Jordan Hijaz Railway Corporation

General Information

Al-Hejaz railway is considered to be one of the landmarks of our heritage that are related to the modern history of Jordan for its connection with the Great Arab Revolution. In addition to that, one of the Hejaz Railway buildings in Ma’an had the privilege of having been the official headquarters of His Majesty late King Abdallah Bin Al-Hussein (God rest his soul). The railway also was privileged when one of its trains was used for transporting His Majesty on his journey from Ma’an to Amman.

 
A Historic Brief

 

In the past, the journeys of convoys of pilgrims on camels from Damascus to Al-Medina and Mecca used to take between 40 and 50 days, during which the pilgrims faced many dangers such as brigands’ attacks, flooding, and epidemics, in addition to suffering from the hardships of long trips. All that has provoked Sultan Abd-al-Hamid to think about establishing a railway that connects Damascus to Al-Medina and Mecca. 

 

In September 1990, Sultan Abd-al-Hamid called upon Muslims all around the world to collect donations for building a railroad between Damascus and the holy shrines, to facilitate the transportation of pilgrims. All Muslims were very enthusiastic about the call and supported it greatly.

 

The cost of the project was estimated to be five million Ottoman golden liras and they were collected as follows:

 

1.        Donations

2.        Ottoman state revenues from:

·            Selling stamps

·            Phosphate near al-Salt

·            Mineral water in the Himmah area

3.        The Ottoman government also imposed a special railroad tax on all citizens.

 

Also the following factors contributed to reducing the project’s expenses:

1.        The army members were employed in building the project.

2.        Several volunteers participated in the building process.

           

The project also faced many difficulties including:

1.        Bedouin attacks in the southern areas (who rejected the project).

2.        High temperatures.

3.        The diseases that affected workers.

 

The project started by building a narrow railway (105 cm) at an axial weight of (10.5 tons). Next to it there was a wired communication line connecting Damascus to Al-Medina through Amman at a length of (1303) km. The project was completed in 1908 where the different railway branches and subordinate stations were built. The project’s stages were completed as follows:

 

1.        Muzeireeb branch           Der’a                     September 1901

2.        Der’a branch                  Zarqa                    September 1902

3.        Zarqa branch                 Amman                  September 1903

4.        Amman branch               Ma’an                    September 1904

5.        Ma’an branch                 Tabouk                  End of 1906

6.        Tabouk branch               Mada’en Saleh        September 1907

7.        Mada’en Saleh branch      Medina                  September 1908

 

Therefore, the year 1909 witnessed the start of a new era for transporting pilgrims and passengers away from epidemics and hardships, where (147478) passengers were transported.

 

As World War I started in 1914, the aims and the political, economic and strategic considerations that played a major role in making the decision of establishing the new Hejaz railway became clear. Those aims and considerations included facilitating the movement of Ottoman troops to the west side of the Arab Peninsula without the need to cross Al-Suez Canal.

 

When the Hashemite Sharif Hussein Bin Ali (God rest his soul) fired the first bullet of the Great Arab Revolution on June 10th, 1916 declaring the start of a new era in the Arab evolution, the railway was targeted by revolutionaries especially in those areas to the south and north of the Ma’an station to obstruct the movement of the Ottoman forces.

 

·            The following administrations ran the railway in succession:

·            Turkish administration: From 1900 to 1917

·            The administration of the British mandate over Palestine represented by the Palestine railway administration until 1948

·            The Jordanian Arab Army administration from 1948 to 1950

·            The Jordanian civil administration from 1950 to 1952

 

In 1952 the Jordan Hejaz Railway Corporation was established and is running and investing the properties of the railway up to this day within Jordanian territories.

 

 

Corporation Aims:  

1.        To run and invest the properties of the Hejaz railway.

2.        To preserve the properties of the Hejaz railway.

3.        To guarantee that the trains are in motion on the railway.

4.        One of the future aims that the Corporation’s administration has set for implementation is the reactivation of the Hejaz railway. This is done by exploiting the Corporation’s stations according to their nature (whether commercial, tourist or for serving the local community), in cooperation with the municipalities of the cities where those stations are located. These activities include:

·            Establishing a museum at the Amman station to present the history of the Hejaz railway and to serve as a tourist attraction. An agreement was made with some tourist companies to include the visit of the station and museum in their touring programs.

·            An agreement was made with Al-Mafraq municipality to set up a park and restaurant at Al- Mafraq station to serve both domestic and foreign tourism.

·            Ideas and visualizations were set for the building of a restaurant and some entertainment and tourist services at the stations of Al-Jizah and Al-Qatranah.

·            There are some serious inclinations toward creating an Islamic panorama on a piece of land adjacent to Al-Jizah station (near Queen Alia International Airport), in cooperation with the Ministry of Islamic affairs. The panorama project aims at creating advanced religious tourism in Jordan by explaining the Umra and Haj procedures as well as introducing the names of the companions of Prophet Muhammad (God’s blessing and peace be upon Him) and their tombs.

 

Working Stations on the Jordan Hejaz Railway

·            The Hejaz railway extends from the Jordanian-Syrian borders at Km. 138+500 to the Abiad Station at Km. 353, with an approximate length of 215 Km.

·            The width of the railway is 105 cm.

·            The length of the iron bar used is 9 meters and its weight is 21 kg/meter of length.

·            The railway zone consists of the length of the railway and a width of 15 meters on each side from the mid point of the track, and includes the extension length of the railway over a width of 15 meters from each side starting at the mid point of the railway, except for the stations, where the zone consists of the width of 50 meters from each side of the main railway, over a length of 500 meters.

·            The railway is divided into stations. At each station there is a maintenance team whose job is to maintain a specific section of the railway.

 

Name of Station                   Telephone number

·             Al-Mafraq                       02 623 1441

·             Al-Zarqua’                      05 398 2303

·            Amman                           06 489 5414

·             Al-Qasr                          06 474 0818

·            Al-Jizah                          06 446 0124

·            Al-Qatranah                    03 239 4072

 


Contact Information

  • City
  • Amman
  • PO Box
  • 4448
  • Address
  • Amman- al-Mahatta, opposite to the Post Office, King Abdullah Street.
  • ZIP Code
  • 11131
  • Fax
  • 962-6-4894117

Location

Government Entities

  • Prime Ministry

  • Ministries image

    Ministries

  • Government Agencies image

    Government Agencies