Last year, Prague’s Ministry of Transport announced plans for a railway extension that would lead from Prague 6 to Václav Havel Airport, and further lines continuing to Kladno.
The railway in Prague would directly connect the airport with the center of the city at Prague’s Masarykovo nádraží station. At peak times, six trains per hour could make a 27-minute journey.
Prague has long lacked an efficient public transport solution from its main airport. The railway would be a significant improvement over current options, which involve lengthy travel by bus and then metro for the same journey.
But while plans for the new railway were agreed nearly a year ago, no word on its progress had since been made.
Yesterday, however, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka made it clear that the line was a priority after meeting with the Railway Infrastructure Administration (SŽDC), Transport Minister Dan Ťok, and Prague Mayor Adriana Krnáčová.
“The twin-track electrified railway line from Prague to the Václav Havel Airport is the government’s priority,” Sobotka wrote on Twitter.
“The first sections can start being built on in 2019 with the entire project completed between 2023-24.”
The price tag for the airport rail extension? Roughly 20 billion CZK, according to iDnes.cz.
While the city is hopeful that EU funding will cover a large portion of that, a potential holdup is the underground tunnel leading through most of Prague 6.
Building an above-ground line would be considerably cheaper, but has been met with resistance from local residents.
At a press conference after the meeting, Sobotka also discussed plans for a high-speed (300+ kilometer per hour) railway between Prague and Brno and from Prague to Dresden and Berlin.
Those connections could be viable in the 2030s.