Archive for January 2012

Miniatur Wunderland, World’s Largest Train Layout

Advertised as the largest operating model railroad in the world  ‘Miniatur Wunderland’ covers 12,380 square feet, and features almost six miles of track and is still not complete.  Twin brothers Frederick and Gerrit Braun, 41, began work on Miniatur Wunderland in 2000 and expect completion in 2020!

The layout covers six regions, including America, Switzerland, Scandinavia, Germany and the Austrian Alps.

Although the layout is in Hamburg Germany, the U.S. is well represented  with giant models of the Rocky Mountains, Everglades, Grand-Canyon and Mount Rushmore.

It is expected to be finished in 20 20, when the layout is anticipated to cover more than square 19,376 sq  ft and feature almost 13 miles of track, by which time detailed models of parts of France, Italy and the UK would have been added

Its stats are amazing:  It’s composed of Marklin HO products exclusively, with more than 900 trains with more than 14,000 rail cars. The longest train is 46ft long.  Scenery includes 900 signals, 2,800 buildings, 4,000 cars – many with illuminated headlights….and 160,000 individually designed figures.  Thousands of pounds of steel and wood was used to construct the scenery… The 250,000 lights are rigged up to a system that mimics night and day by automatically turning them on and off. The entire system is controlled from a massive high-tech control center.

In total the layout’s construction has taken 500,000 hours and more than twenty-two million dollars to to together, the vast majority of which has come from ticket sales.

Gerrit said: “Our idea was to build a world that men, women, and children can be equally astonished and amazed in.”

Click this highlighted text to watch a four minute video of Miniatur Wunderland.