Demodara Railway Station and Loop

Demodara Railway Station
Demodara Railway Station (Sinhala: දෙමෝදර දුම්රිය ස්ථානය හා දුම්රිය ගැටය) is the fourth last railway station on the Mail Line situated in Badulla District, Sri Lanka. The station is notable for the spiral rail line at this location, popularly known as the Demodara Getaya or Demodara Loop.

When was the first train arrived at the station?
Located 276.8 km (172 mi) away from Colombo, the station remains 911.61 m (2990.84 ft.) above sea level. It has three tracks 320 m (1049.87 ft.) in length. The length of the main platform is 112 m (367.45 ft.) and it has three good sheds with platforms, a weighbridge and a crane. The first train arrived at the station on 21 March 1921 (Ellis, 1994).

Demodara loop
The spiral rail line known as the Demodara Loop has made this station notable and famous in the country. The loop is said to have been constructed following the ideas of the project engineers including D. J. Wimalasurendra (b.1874-d.1953). It was constructed to achieve the level difference by maintaining 1 in 44 (one foot per 44 feet), the maximum allowable gradient in Sri Lanka Railways (Ellis, 1994). The rail line passes under itself via a 900 m long spiral to emerge from a tunnel directly beneath the Demodara station. The tunnel situated 277.64 km and 277.81 km posts is 126.79 m (416 ft) in length.

A protected monument
The Office building situated at the Demodara Railway Station in Demodara village in the Grama Niladhari Division of Nawulla in Ella Divisional Secretary’s Division is an archaeological protected monument, declared by a government notification published on 1 February 2023.

#) extends its gratitude to Lalith Kekulthotuwage for providing the necessary photographs required for this article. All the photos are published here with the permission of the author.

1) Ellis, R., 1994. Sri Lanka by Rail. Bradt Travel Guides. p.130.
2) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka: Extraordinary. No: 2317/57. 1 February 2023. p.9A.

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This page was last updated on 4 November 2023

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