Prague mulling the extension of tram service into Stromovka park

About 250 meters of tracks would need to be restored so trams could reach the Vozovná restaurant in the middle of the park.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 01.02.2023 08:32:00 (updated on 01.02.2023) Reading time: 3 minutes

Prague is considering restoring tram service into Stromovka park by extending the existing tracks to reach a restaurant in the park. The idea has sparked mixed reactions among residents of Prague 7 over social media.

Currently, the tracks end at Planetárium Praha, but the stop is only used for the historical tram 41 line on weekends when that line is in operation. A wooden rail is mounted on the end of the tracks. The tracks used to extend further, but service into the park was canceled in 1942, and some tracks were removed two years later.

The last currently active stop for regular weekday tram service is Výstaviště at the entrance of Stromovka. A loop is there so trams can turn around.

The extension of the line would make Stromovka more accessible to the elderly and people with limited mobility, the Prague 7 district said when asked about the plan by a local resident.

The plan is in the early stages, but the tram would go closer to Vozovná, a restaurant in the middle of the park. What is now the restaurant had been a tram depot administrative building built in 1910. It was left to fall into ruins in the 1930s when the rest of the depot was torn down.

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The ruin was renovated into a modern-looking restaurant in 2008–09. The current tracks would need to be extended by about 250 meters to reach the restaurant.

Residents question the need for the extension

Prague 7 resident Jiří Hladký posted the news on a Facebook group dedicated to the Letná area. The private group has 39,000 members. Hladký said that the Prague 7 administration told him it would inform the public when more details are known. Hladký is concerned over the fate of a playground in the area,

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A representative of Prague 7 told him that part of the playground would have to be “shifted” to accommodate the tram. Prague Deputy Mayor Adam Scheinherr confirmed to daily Metro that an extension of the tracks is being considered, but denied that the playground would be affected. He said the extension would end short of Vozovná and be a safe distance from the children's playground.

Hladký on Facebook also questioned whether the demand justifies the intervention into the park. “What research, study, or reasoning leads to the fact that you assume that elderly people or people with limited mobility want to take a tram to a children's playground or the Vozovná restaurant?” he asked.

Is Vozovná really so inaccessible that you have to take the tram?” he added.

One person on the Facebook group said that extending the tracks was a solution to a problem that didn’t exist. Another was concerned for children and dogs playing near tram tracks. Others pointed out that people go to the park specifically to walk, and not ride a tram. But a few people were in favor as well.

A return to history?

Prague 7 representatives said no definite decision has been made. “The plan that is currently being discussed by the Prague Transit Company (DPP) and would represent a return of trams to the original historical line," Prague 7 spokesman Martin Vokuš told the daily Metro.

DPP spokeswoman Aneta Řehková also mentioned the historical aspect and told the tabloid Blesk that the restoration of the tracks would not impose any greater burden on the park, just like the already implemented use of the Planetárium Praha stop by historic tram 41 has had little impact.

“It would not be a highly frequented connection and the cars would also drive very slowly in this section,” she said.

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