The International Steam Pages

Steam in Shanghai, 2002

Don't shout it too loudly but there is still steam in the heart of modern China. Simon Colbeck reports (with Initial comments from Bruce Evans in italics).:


The following sightings were noted on a trip to the Shanghai area in April 2002.

27/04/02 "Ye olde Station Restaurant"

This Restaurant has two carriages as part of its eating accommodation. One of which is claimed to date from 1899 and formed part of some sort of Royal train. Anyway between the two standard gauge carriages is a narrow gauge C4 class loco. It is in good condition, but devoid of any numbers. A request to examine in more detail to look for any works details was denied. Note none of the above vehicles are visible from outside the Restaurant, address is as follows;
201 North Cao Xi road. Shanghai, Tel 64272233.

28/04/02 Shanghai - Nanjing.

Took train T714 Shanghai 0800 arrive Nanjing 1058.
Return T708 Nanjing 1747 - Shanghai 2040.
Modern double deck stock with DF 11 haulage.
The following steam sightings were made.

Xinzhanzhen approx one hour from Shanghai
JS 6356 in steam shunting an exchange yard with a factory. This is located to the south side of the line.

Zhenjiang approx 60km east of Nanjing

Here to the north east of the station were seen 2 JS class in a yard. One was in steam; the other wasn't but appeared serviceable. (He reports two JSs at Zhenjiang and speculates about a local railway here. Well, there is a Local Railway linking Zhenjiang with the town of Dagang about 25km east. We have information saying that there were two steam locos owned by the railway at the end of 1998. I suspect he saw the locos owned by the line.BE)

About 5km west of Zhenjiang at a location not marked in Quail, which I think, was called "Lubando" JS 6210 was in steam in the yard, south of the line. From "Lubando" there appeared to be either a branch or a long siding head south from the line. (JSs 6210 at Lubando(?) and 6356 at Xinzhanzhen both look as if they could be industrial rather than China Rail. I do not have previous records for them from this area and the numbers do not appear to slot into the batches for JSs previously reported for Shanghai Bureau. (We do not have anything like a comprehensive idea of the Shanghai Bureau JS number batches, though - the area was never visited that much. BE)

29/04/02 Shanghai Number 5 steelworks.

This is part of the huge Baosteel group, which has many sites in the Shanghai area. After much negotiation a limited visit to the furnace area was undertaken. The unit is small by Chinese standards. Both narrow gauge and standard gauge railways serve the arc furnaces. The narrow gauge is operated by small single cab outside frame 0-6-0 diesel loco's.The standard gauge operates a fleet of SY's. SY 1576 and SY 0880 were in steam on day of visit, both shunting the furnace area. SY 1744 was spare on shed. No entry to the shed was gained, but it looked too big for just 2 locos. Does anyone have the full roster for here? (Shanghai No 5 Steelworks has been reported to me privately before but only SYs 1576 and 1744 were reported then. BE)

SY 1576


It's good to see there's still some steam in the Shanghai, an area that doesn't appear to have been reported on for ages.

It wasn't clear whether the locos seen around the Zhenjiang were the last remnants of CNR steam being used for shunting or whether there is a local railway in this area, more investigation is required.

The Baosteel group must have more steam tucked away in the many sites they have in the Shanghai area, but accessing them is going to be hard.

Many thanks to Quantum Wang, without whose assistance I wouldn't have seen anything !

Rob Dickinson