Prague to remove over a hundred advertising stands from the city center

Dozens of free-standing advertising stands in the city center currently feature an urban camouflage motif, and will be removed in the coming months.

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky Published on 05.08.2023 15:59:00 (updated on 06.08.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

In an effort to combat visual smog and create a more pedestrian-friendly cityscape, Prague is set to remove 119 advertising stands from its streets. The move aims to enhance the aesthetics of the city and eliminate obstacles for pedestrians and cyclists, according to Adam Zábranský, a city councilor from the Pirate Party.

These advertising stands currently feature a black, gray, and white urban camouflage motif instead of promotional campaigns. They will begin to completely disappear from the city's landscape starting at the end of August.

Zábranský revealed a full list of locations where the advertising stands will be removed on his Facebook page. The campaign is part of the city's larger strategy to fight visual smog and create a more harmonious urban environment.

The transition is linked to the gradual end of cooperation between Prague and media company JCDecaux, which owned and managed many of the advertising stands through a contract that expired in 2021. The city will also purchase some of the advertising stands from the company in order to facilitate their removal

Prague is also replacing bus and tram shelters across the city owned by JCDecaux with their own structures. Technology of the City of Prague (THMP), a city-owned company, is overseeing the process of introducing new furniture and shelters.

Zábranský emphasized that the city does not plan to reintroduce similar advertising stands in the future. He stressed that these structures often create unnecessary hindrances for pedestrians, cyclists, and contribute to visual smog, which negatively impacts the urban aesthetic.

Prague street advertising with urban camouflage motif. Photo: Jason Pirodsky
Prague street advertising with urban camouflage motif. Photo: Jason Pirodsky

"I firmly believe that advertising spaces in the wider center will soon begin to disappear as well, where, in my opinion, they do not belong," notes Zábranský. "However, I can imagine that we will preserve a few locations for city communication in the event that they do not create unnecessary visual or physical barriers."

Prague's efforts to eliminate visual clutter and improve the urban environment align with its broader strategy of enhancing the quality of public spaces. As the city progressively replaces the JCDecaux-owned infrastructure with its own, the focus remains on making Prague more pedestrian-friendly and visually appealing.

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