The Škoda–Solaris 24m will be the longest trolleybus used in public transport in the Czech Republic. Credit: Petr Hejna, DPP.

Škoda’s New 24-Metre Trolleybus To Prague Airport To Be The Longest In The Czech Republic

Passengers using public transport to and from Prague’s Václav Havel Airport will soon see big changes. This week, the Prague Transport Company (DPP) and the Škoda Group, in a consortium with the Polish manufacturer Solaris Bus & Coach, presented their new 24-metre Škoda–Solaris trolleybus at the Czechbus 2023 fair in Prague’s Letňany. DPP has ordered 20 of these vehicles for the section Nádraží Veleslavín – Prague Airport, which will change from bus line 119 to trolleybus line 59 after electrification has been completed. 

The Škoda–Solaris 24m will be the longest trolleybus used in public transport in the Czech Republic. DPP will become their first Czech operator, and Prague will be the first city in the Czech Republic where they will run. Their deployment will significantly increase capacity on the line between Veleslavín Railway Station and Prague Airport, as well as being more comfortable for passengers and reducing greenhouse gas emissions and noise levels.

“Despite its length, the three-link trolleybus is very well controlled, its steering and manoeuvring are comparable to ordinary articulated trolleybuses,” said Radek Svoboda, Managing Director of Components & Bus Mobility at Škoda Group. “We are happy to have the opportunity to participate in the reintroduction of trolleybus traffic to the streets of Prague. Škoda has been part of many historical moments and we appreciate the fact that we can once again stand by something so important.” 

Credit: Petr Hejna, DPP.

According to Petr Witowski, Chairman of the Board and CEO of DPP, the electrification of the route is progressing according to schedule, and the construction of the infrastructure in the Řepy garage and the trolleybus line at Václav Havel Airport Prague are entering their final phase, with planned completion at the end of February next year.

DPP hopes to deploy the first tram at the turn of November and December, on the already completed trolleybus line from Palmovka to Čakovice and Miškovice. The first one must initially run without passengers for 5,000 kilometres, in the first phase of the so-called “vehicle homologation” process. After this, the first passengers will be able to ride the vehicle. In the second stage of homologation, the vehicle must run for 15,000 kilometres, with a second vehicle deployed in January to assist. If there are no issues, DPP will take over all 20 trolleybuses in mid-February, and they will come into operation on line 59 to the airport in March 2024.

Credit: Petr Hejna, DPP.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of Prague Airport, Jiří Pos, welcomed the trolleybus connection from the airport to the centre: “It will increase comfort for passengers and all employees,” he said. “At the same time, the concept fits into our ESG strategy. Reducing emissions and noise at the airport and its surroundings is our long-term goal, and we try to involve our partners in this, including DPP without a doubt. The ideal transport connection from the airport to the centre and back will then be a rail connection.”

DPP ordered a total of 20 Škoda–Solaris 24m three-cell battery trolleybuses from the Škoda Group and Solaris Bus & Coach consortium, worth a total of CZK 620 million. At a length of 24.7 metres, they will become the longest trolleybuses ever operated in the Czech Republic. The vehicle can accommodate up to 179 passengers, 54 of which are seated. The five-door design will enable faster exchange of passengers and more space for passengers with luggage. There will also be a check-in and information system with cashless ticket sales and automatic passenger counting, air conditioning, and an interior and exterior camera monitoring system.

Škoda’s New 24-Metre Trolleybus To Prague Airport To Be The Longest In The Czech Republic
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