They were part of a fleet of 250 new 15T trams rolled out in Prague over the course of a number of years, but only half of the fleet was built with air conditioning: earlier models came without before the city re-negotiated a deal with Škoda to provide the new trams with both air conditioning and WiFi capabilities.
Now, however, Prague’s public transportation authority DPP has reached an agreement to retro-fit the rest of the fleet – 124 additional vehicles – with air conditioning units by the end of next year.
Škoda has quoted DPP a price of 396 million crowns – discounted from an earlier quote of 434 million – to retro-fit the air conditioning, though DPP may still seek other alternatives.
Because of the time it takes to install the air conditioning, and the need to keep most of most of the vehicles in operation on Prague’s streets, two trams per week will be undergo the procedure resulting in a total time of more than a year to complete the project.
In Prague, only the tram driver can control the temperature in the passenger cabins; if it’s too hot, you can try to kindly ask for the temperature to be lowered.
Passengers, however, will still be able to open windows, which may defeat the purpose of the air conditioning if in use.
While the Škoda ForCity 15T represent the bulk of the trams that service Prague’s streets, they aren’t the only models. Some older trams will continue to ride in Prague without air conditioning, though DPP has stated that they plan to install air conditioning in older models in the driver’s cabin.