The Narrow-Gauge Suburban Railway of
Bahia - Brazil

Rapid transit lines and freight railways are still being
built in Latin America, but most of the historic old railways
have disappeared or have discontinued passenger service.
The new lines use standard or a wider gauge
and some suburban trains are pulled by diesel locomotives.
An exception to this trend is a railway that still runs today in
Salvador, Brazil, and is remnant of one of Brazil's oldest railroads,
the Ferrovia da Bahia ao S. Francisco, which opened in 1860.
The present line runs from Calçada station in the port area
to Paripe, is 14 km long, electrified, uses meter gauge
and carries passengers - but has rarely been photographed.
Operator is the Companhia Brasileira de Trens Urbanos -
which runs suburban railways in several Brazilian cities
and wants to rebuild the Salvador line as a modern metro.
See map showing this line and the metro under construction.
The following pictures were taken
in February 1992 by Alexandre Santurian of Brazil
and in September 1999 by Andrew Ludasi of the United States.
Mr. Ludasi's slides were digitalized by Dave Porter.

Interior of Calçada station, the terminus of the line
in Salvador's Cidade Baixa (Lower City).
[Andrew Ludasi]

The yard behind Calçada station.
A section of Salvador's "Cidade Alta" (Upper City)
can be seen beyond. [Andrew Ludasi]

The railway uses 18 motor cars
built in 1962 by ACF/GE in the United States
and 31 trail cars from Pidner in Brazil.
Note CBTU logo on the side. [Andrew Ludasi]

About 4 km north of Calçada the line crosses São João Bridge
over part of Todos os Santos Bay. The bridge was built in 1952
and is 540 m long. It replaced the original bridge of 1860.
[Alexandre Santurian]

Almeida Brandão station, just north of the bridge,
is one of eight stops on the line.
[Alexandre Santurian]

The railway skirts the shore of Todos os Santos Bay,
which is about 30 km wide.
The scene here is near Itacaranha
[Alexandre Santurian]

Periperi station is inland and 10.4 km from Calçada.
[Alexandre Santurian]

The Periperi tunnels, between Periperi and Coutos stations.
The left tunnel is the original English structure of 1860
and is the oldest railway tunnel in South America
(the San Pedro tunnel near Limache, Chile, opened in 1861).
The right tunnel was added when the line was
double-tracked and electrified in the 1940s.
Electrification - and passenger service - ends at Paripe
about 2 km beyond the tunnels. [Alexandre Santurian]

This webpage was created by Allen Morrison on 15/10/1999.
Additional photographs were added on 15/3/2002.