Most back to normal after infrastructure modernisation
Posted on 15th May 2023 at 11:03
On 1 May the interurban tramway between the Czech industrial cities of Most and Litvínov re-opened after the 4 km long overland section between Záluží Chemopetrol and Litvínov nádraží was comprehensively rebuilt and modernised during a two-year engineering block.
Originally the re-launch was already supposed to take place in mid-February 2023, but during initial trials water damage to buried cables was discovered, which required rectification and triggered a nearly 3-month delay.
The infrastructure of the tramway, which opened in stages between 1957 and 1960 and is therefore the Czech Republic's newest light rail system, was last revamped in the 1980s. The now completed project turned out to be more extensive and more expensive than originally planned, because the poor condition of the tram bridges at Záluží Petrochemie required complete replacement rather than partial renovation. As a result, the budget framework increased from around EUR 27.8 million to about EUR 32.3 million and extended the project duration by one year.
The EU has contributed EUR 20.1 million to the project. During the 25-month reconstruction, all tram services between Záluží Chemopetrol and the northern terminus at Litvínov Citadella were suspended and replaced with buses.
With the current reopening of the northern section of the approximately 18.5 km long interurban network, only the first stage of the complete renewal of the overland route has been completed. The modernisation of the southern section between the Most Zimní stadion junction and Záluží Chemopetrol is still outstanding.
Vintage Tatra T3 313 (1987) runs through Záluží Petrochemie during a southbound trial run from Litvinov to Most on the interurban tramway, passing a newly-built bridge, with new tracks, ballast and overhead. (A. Thompson
The exact time frame and the budget for this next phase have not yet been determined a start date in late 2024 is being floated. Once shovels are in the ground again between Most and Chemopetrol, another complete engineering block will be required for an extended period of time.
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