Articles

Prague subway turnstiles: neverending story

In Economy, Prague, Technology, Travel on May 20, 2010 by Petr Bokuvka Tagged: , , , , ,

DP Praha, the City of Prague’s public transportation authority, wants to reinstall turnstiles at subway stations. The most recent discussions have been going on for two years with no real results…

The project is feasible. One of the benefits would be the improvement in terms of fare collection. However, some issues have to be resolved, such as the payment of one-ride fares via SMS cell phone messages, etc.
MF Dnes daily, March 14, 2008

Public transportation enthusiasts reacted almost immediately. They argue that the crowds of people at major transfer points who transfer between buses/trams and the subway will slow down and that people who have pre-paid cards (in which case bar codes or magnetic stripes will have to be scanned) will cause the system to crash.

However DP Praha argued that these issues will be resolved and ticket inspectors will practically disappear from subway stations. They’ve probably never heard of people in the U.S. who like to jump waist-high turnstiles.

One year later, on March 13, 2009, Czech Television reported that the project should cost CZK 2.2 bln and the estimated ROI is five years… According to the report, the turnstiles should be almost full-height types (1.7 m) and that the design should be sufficient to withstand large crowds at major transfer points (40 to 60 people per minute)…

And once again, one year later, the Green Party says that DP Praha should give up the project because the ROI calculations are unrealistic, DP Praha would have to apply for a loan and that the new technology is not friendly to wheelchair-bound citizens and mothers…

Some citizens’ organisations also claim that the system that is planned for subway will not be compatible with ticket markers on buses trams and trains…

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