e-ISSN: 2671-3659
p-ISSN: 2671-3675
Founded: 2021
Period: Biannually
Publisher: Balkan Studies Foundation


The Efforts of Ottoman Empire to Build Railways in the Balkan (1855-1913)

Besnik Emini Institute of Spiritual and Cultural Heritage of the Albanians Author 0000-0002-4515-8210




During the second half of XIX century there were several plans to build railway in Ottoman Empire. Some of these plans were to be realized in the Balkans. Because Ottoman Empire did not had a technical possibilities to build this infrastructure by herself, started the negotiations with different European funds, governments, companies and personalities. The part of the Ottoman Empire in Europe had a priority in the project for building railway, by connecting Istanbul with European railway network through Sarajevo, which later fell under Austro-Hungarian administration. But there were also plans for connecting important harbors with internal part of the country. One of the plans was the railway line Thesaloniki-Skopje-Prishtina-Mitrovica. Railway transport was a quick way of transport and therefore the Empire wanted to benefit from it in different aspects, to improve the economical situation, but also to transport quickly its military troops in the region. There were also European governments which were interested to give credits to Ottoman Empire to build railways looking on that as a better way to have access on Ottoman markets. The Berlin Treaty of 1878 had a very important impact on the new railway corridors which were changed from previous plans, because the map of the Balkans was changed, and therefore railway priorities as well. The railway connections which were built during the Ottoman Empire modernized the transport and had a huge impact on the development of the region and made possible that the traveling to and from the capital of the Empire to be shorter than ever.


Ottoman Railway, Railways İn The Balkans, Istanbul-Vienna Railway, Thessaloniki-Mitrovica Railway


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