Friends of Latin American Railways

News Bolivia


Cochabamba - Aiquile

Cochabamba main station has got 1435 mm gauge tracks for the new Urban Railway. For this reason the metre-gauge line to Aiquile will get a station further south, which should be built in 2022. A new turntable for the railbus was already built. But it is very questionable if traffic will be reintroduced all the line down to Aquile.
(Source: Volta o Trem 25-3)

Passenger service in Santa Cruz de la Sierra

The Eastern Railway out of Santa Cruz de la Sierra has not reintroduced passenger services until December 2021, they have been withdrawn because of the Corona-pandemic.
(Source: Volta o Trem 25-3)


Arica - Visviri - Viacha - Oruro

For the first time after 16 years, May 07, 2021, a loaded freight train arrived from Arica at the border station Visviri after a journey of 2 days. At Visviri a Bolivian Locomotive was waiting to forward the train, charged with 466 tonnes of steel-coils on 8 wagons, to Oruro. The initiative for reopening of the line came from a Bolivian soya exporter, which want to convey soy-beans for export to Peru and Ecuador by train. May 08 saw truck drivers dumping tonnes of earth on the rails at the entry of Viacha to avoid the train to pass. They fear to loose tonnage to the railway.
(Source: Volta o Trem 25-1)


Corona Update

Due to Covid-19 train services remain suspended on the An-dean network. No information from the Eastern network.
(Source: Volta o Trem 24-7)


Tupiza – Villazón

Floods interrupted again the railway between Tupiza and Villazón. A limited service with a railbus was then offered twice weekly by FCA between Tupiza and Uyuni. Later the nationwide halt of all travel, due to the coronavirus, brought this service also to a halt.
(Source: Volta o Trem 24-3)


Light Rail Train at cochabamba

The first Light Rail Train built by Stadler at Minsk arrived at Cochabamba and test runs have started over the already completed sections of this new railway.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-6)

Railway related Park in La Paz

In the yard of the former La Paz Central station state president Morales inaugurated a Railway related park.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-6)


Three new Diesel-Locomotives SALI

Ferroviaria Andina has put three Diesel locomotives into operation. The locomotives are of type SALI from the swiss manufacturer Stadler. The locomotives can develop their full power even at an altitude of 5,000 meters above sea level.
(Source: Ferroviaria Andina)


Oruro - San Pedro

A new service is commencing 31 August 2019. It is a suburban service over 6 km from Oruro to San Pedro to the North. Daily between 07.00 and 22.00 10 trains will operate. Rolling-stock is a refurbished railbus (ex roadbus). This service originates from a private initiative and funding was by private donors, the FCA Railway, neighborhood initiatives and the city of Oruro. In a public contest the name of „Qamaqi“ (Andean Fox) was selected. In a second phase a second railbus should be made available and the line extended.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-5)

Oruro - Machacamarca

From 1 September 2019 a new Tourist Train will run every first Sunday of the month between Oruro and Machacamarca. There are round-trip tickets or complete tourist packages including meals and sightseeing available.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-5)

Oruro - Villazón

Trains to Villazón are running again since 26 July 2019. Rebuilding the line took longer than anticipated.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-5)

Corumbá - Baurú

Mato Grosso do Sul state forced freight operator Rumo to reopen the Corumbá – Baurú Railway from 1 September 2019 on. The reason is the transport of 1,5million tonnes of nitrogen products from Bolivia to São Paulo. Authorities of the state and Rumo inspected the railway and repaired it where necesary at the expense of the state, so freight trains can run at low speed. Rumo will now transport on behalf of the state at least 300‘000 tonnes, the remaining goods will probably continue by road trucks.
(Source: Volta o Trem 23-5)


Transcontinental Railway

It has now been established that the planned transcontinental railway from Santos in Brasil via Puerto Quijarro, Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Cochabamba and Viacha to the peruvian port of Ilo will be built in metre gauge and that existing railways will be integrated in the route. The climb on the eastern slopes of the Andes will require some longer sections with racks. Whether the western section down to Ilo will also require a rack railway still has to be determined. Chinese and Brasilian contractors are being considered to carry out the work.
(Source: Local media and Estado de Mato Grosso do Sul)


Infrastructure FCA

Because the damage caused by severe flooding was quite extensive, track reconstruction work took longer than expected. By November 2018, trains were able to reach Tupiza, but the section Tupiza – Villazón will only be reopened in January 2019.
The damaged bridge between Yotala and El Tejar, which caused a line closure between Potosí and El Tejar (Sucre), will be rebuilt, however, works are progressing slowly and rail operations are expected to resume in April or May 2019 only.
The Cochabamba – Aiquile service was withdrawn back in September 2018; the reason for this is not entirely clear. The single operational railbus had been comprehensively overhauled during August and carried out a test run between Cochabamba and Vila Vila. Communities along the route demand an explanation from Ferrocarril Andino SA why the withdrawal happened.
(Source: lokale Medien, FCA, Crónica Ferroviária)


