One of the main priorities for Správa železniční dopravní cesty (SŽDC) in relation to railway infrastructure development is to ensure implementation of the governmental “Programme of Railway Rapid Service Development” in the Czech Republic. Successful preparation and implementation of the programme requires extensive cooperation between all areas of state administration, represented by the Ministry of Transport, SŽDC, and regional as well as local administration authorities. Thus, the Czech infrastructure manager has organised a series of meetings on the current status of HSL preparation in the Czech Republic. The most recent project meeting was recently held in Jihlava.
High-speed lines (HSL) are a key infrastructure component for the Czech Republic as it looks to the future. SŽDC has selected a number of “pilot sections” in order to accelerate the process of developing and building high-speed lines: Prague-Běchovice – Poříčany (Polabí HSL), Přerov – Ostrava (Moravská Brána – Moravian Gate HSL) and Brno – Vranovice (Jižní Moravia – South Moravia HSL). Additional sections of line have been added on the basis of cooperation between SŽDC and DB Netz AG for development of a new railway connection between Dresden and Prague: Praha-Vysočany – Lovosice/Litoměřice and Ústí nad Labem západ on the border between the Czech Republic and Germany. These sections of line are already making an important contribution to transport development by increasing railway capacity, and are improving transport reliability and enabling its further development.
Feasibility study and HSL route
The new Prague – Brno – Ostrava/Šakvice high-speed line is being examined in feasibility studies. These studies analyse several line path options and verify various parameters, such as appropriate maximum train speed. The feasibility studies will serve as a basis for future design works and are being developed for the Prague – Brno – Břeclav and Brno – Přerov – Ostrava sections of line.
HSL construction will result in considerable reduction of journey times, both on the new lines and beyond. The infrastructure currently being developed is part of the nationwide transport system.
New fast trains will run both on the new high-speed lines and on connecting, modernised conventional lines. Express trains will connect the main capital cities at high speed, with additional fast trains running from capital cities and large centres to the regions, ensuring a suitable regional service. Part of the overall available capacity will be reserved for fast regional trains in certain areas. Passengers will thus be able to use not only express trains for the Prague – Brno – Ostrava connection and beyond (Bratislava, Vienna, Berlin, Warsaw, etc.), but will also benefit from fast domestic trains for connections such as Prague – Zlín, Prague – Jihlava, etc.
Consideration is currently being given to the possibility of building terminals directly on main lines in order to service the regions. The terminals being considered include Praha-východ, Jihlava VRT, and Brno-Vídeňská Street.