Compact archive November 26, 2007

Wenceslas Square in Prague shakes off Communist Reconstruction

wenceslas sqare project One of the most notorious reconstructions that took place in Prague was definitely taking the D1 expressway, and leading it between the statue of St. Wenceslas and the National Museum, and so cutting it from Wenceslas Square. It is the typical example, how does it ends, when a public commission is controlled by a political party.

Now it seems, Wenceslas square could come back to the pre-communist state of things. How was it before, and how it should look like again? An elegant city boulevard with wide pavements, alleys of trees, and tramways. The expressway, which is definitely a thorn in our side, will be moved away.

wenceslas sqare project Cigler&Marani Architects, who won the public competition of the future face of the square stated that return of tramways and reduction of car traffic should act out as a component which brings back life, but smooths it down at the same time. The expenses of the square reconstruction were estimated at 100 – 200 millions CZK (3,4 – 6,9 mil. €). The expenses of moving the expressway are reaching 450 millions CZK (15,5 mil. €).

foto: Cigler&Marani Architects


Be Ready to use a Ticket Machine in Czech Hospitals

If you get sick during your stay in Prague, it is good thing to know a new system of payments for health care is going to be established. The main change is patients have to take some cash with them, to pay for an investigation or for a visit of an emergency.

That is a first step to a large reform of Czech Health care, worked out by Tomas Julinek and Tomas Cikrt.

Part of hospitals plans that there will be machines placed on corridors, similar to those at car parks, bringing out tickets. How much do we pay precisely?

Charges for health care in the Czech Republic since January 2008:

A prescription – 20 CZK
A visit at a specialist – 50 CZK
A day at a hospital – 50 CZK
A visit at an emergency – 50 CZK
A visit at a general practitioner, some diagnosis – 50 CZK

Last USSR trains in Prague Metro soon replaced

made in the ussr “The last Metro trains from the former USSR are going to disappear in two years” said the councilman Radovan Steindrer. There are no USSR trains on the line C and A, there are still some on the line B, which are going to retire. The MHD (Prague Public Transport) heads consider moving the trains from the line C to B, and putting very new walk-through metro trains there.

As Staindler stated, “ Prague Metro is going to part with the last train of Russian fabrication and I thing the parting won’t be a very nostalgic one.” The new trains will be made by Siemens which automatically offered the city the walk-through version.

The trend of walk-through metro is usual in most of the first-world countries, more than a half of new trains in the world undergrounds are build in such a way. This version offers more space for travelers, but offers also more danger in the case of fire.

prague metro old prague metro - new Left: the old train from the USSR
Right: the new train made by the conglomerate CKD Praha, Adtranz and Siemens


New Giraffe Born in Zoo Prague

giraffes multiply in zoo prague

In the ‘African house’ a new baby giraffe was born, which makes the total number of giraffes born in Prague Zoo: sixty!. The youngster is a girl, was born on 17th November, is very active and can be seen since this weekend together with the rest of her pack.

Zoo celebrated the respectable number by a baptism ceremony of a giraffe boy Faust. The name was given by Milan Steindler, the dean of the 1st medical faculty of Tomas Zima. Faust truly is a hellish name, in spite of the blond baby giraffe doesn’t really show a link to hell.

There is no winter dormancy in Prague Zoo, giraffes are busy – they have increased their numbers of ten baby giraffes in the past two years! At the present moment, it is possible to see 17 Rothschild giraffes in two packs, both led by alpha males there.


Law Proposal Against Dishonest Taxi Drivers in Prague

taxi illustration photo Prague taxi drivers do not enjoy a good reputation. Their name is being spoiled by those who overcharge the fares.. There is usually no evidence and no claimant. What’s more, there is often no lever that would make them pay a fine, even when convicted.

The time for administrative procedure to be carried out is one year. According to the City Hall, it is not possible to render a decision in such a term; if somebody avoids notification deliverance and than appeals a lot, one year is not enough to solve the case.

As a result, Prague City hall wants to extend the time for execution of fines. Especially Prague taxi drivers, when the verdict announces them they are charged with fines, massively use the practice of appealing to the law for so long the charges expire.

Prices charged by some taxi drivers in Prague are notorious, Prague guides always give some advices, how to avoid being fooled.