City Hall approves trams on Wenceslas Square

Planning will start this year for new tracks going past the St Wenceslas Statue

City Hall has decided on where trams will go after they reach the National Museum. Tracks will be extended to reach the Můstek metro stop at Vodičkova and Jindřišská Streets, in the middle of the square.

The Prague Public Transit Company (DPP) this year will begin the planning process, and construction could begin in two years. The first trams could travel on the tracks in 2022.

The exact placement of the tracks and how they will connect with existing tracks will be determined by the study. In the past, tracks went on both sides of the St Wenceslas statue, but it is not clear if that will happen again.

Tracks extending from Vinohradská Street down past the museum were already counted on during the renovation of the museum, which reopened at the end of October 2018.

Some of the tracks are in place but now lead nowhere.

A new tram stop should be created in front of the museum.

The study should take into account the effect tram traffic will have on the Metro C station at Muzeum, which will be directly under the tracks.

“We have commissioned DPP to start designing a track study from the [National] Museum to Vodickova Street, according to the 2006 proposal,” Deputy Mayor Adam Scheinherr (Praha Sobě). Car traffic will not be affected this year.

When the plan was revived last year, Scheinherr said the tracks could be installed without ruining the look for the square. He said pillars for cables could be hidden among trees, for example.

DPP will work with Cigler Marani Architects (CMA), which has worked in the past on a plan to transform Wenceslas Square. The plan by Jakub Cigler’s firm to renovate the square dates back 2005, and the idea to alter the square dates to 1998.

Renovating the lower half of the square finally began last year, while the plan for the upper half, which is where the new tracks will be, remains stalled. The new tracks will be put in place before the lower half is renovated.

Another tram extension is possible from museum to the main train station, Praha hlavní nádraží. This currently requires a change to the zoning plan so tracks could cross Vrchlického sady. The City Council is still discussing this change.

Prague Integrated Transport (PID) in the past has been supportive of Scheinherr’s plan to take the route to Wenceslas Square.

“The new line on Wenceslas Square would strengthen the connection from Vinohrady to the center, ease traffic on Ječná Street and would be very welcome for planned and unplanned restrictions on tram traffic in the city center,” PID said over Twitter late last year.

Trams were last seen on Wenceslas Square in 1980.

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