects

Nahverkehr Hamburg - News

Hamburg U-Bahn History (by André Loop)

Hamburger U-Bahn at Wikipedia.de

DT5Online (feat. many station photos; by Marcel Auktun)

Die Hamburger S-Bahn (by Martin Heimann)

Historische S-Bahn e.V.

UrbanRail.Net > Hamburg Photo Gallery

BahnInfo.de News & Forum

NimmBus.de Fahrplanauskunft

Gleispläne / Track Maps


 Our book about Urban Rail in Hamburg
U-Bahn, S-Bahn & Tram in Hamburg

Robert Schwandl:


Urban Rail in the Hanseatic City

- Oct 2020, Berlin, ISBN 978 3 836573 64 0

- In the northern metropolis, the HOCHBAHN operates Germany’s second largest U-Bahn system. Like in Berlin, this is complemented by an S-Bahn network run by Deutsche Bahn and equipped with a third-rail power supply. Since 1978, the hanseatic city has not had any trams, but nonetheless, we also take a look back at the history of this means of urban transport. This book includes everything you want to know about the history of Hamburg's U-Bahn and S-Bahn systems as well as the AKN, a network of diesel-electric local railways in the north of Hamburg. Numerous, mostly colour photographs give you a good impression of the once extensive tram network too.

- Text German and English

- More details

 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

2004 © UrbanRail.Net by Robert Schwandl.