At the beginning of next year, the results of the feasibility study for the new route from Prague-Beroun ordered by Správa železniční dopravní cesty (SŽDC) will be available. The document assesses individual alternatives for the new line between these two cities, especially from the point of view of economic effectiveness. There are three alternatives altogether: alternative C with a long tunnel between the Prague areas of Smíchov and Beroun, alternative B with a shorter tunnel on the Praha-Radotín-Beroun line section and alternative F with tunnels up to five kilometres long on the Praha-Radotín-Řevnice line section. The new line is designed for mixed transport with a maximum speed of up to 200 kph.
The optimisation of the current line along the Berounka River which will be launched next year and take several more years cannot meet sufficient transport capacity that would satisfy all requirements of entities ordering passenger transport as well as freight transport carriers in the long term. The extent of transport will be restricted considerably especially due to the noise burden; moreover, standard trainsets will not be able to meet the required journey times of 60 minutes between Prague and Plzeň. The situation is even more complicated by the attitude of cities situated between Beroun and Hořovice where the public does not agree with the high-speed corridor currently in place.
”The new line will reduce journey times between Prague and Plzeň considerably; current capacity will be freed for increasing regional transport, the noise burden in the most densely populated areas will decrease and a possible implementation of the F alternative will considerably reduce journey times for the Prague-Příbram route as well“, said Mr Radek Čech, Director of the SŽDC Strategy Section. However, the project also has its disadvantages such as considerable investment costs, especially in the case of alternatives B and C where only the tunnel between Prague and Beroun for alternative C would represent a financial sum exceeding CZK 50 billion. For alternatives B and F, all trains would remain on part of the current line which would mean more noise.
“The technical and transport solution is mostly finished; now we are preparing part of the transport prognosis and economic assessment. We assume that the study should be completed next January, the first economical assessment results of all alternatives should be available this October”, added Mr Čech.