"Ukončete, prosím, výstup a nástup, dveře se zavírají." noteThe Czech capital of Prague has an extensive system of public transport. Besides busses, the world-renowned trams made by Tatra (or lately Škoda) and the relatively young commuter rail Esko, there's also the big ABC of public transport that forms its backbone, the Metro v Praze. According to The Other Wiki, the Prague Metro is the most-used subway worldwide on a per capita basis. Its service starts at 4:00 to 5:00 in the morning until 24:00 (Sunday to Thursday nights) or 1:00 (Friday and Saturday nights) and runs every 2-3 minutes at rush hour. Nightcrawlers will have to depend on special night-time tram lines numbered from 50 to 59, busses likewise go from 500 onwards.
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Plans for a subway date back to the turn of the century and especially inter-war Czechoslovakia, already featuring plans for a secant-system with three lines and three transfer stations between them that would later become typical for subway systems in the Communist East Block, the city layout just fit to it. Making it a completely underground system was a decision that was made very late, however. Before the war, it should be a combined elevated and underground system akin to Berlin or, how it was intended to become when construction started in 1966, a light rail system connected to overground tram lines in the city's outskirts. But in 1967, it was decided that the digging should result in a full-fledged underground system due to Soviet influence. The first stretch of line C from Sokolovska (today Florenc) to Kacerov was opened in 1974 and built not quite as deep as later lines with the cut-and-cover method as Prague yet had to make experiences in tunnel building. The lines A (opened 1978) and B (opened 1985) on the other hand were built with tunnel-boring machines, deep enough to have impressively long escalators and for their stations to serve a secondary role as nuclear fallout shelters in the case of World War III, just how it was supposed to be in the East Block. After Hole in Flag, several stations changed their names as the old ones reminded too much of Communism. And in 2002, the Metro was flooded in the centennial high waters that affected much of Central Europe.
Lines of Prague Metro
After the extension of line A to Motol, a new line D (blue) is supposed to be built from Pisnice via Pankrac to Namesti Miru, likely to Prague Central Station as well. It was initially conceived in Communist times as a mere bifurcation from line C to access housing projects in the straight south of Prague, but redesigned as an own line after it became obvious that line C wouldn't cope with the added traffic. Construction could be started in 2015 and the southern stub to Pankrac could already open before 2020, further construction to Namesti Miru could be completed by 2025. After that, extension to Central Station is very probable, but the further course is debatable and two options are actually plausible. The shorter and seemingly more elegant solution on the map would be an extension to Namesti Republiky, making line D cross with every other line and taking the triangle transfer design to the next level. The drawback is the lack of a sensible extension route due north. The alternative would be heading due east via Zizkov and Vysocany to Kbely in the northeast and is also written into land-use planning. Zizkov currently undergoes gentrification and rumours of line D not following said course are met with prophecies of doom. Vysocanska would provide transfer to line B and the suburban rail station Praha-Vysocany which is just as far away from the center as Pankrac, you'd rather transfer twice than riding half the down for no good. Construction of line D will be performed under a public-private partnership, i.e. private investors will dig the line on their own expense and will likewise run it for profit, albeit subsidized by the public to ensure unitary fares until the line will have become public property after some decades. It's the only way to make line D a reality without breaking public coffers. A line E (pink) has been conceived as a circle line, starting clockwise from Pankrac (C/D), the first stretch going cross-river to Smichov Station. Furthermore, two lines F (gray) and G (brown) are designated in the land-use plan of Prague with the prospect of being built until 2100. One could assume that a new metro line is supposed to be inaugurated every 25 years. Line F would primarily serve the left bank of the Vltava River in a strictly north-south fashion and the line G would cross Prague in an east-west manner.
Esko (commuter rail)
Just as Britain Is Only London, Prague and its central Bohemian hinterland make up the backbone of the Czech Republic, economically, culturally and anything else what makes a primate city. But only in 2007 did Prague with its environs get what other metropolitan areas in Europe take for granted, a system of commuter rail akin to the German S-Bahn or French RER systems. They labeled them Esko. note The Czechs indeed have to make up for lost time. Rail was a foreign body to the otherwise integrated public transport system and employed different fare systems, leading to redundant services along some rail lines. Fare integration happened in the 1990s, but the major boost only came with the 2002 flood when vital parts of the Metro were flooded note and people at one time depended on the classic, albeit unsexy railway. It's still a work in progress, many of the Esko lines are still regional trains that merely got relabeled while others meet the classical S-Bahn criteria (electrified, clock-face scheduling, max. 30 minute headway) and are preferably run with blue and red ČD Class 471 trains called "City Elefant". A very important pre-condition for the introduction of Esko services was the construction of the Nové spojení (New Connection) that greatly improved connections between Prague's northern railways and Prague Central Station. Besides Prague Central Station, Masaryk Terminal is an important end point for many northern lines, other lines may end in Smichov Station in the southwest and Vrsovice Station in the southeast. Holesovice Station is actually not important at all and only gets served by a tangential line. Many lines differentiate between S-trains and R-trains, with the S-trains stopping everywhere and the R-trains skipping several stops to only serve the most important stations on their way and therefore provide faster connections. Prague is suffering a severe investment bottleneck when it comes to railroads and many pressure groups (among them the "Center For Effective Transport") desire a so-called "New Connection II" which would only have been an underground railroad link between Smichov in the southwest and Karlin in the northeast in its simplest iteration (as envisioned by the Czech Railways), but has evolved to also include another link from (northwestern) Bubny and Holesovice via Negrelli Viaduct to (southeastern) Vrsovice. These two "crossrails" are supposed to run parallel between Florenc (near Masarykova, under- and overground flyover stations) and Wenceslas Square (connections to Central Station et al., four-track underground station).
Prague Metro sub-tropes