Work on Prague's new Wenceslas Square tram line could begin in March

The long-anticipated connection from Vinohrady into the city center could soon be realized as the city evaluates offers for construction.

Expats.cz Staff

Written by Expats.cz Staff Published on 22.10.2023 11:18:00 (updated on 22.10.2023) Reading time: 2 minutes

The eagerly-anticipated tram line through Wenceslas Square in Prague is on the cusp of realization, reports travel journal Zdopravy.cz. A year after first announcing the project last September, Prague public transport authority DPP is set to choose an offer for construction by the end of the year.

The new tram line will provide a much-needed above-ground connection from Vinohrady to the city center and alleviate traffic congestion by connecting existing tram routes through Vinohradská to Jindřišská and Vodičkova streets. Construction work could commence as soon as March 2024.

"We are in the stage of evaluating the offers, if everything goes without complications, the contract will be signed by the end of the year," says DPP's Daniel Šabík, as reported by Zdopravy.cz. He adds that construction could begin by March as long as the final phase of the selection process flows smoothly.

The competition to secure a contract for the construction of the tram line was initially announced on September 12 of last year, and has been substantially delayed from the original schedule. The deadline for bid submissions was initially slated for October 24, 2022.

However, an influx of inquiries from potential applicants prompted DPP to extend the deadline a total of fifteen times. Ultimately, the deadline lapsed on July 11 of this year. This surge in interest from companies is indicative of the contract's substantial value, estimated at CZK 1.25 billion.

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The core objective of the project is to return trams to Wenceslas Square more than 40 years after they last rode down the central Prague locale. This encompasses the construction of the tram line itself, as well as the reconstruction of existing roadways and sidewalks.

The new line's construction is projected to last a maximum of 48 months, meaning that trams can be expected to return to Wenceslas Square by 2028.

The new tram connection from Vinohradská to Jindřišská and Vodičkova streets aims to relieve traffic congestion, as the current tram system in the city center is heavily reliant on the section between Lazarská and Jindřišská.

The tram tracks will border Wenceslas Square, while the central portion will transform into a pedestrian promenade. Like the recent revamp of the lower half of the square, enhancements include wider sidewalks, a new tree line, a dedicated cyclist lane, and a reduction in parking spaces.

The aspiration to reintroduce trams to Wenceslas Square originated years ago and materialized with the creation of a 70-meter-long track near the National Museum, which currently leads nowhere. With construction now on the horizon, the city anticipates a rejuvenated and more efficient tram network that will alleviate traffic bottlenecks in the city center.

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