Infrastructure FCA

The infrastructure of the FCA Andean network is slowly recovering from heavy floodings that occurred in January and February 2018. The main route Oruro – Villazón has been comprehensively refurbished in the affected regions (Atocha, Tupiza), and flood protection measures have been introduced at various locations. Traffic to Villazón is expected to resume at the end of December 2018.
(Source: Fahrplancenter News, local media, FCA)


Uyuni – Villazón

Ferrocarril Andino and the Department of Potosí are rebuilding commonly the line from Uyuni to Villazón which suffered major damages by floods. Major protection measures are taken against future floodings and passenger and freight services to Villazón may restart in december 2018.
(Source: Volta o Trem 22-8)

Level crossing in El Alto rebuilt

The City of El Alto together with Ferrocarril Andino is rebuilding the biggest level-crossing of the city near the departure point of the monthly running tourist train to Guaquí.
(Source: Volta o Trem 22-8)


Oruro - Villazón

Train services between Oruro and Villazón are interrupted at least until October 2018 because of flood damage over some sections of the line.
(Source: Volta o Trem 22-5)


The Brazilian Government realized the value of the 1356 km long railway line from Baurú to Corumbá, together with the line from Santos via Botucatú to Baurú, which has also metre-gauge. The entire corridor has been renamed TransAmericana and the freight concessionaire Rumo Logística has been forced to invest in this line to get an extensión of its conces-sion. The government plans first to rehabilitate the existing metre-gauge corridor Brazil-Bolivia-Argentina-Chile, instead to build a completely new Transcontinental Railway. Many com-panies have shown interest to participate in the reconstruction of the existing line, including some from China. On the other side the Argentine government stopped all works on the rehabilitation of the Pericó – Embarcación – Pocitos line, which caused protests in Salta province, to divert the funds to pro-jects at Rosario and Buenos Aires. Interests to rehabilitate the Salta – Socompa line faded also away. Under these circumstances Brazil hopes that Bolivia will finally build its internal connecting Railway between the Eastern and Andean networks.
(Source: Volta o Trem 22-5)


Ferrocarril Arica – La Paz

The Arica – La Paz Railway operates 2018 the Arica-Poconchile Tourist Train 4 times in January, 3 times each in February and March, 2 times each in April and May and once in June 2018. New are now also trips from Arica to Central. Central at Km 69,8 is at the foot of the former rack section of this railway and the tourist train will reach this destination 16 Dec. 2017; 27 Jan., 24 Feb.; 24 March and 23 June 2018. Further informations
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-9)


Cochabamba - Aiquile

The railbus service between Cochabamba and Aiquile has been reinstated, after rehabilitation of the older railbus which was stored at Cochabamba station for a long time.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-8)

Potosí – El Tejar (Sucre)

Due to a damaged bridge between Yotala and El Tejar the railbus Potosí – El Tejar is not ruinning until further notice. Repairs on the bridge already commenced.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-8)

Uyuni – Avaroa

The Uyuni – Avaroa local train is no longer running. There is a possibility to charter a coach which will be added to the regular freight train.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-8)


Cochabamba - Aiquile

At Cochabamba dismantling of the station tracks started to make space for construction of the electrified suburban railway. This means the definitive suspension of the railbus service to Aiquile.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-7)


Dismantling of Tracks

All tracks at Cochabamba railway station have been lifted and dismantled in preparation for the construction of the new urban railway system in and around this city. Re-instatement of the railbus connection to Aiquile will, therefore, not be possible anymore.

Villazón - La Quiaca

Empresa Ferroviaria Andina (FCA) and the Argentinian province of Jujuy have signed an agreement which evisages the re-opening of the Villazón (Boliva) to La Quiaca (Argentina) railway line. FCA will rehabilitate the track to the border and also the bridge spanning the border river, while the Jujuy province will have to refurbish La Quiaca station and the access to the bridge.


Pericó - Pocitos

The Argentine Government decided to rehabilitate the C-15 line from Pericó (Salta Province) to Pocitos on the border to Bolivia to reinstate international freight services between Argentina and Bolivia. No passenger services are planned on the C-15 line.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-5)

Arica - Poconchile - Bolivia

he directorate of Chilean state railways EFE is planning to reinstate first freight services from Arica to Bolivia and at a later date, if possibly no later than 2019 also a tourist oriented passenger service over the entire line from Arica to Bolivia is planned. During the July holidays tourist trains between Arica and Poconchile (34 km) operated again successfully, bookings exceeded 90%.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-5)


Cochabamba – Aiquile

Confirmation comes from the local press that the railbus service between Cochabamba and Aiquile remains suspended until further notice due to the lack of useable rolling-stock. The only available rail-bus was heavily damaged May 18, 2017 when it collided with a truck.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-4)


