History of the Schneeberg Railway

Fast forward
1872 - 1895

1872: Initial plans for the construction of a cog railway on the Schneeberg
1885: Engineer Josef Tauber is awarded a preliminary concession for a "locomotive railway" from Wiener Neustadt to Puchberg am Schneeberg
4th November 1895: The railway construction enterprise of Engineer Leo Arnoldi is entrusted with the construction of the Schneeberg Railway

1895 - 1897

9th December 1895: The ceremonial ground-breaking ceremony is held for the construction of Puchberg am Schneeberg station
15th April 1897: Opening of the standard gauge adhesion stretch from Wiener Neustadt to Puchberg


1st June 1897: Opening of the first subsection of the cog railway from Puchberg to Baumgartner
25th September 1897: Opening of the second subsection of the cog railway from Baumgartner to Hochschneeberg


28th June 1898: Opening of the hotel on the Hochschneeberg, built by the Viennese architects Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Helmer, who are renowned for their works inspired by properties on Vienna's Ringstraße


1st January 1899: The Imperial Royal and Privileged Eisenbahn Wien – Aspang (EWA) company takes over all the facilities and management of the Schneeberg Railway. The main shareholder of EWA was the Brussels-based Société Berge de Chemins de Fer company.

1902 - 1937

18th June 1902: Emperor Franz Joseph I. travels on the Schneeberg Railway and visits the Empress Elisabeth church and the hotel.
1st July 1937: Acquisition of the business by the BBÖ (Bundesbahn Österreich) company, with the facilities remaining under the ownership of EWA.

1938 - 1940

1938: Takeover of the business by the DRB (Deutsche Reichsbahn) company
1st January 1940: Nationalisation by the Reich Transport Minister and incorporation of the Schneeberg Railway without remuneration to shareholders into the Reich Railway Fund

1945 - 1996

1945 – 1947: The Austrian State Railway Company takes over management of the Schneeberg Railway
1947 – 1996: The national rail operator Österreichische Bundesbahnen (ÖBB) takes over the Schneeberg Railway

1st January 1997
1.Jänner 1997

1st January 1997: An independent operating company owned by Niederösterreichische Verkehrsorganisation GmbH (NÖVOG) and ÖBB takes over the operation of the cog railway. The company's name is Niederösterreichische Schneebergbahn GmbH. The infrastructure remains under the ownership of ÖBB.

1997 - 1998

8th September 1997: Ceremony marking the centenary of the cog railway on the Hochschneeberg
October 1998: Start of construction of the new workshop building
11th December 1998: Official presentation of the "Salamander" design of the new diesel locomotive


24th July 1999: The new "Salamander" railcars come into service for the first time in the 1999 season alongside the traditional steam trains
11th September 1999: "Baptism" ceremony for the new Salamander railcars and the official inauguration of the new workshop


4th June 2002: Work commences on the construction of the Hochschneeberg water supply and sewage disposal facility and on the construction of a Puchberg – Hochschneeberg power supply line
15th June 2002: Opening of the Hochschneeberg Kinderbergwelt children's playground just a five-minute walk from the new mountain station


19th April 2003: Start-up of the new Schneeberg Railway sales and information system. The online sale of tickets is introduced.
End of 2003: Opening of the water supply system on the Hochschneeberg


12th May 2005: Ceremonial blessing and commissioning of the Empress Elisabeth vintage carriage and of the Salamander "baby"
8th December 2005: Official inauguration of the Schneeberg chairlift in Losenheim


2nd June 2007: Work on construction of the mountain station gets underway
2007: Start of construction of the new Hengsttal station. This also included construction of the VOKA gallery.


8th May 2008: Opening of Hengsttal station and the VOKA gallery.
2008: Commissioning of the second Salamander baby and construction and start-up of the electronic signals at the water point on the Hengst


Start of May 2009: Inauguration of the new Hochschneeberg mountain station 1,800 m above sea level ‒ the highest mountain station in Lower Austria
Start of May 2009: Start of construction of the water supply and sewage disposal facility for the Damböckhaus and Fischerhütte lodges
17th July 2009: Official opening of the mountain station
16th September 2009: The Schneeberg Railway was voted the most popular destination by 10,000 Kurier newspaper readers in a survey conducted by the Niederösterreich CARD company


April 2010: Delivery and commissioning of a new Salamander multiple-unit train and start-up of the new passenger information system in the trains
May 2010: The Damböckhaus and Fischerhütte lodges are connected to the water and sewer network
Autumn 2010: Takeover of the Baumgartner station.
Extensive renovation work begins along the route of the Schneeberg Railway and new electric signals are installed.


9th July 2011: Opening of the "Panorama Paradise" themed trail with audio guide rental at the Hochschneeberg mountain station (an easy hiking trail which takes one hour)


12th January 2012: The NÖ Verkehrsorganisationsges.m.b.H. (NÖVOG) company takes over the entire infrastructure
8th September 2012: Official ceremony marking the 115th anniversary of the Schneeberg Railway


26th April 2013: Commissioning of the new traffic signals at the station exit from Puchberg
September 2013: Completion of the new toilets at Baumgartner station
October 2013: Construction of a new 58-space car park behind the premises of the Schneeberg Railway


26th March 2014: Breaking of earth ceremony for the new tourism portal at the Schneeberg Railway station in Puchberg
April 2014: Work begins on the tourism portal


23rd May 2015: Official opening of the new tourism portal
24th October 2015: The Schneeberg Railway achieves second place in the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF) show "9 Plätze - 9 Schätze" ("Nine places - nine treasures")


The Schneeberg Railway sets a new passenger record with 178,000 visitors in the 2016 season

120 Jahre Schneebergbahn

June 2017: Opening of the Wiesenflitzer slide at the Wunderwiese adventure park in the district of Losenheim
25th June 2017: Ceremony to mark "120 years of the Schneeberg Railway" and opening of the permanent "Imperial Schneeberg" exhibition in the tourism portal