Prague is preparing to build nearly a kilometer-long trolleybus track leading to Prosek. The project is planned to begin this September. Electric buses would start driving through the route this Autumn. The buses will not be a reminder of public transportation in the 70s, but they will be operating on a similar principle. The overhead wires will be charging energy to the engine.
The re-introduction of trolleybuses as a part of the public transportation system is a key step in fulfilling the long-term emission reducing strategy in the city. The plan was developed after the Paris Agreement on climate change, under which around two hundred countries in the world agreed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. “In our case, it means that we will only be using electric modes of public transportation,” says Jan Šurovský, technical director of DPP.
The batteries of electric buses can only last a limited amount of time and drive uphill consumes a relatively high amount of energy. The problem can be solved by charging the buses during the drive. The trolleybus wires will serve the purpose. The experimental track in Prosek between Kundratka and Kelerka stops will show how effective this solution will be and whether trolleybuses could be installed in other parts of Prague as well.
The two-month long construction of the track will cost around five million CZK. The first trolleybus can hopefully be spotted in November. “We will obtain enough data to come to a conclusion by the end of Winter. In Spring, we will know whether trolleybuses will be the way into the future,” notes Šurovský.
The director did not disclose which other parts of the city are being considered for the project. Trolleybuses would be the most effective in parts with high incline terrains and a high number of passengers.
Trolleybuses were a part of Prague’s public transport system until 1972 when they were replaced by trams. DPP is not planning a full return of trolleybuses, as building an entire network would be very costly.