Aiquile – Cochabamba

May 18, 2017 the railbus which operates from Aiquile to Cochabamba collided with a truck shortly after departure from Aiquile. The railbus overturned and was heavily damaged. Fortunately none of the 18 passengers was hurt. It is unknown for how many time the line will be out of service since the railway company FCA gives no information.
(Source: Volta o Trem 21-3)


Tramway Santa Cruz de la Sierra

A project for building a tramway network at Santa Cruz de la Sierra has been announced early in April 2015.
(Source: Volta o Trem 19-4)


Arica - Puquíos - Viacha

Commercial freight traffic will start in mid-April 2015, after a disruption of over 10 years. Initially, trains will run between Arica and Puquíos and some 8 months later, trains are expected to regularly reach Viacha in Bolivia. The railway has sourced 2 new diesel locomotives and 20 multi-use freight cars.
A media statement from management points out that freight traffic has priority, but at a later stage passenger and tourist train operations are not ruled out. The railway now operates under the stewardship of the Chilean state railway EFE.
(Source: Aricaldia)


Arica – La Paz

In November Ferrocarril Arica – La Paz received 2 new diesel-locomotives for an amount of US$3,5mio. The new locos have engines of 1850 hp and new technologies help to reduce fuel consumption.
(Source: Volta o Trem 18-9)


Empresa Ferroviaria Oriental

Passenger train service on the east Bolivian network has been curtailed. While there is just one weekly round-trip on the southern line (Santa Cruz de la Sierra – Yacuíba) – a mixed train for passengers and freight – the timetable between Santa Cruz de la Sierra and Puerto Quijarro at the border to Brazil has been considerably thinned. The Expreso Oriental and the Ferrobus do three round-trips each per week. No services run on Saturdays, and the Tren Regional (all-stopper) has ceased to run altogether.
Completion of the road between Santa Cruz de la Sierra and Puerto Suárez had a devastating impact on passenger figures. There were 547'000 passengers carried in 2007 while in 2013 there were just 78'883 passengers using the trains. Freight traffic, on the other hand, increased some 17% from 2012 to 2013, reaching the figure of 1'535'306 tons.
(Source: FCO)

Areal cableway La Paz - El Alto

At the end of April 2014, state president Evo Morales inaugurated the highest aerial cableway in the world. The line connects La Paz with the suburb of El Alto, located at about 4000m above sea level. It is composed of 3 sections with an overall length of 10,7 km and resting on 77 pylons. The 443 cabins, carrying 10 passengers each, provide a capacity of 3000 passengers per hour in either direction. This will take some pressure off the congested roads. Starting point is at the former main railway station of La Paz. It was built in record time by the Austrian manufacturer Doppelmayr and cost US$ 235 Mio.
(Source: Fahrplancenter correspondents)



November 8, 2013 FCA resumed passenger train services to Villazón. The services have been withdrawn for more than a year because a bridge had to be repaired after it collapsed.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-8)


Arica – La Paz

Over a year ago the Andean Railway company reintroduced a passenger service between Viacha and Charaña on the Bolivian section of the Arica – La Paz Railway. A home-built railbus is running three times a week in each direction.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-4)

Atocha - Villazón

End 2013 the line to Villazón will be back in operation. Train services South of Atocha have been suspended due to a damaged bridge.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-4)


Freight Wagons

Former FEVE of Spain sold 80 flat wagons to Empresa Ferroviaria Oriental in Bolivia. The wagons will arrive at the port of Arica and from there be coneyed by rail over the Arica-Viacha-Antofagasta-Socompa-Güemes-Santa Cruz de la Sierra line.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-3)


Empresa Ferroviaria Andina SA

All trains south of Atocha were withdrawn effective 30th January 2013. This affects the trains “Wara Wara del Sur” and “Expreso del Sur” which keep running between Oruro, Uyuni and Atocha.
The tourist train from El Alto to Guaquí will run monthly in 2013, operating on the second Sunday of each month with a departure time of 0800 from El Alto. The train has stopovers in both Tiwanacu and Guaquí.
(Source: Empresa Ferroviaria Andina SA)

Empresa Ferroviaria Oriental SA

Train service on the eastern network has been slightly reduced. The following services are currently operated:
Santa Cruz de la Sierra – Quijarro Local train, 3 times per week
Santa Cruz de la Sierra – Quijarro Rápido, 3 times per week
Santa Cruz de la Sierra – Quijarro, Ferrobus, 3 times per week
Santa Cruz de la Sierra – Yacuíba, Mixto, once a week
(Source: Empresa Ferroviaria Oriental SA)


Tupiza - Villazón

Empresa Ferroviaria Andina suspended all trains between Tupiza and Villazón from January 30, 2013 on. The reason for this step is unkonwn.
(Source: Volta o Trem 17-1)



The city of Cochabamba plans to relocate the main railway station and to put a suburban train service into operation.
(Source: Volta o Trem 16-6)