Fort railway station

Fort Railway Station

Passengers and trains at Colombo Fort Station
Coordinates 6°56'01.40"N 79°51'03.14"E
Owned by Sri Lanka Railways
Line(s) Main Line
Coastal Line
Tracks 11
Connections Buses, via Central Bus Stand, Pettah
Other information
Station code FOT
Opened 1908[1]
Electrified no[2]
Passengers 0.2 million daily[1]

Fort Railway Station is a major rail hub in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The station is served by Sri Lanka Railways, with many inter-city and commuter trains entering each day. Fort Station is the main rail gateway to central Colombo; it is the terminus of most intercity trains in the country.[3]


Fort Station is significant for its Victorian-era architecture

When the railways first opened in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) in 1864, trains terminated at Colombo Terminus Station, a now-retired station near Maradana. The earliest station to be called Fort was a small station, built in 1877 when the Coast Line was built. This original station sat on the site of present-day Secretariat Halt just west of today's Fort Station.[4]

The present Fort Station was opened in 1917, as a new central station for Colombo. This has been constructed similar to Manchester Victoria station.[5] The station was built on land reclaimed from the Beira Lake. This project was part of a scheme started in 1906 to reorganize the railway within Colombo, where Colombo Terminus Station was closed and replaced by the new Maradana Station. This was ceremonially opened by G.P. Green who was the General Manager at CGR.[5] Fort was added in 1917 to serve the city centre.[4]



Fort Station is in the heart of the city, located next to Colombo Fort and Pettah and close to the meeting points of the A1 and A4 highways. The station provides access to businesses and offices in Colombo Fort, as well as the markets at Pettah.

Fort Station is a couple kilometres away from Maradana Station, the other major rail station in Colombo.

Transport connections

In addition to providing connection between the many trains that serve the station, Fort Station also provides connections to bus services through the Central Bus Stand in Pettah. Colombo Secretariat Station, the city terminus for the Airport Express, is located to the west of the station, with no direct pedestrian connection.


Intercity train at Fort
Passengers embarking and alighting at Fort

The station is served from the east by the Main line, which leads to several other major routes in Sri Lanka's railway network. Most of these trains terminate at Fort Station. The station is served to the south-west by the Coastal line, leading to Galle and Matara.

Fort station is also a hub for commuter rail within the Colombo metropolis.

Inter-city trains

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.
Route[6][7] Frequency[6]
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana Vavuniya Jaffna – Kankesanturai 10 Daily (11 on Saturdays)
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Polgahawela – Kurunegala - Maho 4 Daily (3 on weekends)
Anuradhapura – Maho – Kurunegala – Polgahawela – Maho – Ragama Colombo Maradana – Colombo Fort – Panadura - Galle Matara 1 Daily
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana Batticaloa
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana Trincomalee
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Polgahawela – Peradeniya - Nawalapitiya - Hatton - Nanu Oya - Pattipola - Ella - Badulla 3 Daily
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Polgahawela – Peradeniya - Kandy 9 Daily (11 on weekends)
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Polgahawela – Peradeniya - Kandy - Nawalapitiya - Hatton - Nanu Oya - Pattipola - Ella - Badulla 2 Daily
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Polgahawela 1 Daily
Colombo Maradana – Colombo Fort – Panadura - Galle Matara 8 Daily
Colombo Maradana – Colombo Fort – Panadura - Galle 5 Daily (4 on Saturdays)
Colombo Fort – Panadura - Galle Matara 1 Daily
Colombo Fort Colombo Maradana – Ragama - Negombo – Chilaw - Bangadeniya - Puttalam

Commuter and local trains[8]

Route Frequency
Towards Panadura 25
Towards Veyangoda 39
Towards Ja Ela 14
Kelani Valley Line 8


Preceding station Sri Lanka Railways[3] Following station
Terminus   Yal Devi   Vavuniya
  Udaya Devi   Batticaloa
  Unnamed intercity expresses   Kandy, Batticaloa,
Vavuniya, Galle
Terminus   Udarata Menike   Maradana
  Podi Menike   Maradana
  Tikiri Menike   Maradana
  Senkadagala Menike   Maradana
Terminus   Muthu Kumari   Maradana
Bambalapitiya   Rajarata Rajina   Maradana
Bambalapitiya   Ruhunu Kumari   Maradana
  Samudra Devi   Maradana
  Galu Kumari   Maradana
  Sagarika   Maradana
Slave Island   Commuter Rail   Maradana

Station layout

The station has a through-station layout, despite being the terminus for many services. This allows most platforms to serve both terminating and through trains. The platforms are oriented east-west. The ticket hall is to the north of the platforms.


Ben Kingsley (left), Ben Cross (centre) and Chandran Rutnam (right) at Fort Railway Station, during shooting of the Rutnam-directed film A Common Man

The station was used as a film location in the film A Common Man directed by Chandran Rutnam and starring Ben Cross and Ben Kingsley.

See also

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Colombo Fort railway station.


  1. 1 2 "Colombo Fort Railway Station". Sri Lanka Railways. Retrieved 2012-02-06.
  2. "Daily News". IESL proposes railway electrification project. 2010-12-25.
  3. 1 2 "Sri Lanka Railways Timetable"
  4. 1 2 Hyatt, D. An Overview of the Development of the Sri Lanka Railway 2009.
  5. 1 2 Rail 2000. Sri Lanka Railway. p. 203.
  6. 1 2 "Train Schedule". Government Information Centre. Government of Sri Lanka. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
  7. "The Rail Routes of Sri Lanka". Model Railroad Club. Retrieved 7 October 2012.
  8. "Search Train". Retrieved 7 September 2014. External link in |website= (help)

Coordinates: 6°56′01″N 79°51′03″E / 6.93361°N 79.85083°E / 6.93361; 79.85083

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 10/3/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.