DIRE DAWA STATION
Gallery N°11 : Dire Dawa station (C.F.E. period)
Gallery N°12 : Dire Dawa station (C.D.E. period)
Faced with considerable technical difficulties during construction, the Line would not go through Harrar as had been expected.
Emperor Menelik authorised the building of the first section's terminus at Addis-Harrar, which was reached in December 1902. In order to avoid confusion between Addis Ababa and Addis Harrar, the engineers of the Company named the station "Dire Daouah", after a neighbouring village.
During the Italian occupation the local Italian government decreed that signs at all stations on the Ethiopian line bore the Italian versions of their names. Therefore Dire-Dawa became known as "Dire-Daua". The British called it Dire Dawa, but on the front wall of the station the name still appears with its original French spelling of "Dire Daoua".
Originally built as a wooden structure, like the workshops, the station was demolished and rebuilt in 1910.
At the Dire Dawa complex were:
- Technical installations.
- General workshops: forge, foundry, boilerworks, carpentry…
- A diesel centre.
- Technical offices.
- An equipment depot.
- A supply warehouse.
- A service and repair area for passenger carriages and freight trucks.
- The Company hospital, for use by all the Company workers and their families.
- A nursing training centre for all the station dispensaries.
- A training centre for the use of all equipment.
- A technical training centre for the Company personnel.