Trains should go faster to Hradec Králové

New sections of track should allow for a much faster train trip

A project seeks to make it possible to get from Prague to Hradec Králové in less than an hour.

The Railway Infrastructure Administration (SŽDC) is planning to accelerate the line to reduce the travel time to 55 minutes from the Prague-Vysočany station and 62 minutes to Prague's main railway station, Hlavní nádraží. Now the trip takes 1 hour and 44 minutes.

This project is part of a list of 10 planned projects proposed by the SŽDC. The total estimated investment for all the projects is Kč 24.7 billion. Some are already in their starting phase.

The SŽDC hopes to put the inhabitants of Hradec Králové an equal footing with nearby Pardubice, which can be reached from Prague's Hlavní nádraží in about an hour due to a better rail corridor.

The SŽDC has already selected a supplier for optimizing the tracks between from Prague-Vysočany and the town of Mstětice in the Prague-East district, which should be also one of the most expensive sections. A stop is also planned near the Rajská zahrada metro station.

A section from Mstětice to Čelákovice is also planned and after that a section from Čelákovice to Lysá nad Labem and then to Nymburk, where the station should also be modernized.

The biggest changes will be for the track between Velký Osek and Hradec Králové. The double tracks between Chlumec nad Cidlinou and Hradec Králové are already being designed. The firm Sudop Praha won the contract for Kč 37 million. A tender is running for the design contract for another stretch at Kanín.

The track should support a train speed of 160 kilometers per hour for almost its full length. The shorter driving time is also due to the introduction of a new segment for express trains.

The stretch between Prague and Nymburk could start construction in 2019. Work on the Velký Osek section won't be until 2025–30.

The Czech Republic has some limited high-speed rail on the Pendolino lines from Františkovy Lázně to Plzeň to Prague to Ostrava and Olomouc, and also to Košice, Slovakia. Plans for more high-speed trains with international connections such as to Berlin have been proposed for the long term, but so far have not materialized.

Other options for fast intercity travel have been proposed such as a hyperloop from Brno to Prague and from Brno to Bratislava, Slovakia. This plan, proposed by Hyperloop Transportation Technologies in January 2017, remains at its earliest stages, Brno City Hall has shown interest, but progress remains to be made at the planned destinations.

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