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Budapest tram snapshots 4.

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Routes 12 and 14

On a sunny weekend me and fellow tram enthusiast NZA went out to see the trams in Northern Pest, mainly in Újpest.

We've had luck: just as we arrived to Remise Angyalföld, we saw two Tatra sets entering service via the back door of the depot: a double-set of route 12...

... and a triple-set of route 14, heading for the inner terminus at Lehel tér.

While most of Újpest was turned into one big housing area with highrise buildings, the bend at István út/Görgey Artúr utca still bears memories of how this vicinity once looked like.

Inbound T5C5 triple-set of route 14.

T5C5 double-set of route 12. As you can see, there are no platform isles in Görgey István utca, passengers must board the trams via the street surface.

Another sharp bend, this time in front of the Újpest-Rákospalota railway station.

This section of route 14 to the housing area Káposztásmegyer was opened in 1998. The inhabitants were promised an extension of the subway line M3, but they only got the tram instead...

The "giant loop" of Pesterzsébet

If you want to see Budapest trams in "exotic" surroundings, you should go to Pesterzsébet. This small-village-district was a separate settlement until 1950, which had a surprisingly dense network on its narrow streets with two "loop" tram lines coming from Pest, and another loop, a side-line of the suburban railways (HÉV). At a point all these lines were contracted, and then parts of it were abandoned.

All that left is an almost 8-shaped (like a distorted circle) loop running around on the side of some quite bucolic streets.

There are two services uning this loop currently...

... route 52 with UV double-sets...

... and route 30 with Ganz CSMG2 articulated cars.

Every year rumours surface that the loop will be closed, so I'm trying to use every opportunity to come here and take such photos as this one!


Közvágóhíd means "Central Abbattoir", but for us this is an interesting place because this is where tram routes 1, 2 and 24 terminate, where the vicinal service to Ráckeve starts...

... and there's also the suburban service to Csepel passing by! The area to the right of the tracks was a big shunting yard until the end of the eighties, now its being built in with apartment houses and cultural institutions like the National Theater.

Panorama of the city taken from the flyover bridge of the suburban railway. From left to the right: a new university campus, with the Gellért-hegy and the Citadella in the background, Petőfi Bridge, with the white contours of Erzsébet híd (Elisabeth Bridge) behind it, a small bit of the Buda Castle District, and a bit of the inner city of Pest.

Frightening sight: a railway bridge full of cars!

The terminus of route 2 and 24. The vehicles are modernised Ganz articulated cars (KCSV7). The one on the left-hand side without a route number is the reserve for these lines.

Earlier there was a tram and a HÉV depot on the other side of the street, now only a few diverging tracks bear their memories. The track going straight ahead...

... leads to the inner terminus of the vicinal service (HÉV) to Ráckeve.

Next page: route 2 shortened, route 69 supplemented with buses for a while, plus the reversing loop of route 42

© Ákos Endre VARGA, unless stated otherwise. All rights reserved.

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