Trams in Prague
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Trams in Prague

Prague tramway network
?koda 15T 9320 Loty?ská.jpg
Prague ?koda 15T tram in Dejvice
Jiráskovo nám?stí, Tatra T3R.P a Tan?ící d?m.jpg
Prague Tatra T3R.P tram in front of the Dancing House
Overview
LocalePrague, Czech Republic
Transit typeTramway
Number of lines34 (25 day routes, 9 night routes)[1](as of 25.3.2017)
Number of stations600
Annual ridership373.5 million (2018)[2]
WebsiteDopravní podnik hlavního m?sta Prahy
Operation
Began operation1875 (horse)[3]
1891 (electric)[3]
Operator(s)Dopravní podnik hlavního m?sta Prahy
(English: Prague Public Transit Company)
Technical
System length142.4 km (88.5 mi) - total route length[1]
518 km (322 mi) - track length[1]
Track gauge
Electrificationyes
Tram routes in Prague

Tram v Praze-10.2008.svg

The Prague tramway network is the largest such network in the Czech Republic, consisting of 142.4 km (88.5 mi) of track,[1][4] 931 trams,[1] and 25 daytime routes and 9 night routes[1] with a total route length of 518 km (322 mi).[1] It is operated by Dopravní podnik hlavního m?sta Prahy a.s., a company owned by the City of Prague. The Prague tram system (including the Pet?ín funicular) served 324.2 million passengers in 2012,[5] up from 312.9 million passengers in 2011.[6] Prague's first horsecar tram line was opened in 1875, and the first electric tram ran in 1891.[3]

As of 2019, the Prague tram network operates 882 tram vehicles,[7] one of the largest fleet in the world only behind Budapest. The system carried 373 434 000 passengers in 2018,[2] the highest tram patronage in the world after Budapest.

Prague trams today

As of 25 March 2017, the Prague tram network includes:

  • 25 day routes (numbered 1 to 26 [excluding 19]) - route 23 is operated as nostalgic by old unmodernised Tatra T3 trams,
  • 9 night routes (numbered 91 to 99, before 29 April 2017 numbered 51 to 59) and
  • 1 historical route, number 41 (in service between April and October, weekends only).

The day lines run from 4:30 AM until 1:00 AM the next day. Most of the lines run everyday from early morning to late night. Some lines also only run at selected times (usually workdays) and/or rush hours.

Tatra T3 on the night route 55

Night trams

Night trams operate between midnight and 5:00 or 6:00. Their routes are different from the daily ones, since in the night the trams have to substitute for the Metro. All lines converge at Lazarská in the city centre, although other interchanges exist. At Lazarská, passengers can change between all routes within 5 minutes, although individual services only run once every 30 minutes. Trams operating on the night lines start their shifts at about 8:00 PM on normal day lines, changing their routes at midnight and returning to their depots at the start of normal operations.

History

Horse tram

Horse trams in Prague in 1876

The horsecar trams started to operate on 23 September 1875 along the route Karlín - National Theater. The owner and the entrepreneur of this road was Eduard Otlet, from Belgium. This way lead to the theater, along the Národní T?ída street. Tracks went approximately in direction of today's Metro Line B. In 1876, the track was extended west of the National Theater, through the Újezd hub to the Smíchov Railway Station. In 1882 the network was extended to Vinohrady and ?i?kov. At that time, they were independent suburbs of Prague, but now they are incorporated into city. In 1883, the size of the entire network was 19.43 kilometers.

Electric trams

An 1890 drawing showing the design for Prague's first electric tram

In 1891 the first electric tram line was opened in Letná, a popular place of recreation in Prague. This line led from the upper terminal of the Pet?ín funicular to the pavilion of the Jubilee Exhibition through Ovenecká street. After two more years, this line was extended to the Governor's Villa, a further distance of 1.4 km. In 1896, on 19 March, Franti?ek K?i?ík opened a second, more important tram line, which lead from Florenc to Libe? and Vyso?any, joining the industrial suburbs of Prague with its residential area in the center.

