Finland - Tram services over obscure routes
Some tram systems advertise their depot workings and enable one to ascertain the regular use by passenger-carrying services of junctions or sections of line that do not otherwise see public service. This occasional series lists such services that have come to notice. While the data for each system is current at the date stated, it is not the intention to endeavour to keep every entry up to date at every service change - the listing serves as a guide for travellers as to the sort of services they can look out for, enabling them to check current published timetable material at their time of travel.
To assist in tracing services, the route and/or timetable number for each journey is shown in parentheses, e.g. (1). Days of operation are in English notation (respectively: Su, M, T, W, Th, F, S) - plus "O" for only, "X" for excepted. Su (Sundays) usually includes public holidays in mainland Europe - but check locally.
Listings for other systems throughout the world - in the same format as shown below (please include date of timetable validity) - will always be welcomed.
System map as at October 2023 here but note for access this required a VPN location in Finland.
Retained as a guide, some of the following were noted in use from 4 March 2019.
Kauppakorkeakoulut via Kamppi to Simonkatu
This connecting line has seen lengthy periods with no service, but is in use by diverted route 2 due to a long term closure of the direct line from Ooppera to Lasipalatsi from 2 October 2023 to allegedly 16 June 2024 as per the Network Map
Meilahden sairaala loop
The October 2023 Tram map shows this loop in passenger service by route 7 from 2 October 2023
[From Linnanmäki (etelä)] via west to north curve to Urheilutalo
No scheduled use in October 2023. In use in March 2019 by routes 1 & 8 on Diversion
[Urheilutalo -] along Sturenkatu via Roineentie stop and west to north curve to Hattulantie
As illustrated more clearly on the Urbanrail map, the line north east from Brahenkatu has reverted to no passenger use by October 2023. Was in use as described by Route 1 temporarily reverting to how it ran prior to the 2017 changes, plus by route 7 diverted away from Sörnäinen.
As illustrated more clearly on the Urbanrail map, this section beyond Hattulantie again reverts to no scheduled use. In 2019, this, as well as all but the Hattulantie curve in the above entry, was used by routes 6/6T & 8 on diversion.
But it is believed trams from or to Koskelan or Vallila depots would use this section in entering or leaving service for routes 1 and 7. In earlier years, trams coming off service ran advertised to either depot but there is no indication in published timetables for 2017 of any such workings - trams are advertised only to the last stopping place on their normal route. Reports of any depot workings that do carry passengers over this section would be welcomed by the compilers.
Kauppatori: west to north curve (giving west to north run from Unioninkatu to Pohjoisesplanadi)
Spårakoff pub tram (see below). Note that there is an anti-clockwise one-way system between Senaatintori and Kauppatori used by Route 2.
Kauppiaankatu - Katajanokan terminaali loop
Route 5 operates all days but with significant gaps in service, [which varies by season] - primarily related to connections with Viking Line sailings.
Kalevankatu north-east to south-east [Hietalahti]
Due to route 6 being extended from stop Hietalahdentori to Eiranranta on 6 April 2021, for an unknown period this complete street loop to reach Kalevankatu had no regular service. However in the October 2023 map route 1T is shown using this street loop but continuing to Länsiterminaali 2.
When used before, some Route 6's did not run through but terminated on this anti-clockwise loop via Kalevankatu until about 13:15, then 19:00 & 21:15, so the JP/timetable should be checked in case any 1T's do this entry.
Vallila - Koskelan halliin (Koskela tram depot)
The depot is at the end of a branch about 1.5 km long off the north end of routes 6 and 8. In earlier years, trams coming off service ran advertised to the depot but there is no indication in published timetables from 2017 of any such workings to or from this depot. Reports of any depot workings that do carry passengers over otherwise unserved lines or curves to this depot would be welcomed by the compilers.
Erottaja - Kolmikulma turning circle
This anti-clockwise turning circle via Yrjönkatu and Uudenmaankatu has no regular service, but is often used during engineering works (such as was the case during July and August 2017 by route 7) to provide a turn-back facility for a route that is partially blocked.
The large street loop previously used in both directions was only used anti-clockwise from a few years ago by then route 9, but a change from 17 October 2022 meant two curves on its eastern side previously with no regular use could be travelled on route 2. Conversely Radanrakentajantie east to north and Pasila north to east were no longer in use from that date. This could all change again when a new route built further east commences running sometimes in 2024 as it will terminate at Pasila. Some of these curves were previously only used when route 7 was blocked by engineering work west of Pasila (such as was the case during July and August 2017).
SpåraKOFF Pub Tram
The SpåraKOFF Pub Tram (scroll down to Spårakoff and click the box Reitti ja aikataulu on that page) has operated an anti-clockwise circuit starting from the non-passenger Mikonkatu loop (Railway Square - on east side of main railway station; its only pick-up point). The website 2019 map does not indicate direction but if anti-clockwise it will be via Kaarlenkatu, Linnanmäki, Ooperatalo, Ylioppilastalo, Kauppatori and Kansallisarkisto and use the following lines and curves which have no other passenger service in this order:
- The loop and North to East curve out of Mikonkatu
- East to south curve at Oopera from Nordenskiödinkatu into Mannerheimintie
- Inside loop at Kauppatori (giving west to east run from Unioninkatu to Pohjoisesplanadi) (as does vintage tram)
- South to north curve near Senaatintori from Katariinankatu to Snellmaninkatu across Aleksanterinkatu
- East to south curve at Snellmaninkatu from Liisankatu into Kaisaniemenkatu (opposite direction to vintage tram)
- Loop off Kaisaniemenkatu via Vilhonkatu to return to Mikonkatu (completes anti-clockwise circuit here but there is usually a gap between pick up and set down stops)
2019 service: Not every day between 3 May - 14 September, mainly hourly from 14:00 to 20:00 (also earlier and later journeys as advertised in peak summer). Departures have been known to leave early if the tram was full. 2019 fare €12.
The Oy Stadin Ratikat's vintage tram operates a clockwise circuit from Kauppatori (although it is briefly anti-clockwise there) via the route shown on their website during the course of which it uses the following lines and curves which have no other passenger service: 2019 Fare €6
- South to east curve at Snallmaninkatu from Kaisaniemenkatu into Liisankatu (opposite direction to SpåraKOFF Pub Tram)
- East to south curve at Senaatintori from Aleksanterinkatu into Unioninkatu
- Platform loop at Kauppatori (giving west to east run from Unioninkatu to Pohjoisesplanadi) (as does SpåraKOFF Pub Tram)
2019 service: SSuO, 18 May - 1 September (but see their website for additions and exceptions such as Mid-summer weekend), at 10:00 and every 20 to 30 mins until 17:00. During bad weather the service may be cancelled.