Modernization of a key section of the transit corridor between Prague and Plzen is complete
With the complete commissioning of the Ejpovice tunnel, the modernisation of the currently 14-kilometre long section of the transit railway line between the stations of Rokycany and Plzen has been completed. The concluding ceremony to opened the operation of the tunnel, which took place on 9 December 2018, was attended by Dan Tok, Minister of Transport of the Czech Republic, and Marc Lemaitre, Director-General, Directorate- General for Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission (REGIO).
The modernised section Rokycany - Plzen is part of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T) and lies on the western branch “4r” of OSJD Railway Transport Corridor No. 4, which corresponds to branch “IVa” of Pan-European corridor No. IV, connecting Prague - Plzen - Cheb - state border with Germany. The works on the project, the so called1st phase, was co-financed within the Operational Programme for Transport 2007-2013, its 2nd phase has been implemented within the current Operational Programme for Transport 2014-2020. The contractor for the works, called “The modernisation of the Rokycany - Plzen railway”, was a joint venture of the companies Metrostav and Subterra.
Thanks to the Rokycany - Plzen railway project, part of which is the newest longest tunnel in the Czech Republic, the journey by train from the centre of Prague to the centre of Plzen will be shortened to 1 hour and 14 minutes. The route passes through 2 new tunnel tubes of the Victoria tunnel passing under the hills of Homolka and Chlum. The length each of the two single-track tunnel tubes from the eastern to the western portal is almost 4150 m each thus shortening the overall length of the current section by about 6100 m (from 20 to 14 km) and decreasing the travel time for each train by 9 minutes or more.
The purpose of the project is primarily to achieve higher technical parameters for the railway lines within the corridor, including shorter travel time of trains and increased safety of railway operation. At the same time, the passenger comfort is supposed to increase.
The desired passage capability of the line will be achieved, ensuring the required throughput modernization of the existing security system and increasing the maximum line speeds of up to 160 km/h with further outlook to speeds of up to 200 km/h. The tunnel is considered to be the longest tunnel in the Czech Republic at present.
After operationalisation of the modernized Plzen railway junction the minimum mainline speed for the whole network of the Czech Railways will increase up to 80 km/h for the passenger service.
Modernization of Czech part of Corridor No. 4 enters new phase
In January 2019 the State Railway Infrastructure Administration (SZDC, manager of Czech railway infrastructure) officially started boring the Deborec tunnel, the shortest of the two tunnels of Sudomerice-Votice line on the Czech part of OSJD Railway Transport Corridor No. 4 (Pan-European Corridor No. IV). Boring started from the exit (Prague) portal and should be completed in July 2019, including the primal lining.
The Deborec tunnel is bored by a so-called New Austrian Boring Method which consists in mechanical breaking of rocks and their following lock-out by primal lining which activates the basic properties of the rock massif. When the tunnel is completely bored in summer 2020, secondary lining will be provided by formwork including bored parts of both tunnel portals. The tunnel’s bored part is 562 metres long.
The modernization of Sudomerice - Votice line is one of the final stages of the constructions on Corridor IV which connects Germany and Austria through Deem, Prague and Ceske Budejovice. A second track will be added to the current single-track line section, as well as two tunnels and a new railway station Cerveny Ujezd will be built. All construction works should be completed in January 2022.
The project’s objective is the construction of one more tunnel (Mezno tunnel) with a length of 840 metres. The Sudomerice - Votice line will be mostly relocated from its current path, which will shorten this route by 2 km. The current railway stations Strezimtf, Jesetice and Hermanicky will be replaced by a single station called Cerveny Ujezd and Mezno, Strezimtf, Cerveny Ujezd, Jesetice and Hermanicky become line’s new stops. Between Jesetice and Hermanicky stops, three long scaffold bridges are going to be constructed, the longest one being 244 metres in length.