In a continuation of the rapid growth of Prague's trams, another new lined was opened in 1897. This time it was a suburban route from Smíchov to Ko?í?e. It was named "Hlavá?kova electric railway". Later, a new passenger railroad in Královské Vinohrady was opened. The Prague to Vinohrady stretch spanned 5.8 kilometers, had 17 stations, and passed through Nové m?sto (New Town).

At another side of the city, thanks to above-listed railway between And?l and Smíchov, it allowed Prague tram to provide one-seat-ride between Ko?í?e and Vinohrady. Eventually, the municipal enterprise, Prague Transportation Company, was formed.

In 1898 the horse railway was bought by the company. Due to this, construction of new track started along with electrification of the existing tracks.

Early 20th century

Tram with trailer in Prague in the early twentieth century

In the early 20th century, a monopoly was formed to provide transportation in the city. It began to electrify the horse tram and soon the Otlet Prague trams came under the control of competitors of the electric enterprises. As the monopoly grew, it took over the tracks of the rest of its private competitors. The last private track, the work of Franti?ek K?i?ík, was transferred to the city by the year of 1907. In 1905, the electrification works were finished. Even the last horse tram route through the Charles Bridge was electrified (also a project of Franti?ek K?i?ík). The tram route through the Charles Bridge operated until 1908.

World War One

An open tram in the Old Town Square, 1913

The war added new strain to the tram network. A lack of sufficient horse-drawn transport meant that trams were used to carry war materials, fuel, raw materials, and food. Additionally, the need for ammunition led to trams being melted down for their metal and used to produce grenades and bombs, leading to further fall in capacities. This pressure came to an end when the newly formed First Czechoslovak Republic signed a peace treaty.

First republic

Again, the tram network underwent expansion, mainly to the newly built quarters of the expanded metropolitan Prague, such as Dejvice, Nusle and ?i?kov. In 1927 the length of the network exceeded 100 km. At that time the new unidirectional tram types were introduced and the dead-end terminals were rebuilt into loops.

Post-war era

Historical Tatra T1 at Prague Transport Museum

In 1951 began the replacement of two-axle tram railcars, by new modern series of ?KD production, at first by Tatra T1 and since 1962 by Tatra T3.

In the sixties, construction began on first underground sections of Prague's tram network. While the works were already underway, the project was changed to become a full metro system and the trams were expected to gradually phase-out similarly to most of the western cities. In this time, several important track sections were removed, including the line on Wenceslas Square.

However, in the eighties, the Communist government understood the advantages of a modern tram system and began ordering new tramcars, such as the Tatra KT8D5 as well as more Tatra T3, and started constructing new track sections, most of which were completed soon after the Velvet Revolution. There weren't many new tracks opened during the first twenty years after the revolution, since much more attention was paid to modernizations of existing tracks and vehicles, causing major service disruptions every summer. Among the new tracks that has been the constructed are extensions to Sídli?t? ?epy (1988), Ohrada-Palmovka (1990), to Mod?any (1995), Hlubo?epy-Sídli?t? Barrandov (2003) and Laurová-Radlická (2008).

Planned network development

Many track extensions are nowadays included in the development plans, three of them could begin its construction by 2020: Divoká ?árka-D?diná, Sídli?t? Barrandov-Holyn?-Slivenec and Mod?any-Libu?.[8]

Infrastructure

The network has seven active depots:[9]

Another depot, St?e?ovice tram depot, no longer runs an active service, but houses the Prague Public Transport Museum.

Rolling stock

The Prague public transport company has currently available for standard operations a sizable fleet of 968 trams of varying types, ranging from the classic Tatra T3 cars to the modern ?koda 15 T low-floor trams. These trams are distributed across seven depots across the city. Besides these, the company owns also a fleet of heritage streetcars kept within the transport museum and several trams especially equipped for use for driver training or snowplowing, bringing the total number of vehicles to over 1,000.

