We are opening three new metro stations, just as we promised in our programme statement. The opening is two months ahead of the plan. Prague’s underground thus covers 59 km and we are opening its 55th, 56th and 57th stations, said the mayor of Prague, Pavel Bém, at the opening ceremony. Public transportation in the city is our priority over private transportation. Out of the total transportation in Prague, 57% go to public transportation which is a unique phenomenon in Europe. Within public transportation we give preference to rail transportation. This does not only include the Metro but also tram lines and commuter trains from the Central Bohemian Region.

The mayor also mentioned further development of Prague’s underground. We are preparing a further nine stations on line A in the direction of the airport and further ten stations on line D. We also plan to extend tram lines. What is important, is that yesterday, the Czech TV broadcast that metro IVC 2 will serve moles and sousliks and I want to thank them because if we look at this part of the city, it has some 80 thousand inhabitants and if we look at the number of commuters from Central Bohemia, it might reach at least 50 thousand people every day. So if the people in the Czech TV see these people as sousliks and moles, we, Prague councillors do not see them as such, Said Pavel Bém.

Radovan Steiner, the councillor for the traffic, mentioned, that although line C with its 22 km is not the longest underground line in Prague, on the European scale, its length is not insignificant. Intervals on line C will now reach 115 seconds, which is really the top in the world and it is in fact a technological minimum which can be reached. A faster operation, from the point of view of passenger transport, is not possible, said R. Steiner. At the end of his speech he expressed the hope, that in four-years time, they will all meet again for the opening of line A extension and also the first stations of the new line D.

The managing director of Prague Public Transit Company, Martin Dvorak, thanked the city representatives for investing 14 milliard CZK out of the total sum of 15.5 milliard CZK. The rest was obtained from the Czech State. Such proportion of investments is unique throughout the world and there is no other city in the world that would invest as much money into public transport as Prague did. However, I strongly believe, that we will manage to persuade the Czech State, i.e. the Ministry of Transportation and the Ministry of Finances, to change their attitude and that we will make them understand that the Metro does not only serve Praguers but also all the tourists and visitors to Prague.

Oskar Exner