Large-scale construction begins at Jiřího z Poděbrad metro, 10-month closure planned

The 2.5-year CZK 1.29 billion renovation project will see new elevators for barrier free access and upgraded escalators.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 02.09.2021 19:00:00 (updated on 02.09.2021) Reading time: 4 minutes

Revitalization of the Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station on the A line in Prague 3 began Sept. 1. Work will continue into 2024 and will involve temporarily closing the station for 10 months, but not until January 2023. Until then, people can continue to use the stop, save for brief temporary outages.

As part of the renovation, the station will become barrier-free. A new exit from the station will include elevators from the platform to the street level in Vinohradská Street. The station and its vestibule will also acquire more efficient lighting, wiring, and air conditioning. This work will be carried out with full metro operation most of the time, with only sporadic disruptions. The project was first announced in June 2020.

During the replacement of the escalators, though, DPP will have to close the station for 10 months, from January to October 2023, though the exact dates may change due to the geological situation.

DPP expects to complete the CZK 1.29 billion modernization of the station and put the elevators into operation at the end of February 2024.

“The revitalisation of the Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station is the largest investment project of Prague and DPP this year within the framework of repairs and reconstruction of the existing transport infrastructure in the metro. It will take 910 days or 2.5 years,” Prague Deputy Mayor Adam Scheinherr, who is also chairman of the DPP supervisory board, said in a press release.

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Escalators at Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station. (Photo: Raymond Johnston
Escalators at Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station. (Photo: Raymond Johnston

“On the basis of coordination and agreement with Prague 3 and DPP, we have combined three different projects into one, although bigger and longer, but we will do everything at once – we will build new elevators, replace escalators, repair and revitalize the station and its lobby. It is the most acceptable version for all parties. Jiřího z Poděbrad will be the 47th barrier-free station in the Prague metro after the modernization is completed. With the planned renovation of Vinohradská Street, we are also counting on barrier-free surroundings of the station and tram stops,” he added.

Work will first take place in the park at náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad between the Church of the Most Sacred Heart Church and Vinohradská Street. After the construction site has been established and the topsoil has been covered up, an archaeological survey will be carried out.

Train arriving at Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station. (Photo: Raymond Johnston)
Train arriving at Jiřího z Poděbrad metro station. (Photo: Raymond Johnston)

At the same time, the contractors – Strabag and AŽD Praha – will start excavation work for the elevator shafts. For technical reasons, two elevators will be needed with a transfer partway in the journey.

The first shaft will reach a depth of 31 meters. Work will then continue with for a nearly 60-meter-long transfer corridor above the platform ceiling. Another shaft another 19-meter shaft will be excavated for a second pair of elevators. The total depth of the shafts and related work will be more or less 50 meters below the surface of the square.

The elevators connecting the platform and the transfer corridor will be at the opposite side of the station from the escalators. The kiosk of the upper station of the lifts will be located in the park next to the pavement in Vinohradská Street, near the existing Jiřího z Poděbrad tram stop in the direction of the center.

Prague 3 Mayor Jiří Ptáček said the district has three metro stops, but so far none is barrier-free.

“I know that this is a matter of concern not only for passengers with disabilities, but also for parents with strollers and many other groups for whom the escalator is uncomfortable or even impossible. The new elevator is therefore a welcome change,” he added.

Petr Witowski, chairman and CEO of DPP, said most of the work at Jiřího z Poděbrad will take place in non-public parts of the station and will have minimal impact on passengers or the public. “As soon as the breakthrough to the station is approaching, we will start replacing the escalators at the same time. However, we will have to close the station for the necessary period of 10 months and trains will only pass through it,” he said.

The shelters will be removes as part of the renovation of náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad. (Photo: Raymond Johnston)
The shelters will be removes as part of the renovation of náměstí Jiřího z Poděbrad. (Photo: Raymond Johnston)

“We will continue to invest in the existing metro stations. In about a month we will complete the modernization of the Anděl – Na Knížecí vestibule and open it to passengers, and later this year we would like to start replacing the ceiling slab and revitalizing the vestibule of Florenc metro station. In addition, we are working intensively in project preparation for barrier-free accessibility and modernization of other stations,” he added.

Ondřej Novák, chairman of the board of directors of Strabag, said he hopes that both the geology and the local conditions will be favorable during the excavation so all the construction work can go in accordance with the timetable.

The revitalization work will fix leaks and repair damaged tiles and paving, completely replace all air conditioning and cable ducts, and remove the existing shelters. The station and its lobby will get LED lighting to replace the existing lighting. A new unified system to enable remote control and monitoring of the metro lighting will be installed.

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