Compact archive December 29, 2006

New Year´s Eve at the Old Town Square

The Old Town Square in the center of Prague offers a program for both adults and children on New Year´s Eve. The program for children starts at 5 pm, then the celebration for adults will follow at 7 pm.

Children can see a magician´s performance there and learn how to conjure. Also a fakir will perform there and children can compete in singing.

The program for children will be replaced by a concert of various Czech bands in the evening. Humorous performances will be part of the show. Visitors can buy mull, punch or traditional champagne to drink while listening to the music.

Entry is free. Visitors are asked not to bring any pyrotechnics or drinks in glass to the square.

Dramatic incident on Prague airport

Czech police was afraid, that it could be a terrorist attack: a Russian airplane had to make a forced landing on Prague airport Ruzyne because of a man, who threatened with hijacking the plane.

The incident happened yesterday around quarter past 10 am. A passenger of a plane flying from Moscow to Geneva came to the pilot´s cockpit and threatened, that he will blast a bomb. He seemed to be drunk. He demanded that the plane has to fly to Egypt.

The pilot with a help from other passengers managed to pacify and bind the man. The plane landed immediately on the nearest airport, which was Prague Ruzyne. A counter-terrorism commando and two fighter planes arrived quickly at the airport to check the situation. It was found out, that it was really “just” a drunken passenger and not a serious attempt to hijack a plane.

It is not clear, if the man will be committed to Czech or Russian authorities. He was accused of threatening safety of a plane and he may be imprisoned for 15 years.

A new shopping centre in Prague-Vysocany

Prague quarter Vysocany is not a very nice place for living at the present time. All that people see from their windows is a huge sports arena Sazka, a parking lot and desolate surroundings. All this should change in coming years. New commercial and administrative buildings, entertaining centre and a park will be built there. The whole area will be called the “Green Island”.

The first building, a parking house, will be built in 2007. The existing parking lot will be then overbuilt by the shopping and entertaining centre. Also a hotel and a sport centre are planned there. There could be possibly an ice rink or a venue for cultural events.

At the present time, the inhabitants of the area have no proper place to go shopping, they have to go to the far centre in Cerny Most. A park should be built around the new houses, so the name Green Island will hopefully be fitting.


Better tram service in Prague in 2007

The public transport by trams in Prague will be improved in the coming year. New trams will be bought, some more will be modernized. A new tram line, leading to undergroung station Radlicka, will be built.

There are already 10 low-floor trams in service in Prague. At least 20 new low-floor trams Skoda, designed by Porsche, will be bought and 6 trams will be modernized. These changes will cost 1.27 billion CZK. Also underground trains, going on the B line, will be modernized.

The trams in Radlice, which terminate in the Laurova stop at the present time, will be extended to the underground station Radlicka.

Another pleasant change is that there will be conductors in some night trams since the second half of January. They are supposed to ensure the safety of passengers.

The Stefanikuv most (bridge) in the center of Prague will be repaired and therefore it will be closed for eight months. It will affect the transport in the area – trams will not be in service there at the time.


Charles Bridge will be restored at last

The restoration of Charles Bridge, one of the most important historical monuments in Prague, will start in spring 2007. The bridge needs a repair for forty years already and it has been planned for a long time.

The restoration will have two phases: the stone parapet will be reinforced, the bridge will get a new paving and the isolation of the whole bridge will be improved in the first phase. It should take about a year. The second phase, renewal of the whole Charles Bridge, will follow and it will last for about 10 years.

Visitors of this historical monument needn´t be afraid: the bridge will stay open to public and only one tenth of it will be repaired at the same time.

Gas lamps will be given back to the Charles Bridge and most importantly, the bridge will be saved from the water, which runs inside because of bad isolation.