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Children's Railways of the former USSR – Past and Present

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Lvov (Ukraine)

Тепловоз TU2-087
Opened: November 8, 1951
It is located in Striysky Park
Length: 1.2 kms (formerly 1.85 kms)
2 stations: Parkova (Park), Sonjachna (Solar) - formerly, they were called Komsomolskaya and Pionerskaya; till 1976 there was a third station Dityache Mistechko (Children's small town)
Rolling stock: diesel locomotives TU2-087, TU3-039, 4 Pafawag coaches, a goods van; earlier: steam locomotive Kch4-027, diesel locomotive TU3-040, 4 two-axle wooden carriages, 3 freight cars.
Signalling and communications: emi-automatic control, operation of points and signals by keys
Address: Ukraine, Lvov, Ivan Franko's street, 156
Tel.: +38 (0322) 76-44-20
General Manager: KUTYANSKY, Roman Kazimirovich
Reference information: timetable of operation, fares


Construction of the children's railway began at the initiative of the management of the mainline "Lvov railway", with the support of city and regional authorities. The trust "Dorprojekt Lvov Rly." was engaged to design the line. Construction of the line took place very rapidly, using a national construction method.

The work took advantage of the presence of the remains of an earlier narrow-gauge railway built during the Austria-Hungary period in the park, which is located on the site of the so-called East fair. Till now at stations of the children's railway it is possible to see Austrian switch mechanisms dating from the beginning of the 20th century with very unusual (compared with those of russian and soviet railways) switch blades and switch mechanism without weight (see the photo).

When the line was opened, it was 1.85 km long. There were three stations - Komsomolskaya, Pionerskaya and Detsky Gorodok (Dityache Mistechko).

track plan

In the beginning of the 1960s a locomotive depot with three tracks and well-equipped workshops was constructed at Komsomolskaya station.

In 1976, in connection with reconstruction of Stryjskaya street, the station Detsky Gorodok and the adjoining tracks were dismantled. This reduced the length of the children's railway to 1.2 km. In our opinion, the decision to truncate the children's railway was a little bit hasty and rash. Even after enlargement, Stryjskaya street still passes ten metres from the ChRWy's former embankment, and the park avenue that has been built on just this embankment is clearly visible from the buffer stop at Sonjachna station. Probably, it would have been possible to devise a compromise proposal allowing both the street to be enlarged, and the original length of the ChRWy to be saved, if the desire to do so had been sufficient.

After the break-up of the former USSR, the ChRWy stations Komsomolskaya and Pionerskaya were renamed as Parkova (Park) and Sonjachna (Solar).

In the first years of operation of the children's railway the available rolling stock consisted of one steam locomotive Kch4-027, four two-axle wooden passenger coaches and three freight cars.

At the end of the 1960s - the beginning of 1970s the line's rolling stock was updated - the ChRWy then received new all-metal Pafawag coaches and diesel locomotives TU2-087, TU3-039 and TU3-040. On the children's line diesel locomotive TU2-087 has received a rather unusual paint-scheme based on the standard livery of the first releases of type VL8 broad-gauge electric locomotives.

In the 1989 diesel locomotive TU3-040 was written off, and today TU3-039 remains the only diesel locomotive of this series which is still in operation in the territory of the former USSR. Realizing the uniqueness of this machine, the management of the children's railway pays special attention of its safety. Now TU3-039 is used only exceptionally - on holidays and on special occasions. For hauling trains TU2-087 is generally used.


The following material was used in the preparation of this account:
  • materials from Lvov ChRW archive
  • newsletter "Postup", № 71 (729), May 11, 2001
  • materials given by Arsen Poppel
  • material given by Vadim Dzygun
  • Wolfram Wendelin, Karpatendampf. Band 1. Schmalspurbahnen in Ostgalizien., Lemberg, 2002
  • Yandex of quotation
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