Prague scraps ambitious plans for cable car over the Vltava River

Environmental officials said that excessively high construction costs and damage to Prague 6 and 8's aesthetic make the plan inviable.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 21.02.2024 11:28:00 (updated on 21.02.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

Officials from the Environmental Protection Department (EIA) of Prague have rejected an ambitious project to build a cable car from the capital’s Podbaba area in Prague 6 to Bohnice in Prague 8 due to concerns over its impact on the landscape, ecology, and cultural heritage. 

Harming 'ecological functions and cultural heritage'

The EIA said that the cable car would cause irreversible changes and reduce the value of the territory. While the EIA deemed the project acceptable regarding environmental protection and its impact on aspects such as carbon emissions, the location and track of the cable car were the main concerns due to ruining the region's appeal and look.

"The pylons, including the cableway with gondolas, represent technical elements that deviate from the harmonious scale and relationships in the landscape,” the EIA’s document states.

Residents and civic associations opposed the cable car in the past. Politicians also criticized it, with Prague councilor for finance Zdeněk Kovářík calling it "crap" and a waste of money. Its proponents emphasized that it could transport 2,300 people per hour, although the estimated cost of the cable car would have been around CZK 2 billion.

Late last year, Prague officials also criticized the idea for failing to include a designated parking spot at both ends of the cable car, which would likely lead to travel-related disruption.

A focus on the area's new tram line

The City of Prague has already planned a tram line project to connect Podbaba to Troja via a new bridge over the Vltava River, with trams then traveling through a tunnel to Bohnice. The project's estimated cost is CZK 6.5 billion, and construction is expected to begin in 2030 and last four years. The cable car was intended to provide a temporary direct connection between Prague 6 and 8 until the tram line’s completion.

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Chairman of the Prague 8 Transport Commission Martin Jedlička said on social media Tuesday that the city must now fully focus on, and speed up, the construction of the planned tram line, now that the cable car idea has crashed.

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