05 June 2007
The best station in the world
Patrick Crozier

Up to know my favourite station anywhere was the central station in Cologne.  That was until I clapped eyes on Berlin’s new Hauptbahnhof.  Absolutely glorious, inside and out - light, spacious, clean, logical.  It’s the way stations should be.


So, that’s a German station beating another German station and if were to do a ranking I think German stations would fill up the next few positions.  It would appear that they are on to something.

Which kind of fits in with something I learnt on my study tour of German railways a few years ago.  Apparently, Deutsche Bahnhof - Germany’s national railway - had spent a year working out what a station actually was.  “A town’s calling card” was the expression they used but I suspect there was a lot more to it than that.  Anyway, it appears to have been time well spent.  The results have been fantastic.




  1. “A town’s calling card” is a good term.  How much damage is done to Birmingham when so many people’s first impression of the city is New Street station?

    Posted by Tim Hall on  05 June 2007 at 09:23 pm

  2. A couple of years ago, Berlin Zoogarten didn’t even have a decent departures board, unlike, for example, Kings Cross.

    Posted by dearieme on  05 June 2007 at 10:12 pm

  3. Berlin Hauptbahnhof looks to me to be slightly inconveniently located - that is not the centre of the city. (Although, where the “centre” is in Berlin is a bit hard to say I suppose. Zoo station was certainly better located though). It clearly has great transport connections to anywhere in the city, but I like walking out of a station and finding myself in the centre of things.

    Speaking of new stations as the “calling card” of a city, I will be fascinated to see what St Pancras is like when it is all finished. It has potential to really be something. I really hope they have gotten this one right.

    Posted by Michael Jennings on  10 June 2007 at 01:59 pm

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