Tatra T3 and modifications

A modernized T3
A modernized T3
A low-floor T3
A low-floor T3

The various modifications of the Tatra T3 tram cars, which are common all over the former Eastern bloc, form the bulk of the fleet, since they were produced in Prague in large numbers for both domestic use and export. More than half of the classic streetcars have undergone modernization during the first ten years of the 21st century, which equipped them with new motors and electrical equipment, new audiovisual information system for the passengers and refurbished interiors. The renovated trams were named Tatra T3R.P, where R stands for Renovated and P for the used electrical equipment. Both the original design and the modernizations have proved so successful that the transport company has decided to produce newly built trams according to the original design, but with a low-floor section in the middle.

Newer trams

In the eighties, it was decided to produce a higher-capacity tram vehicle. The result was the Tatra KT8D5 articulated tramcar, of which 49 were delivered. All of these were modernized and equipped with a low-floor section. After the Velvet Revolution, the company decided not to continue with the deliveries and instead ordered delivery of 150 standard-length Tatra T6A5 cars. Shortly after these deliveries ended, the traditional producer of trams for Prague, ?KD Tatra, went bankrupt, stopping new tram deliveries for several years.

After strong demands both from the handicapped community and from the general public, the Prague transport company decided to order new low-floor trams from ?koda Transportation. 60 ?koda 14 T trams, designed by Porsche, were delivered between 2005 and 2009. They were followed by 250 of a more modern 100% low-floor ?koda 15 T since 2010.

Current rolling stock

Image Tram Car Type Modifications and subtypes Fleet numbers Depot Allocations In service[10]
TT Kotlá?ka - Sídli?t? ?epy, Krematorium Motol, Tatra T3R.PLF.jpg Tatra T3 Tatra T3M
Tatra T3SU
Tatra T3R.P
Tatra T3R.PV
Tatra T3R.PLF
T3 67xx-69xx (withdrawn)
T3SU 7001-7020
T3SUCS 7021-7292
T3M 8005-8106
T3RP 8211-8245, 8300-8554,
T3R.PV 8151-8181
T3R.PLF 8251-8258
Hloub?tín, Pankrác, Stra?nice, Kobylisy, Vokovice, ?i?kov 426
Výluka Zenklova, Vosmíkových, Tatra KT8D5R.N2P.jpg Tatra KT8D5 Tatra KT8D5
Tatra KT8D5R.N2P
9001-9048 non-modernized (without 9006 - damaged)
9051-9097 modernized. When a tram gets modernized 50 is added to its board number
Hloub?tín 55
Praha, Libe?, k?i?ovatka Sokolovská-Zenklova, Tatra T6A5 ?. 8652+?.jpg Tatra T6A5 Tatra T6A5 8600-8750 Motol, Stra?nice, ?i?kov 94
P?ístavi?t? - Dvorce, ?koda 14T.jpg ?koda 14 T ?koda 14 T 9111-9170 Motol 57
Prague 07-2016 tram at Andel img1.jpg ?koda 15 T ?koda 15 T
?koda 15 T4 (15T Alfa)
9201-9325
9326-9450
Pankrác, Vokovice, Motol, ?i?kov 250

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Company Profile - Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy". Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy. Retrieved 2013.
  2. ^ a b "Ro?enka dopravy Praha 2018" (PDF). tsk-praha.cz (in Czech). Technická správa komunikací hlavního m?sta Prahy a.s. p. 18.
  3. ^ a b c "History - Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy". Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy. Retrieved 2013.
  4. ^ "Annual Report 2011" (PDF). DPP.cz. Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy. p. 22. Retrieved 2013.
  5. ^ "Annual Report 2012" (PDF). DPP.cz. Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy. p. 20 & 66. Retrieved 2013.
  6. ^ "Annual Report 2011" (PDF). DPP.cz. Dopravní podnik hlavnívo m?sta Prahy. p. 75. Retrieved 2013.
  7. ^ Vehicle Statistics
  8. ^ "Tramvajové trat?". Strategickeprojekty.dpp.cz (in Czech). Retrieved 2018.
  9. ^ "Ka?dý den odtud vyjede 50 tramvají. Vozovna ?i?kov slou?í 100 let". idnes.cz (in Czech). 28 April 2012. Retrieved 2013.
  10. ^ Praha, Tramway

External links


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