Správa železnic Concludes Contract with SNCF for Lease of TGV Presentation Unit

French high-speed train will be presented to the public for the first time on 6 June at Prague Main Station. In the following days, it will be on display in Brno, Jihlava and Ústí nad Labem. The arrival of the TGV is part of the existing cooperation between Správa železnic and the SNCF Group on the project of high-speed lines (HSL) preparation in the Czech Republic.

The stay of the TGV unit in the Czech Republic will be associated with a series of promotional events prepared by Správa železnic and SNCF for public and local governments. The activities concern in particular the domestic HSL preparation, which has already entered the design phase. As the Director General of Správa železnic Jiří Svoboda states, this exceptional project deserves to be popularised: “It is the largest infrastructure project in the history of the independent Czech Republic, with an estimated cost of approximately CZK 700 billion. The arrival of the TGV train is a symbol and a way of taking the process of preparation of new lines closer to the public and communicating details that people expect from us.” Experts from the HSL preparation team will be available to interested persons at every stop of the high-speed train.

The contract covers the cost of the lease of the train set, staff salaries and SNCF compensation costs. Its value is EUR 379 thousand. The provision of the train unit is entirely without profit. Director General Jiří Svoboda also notes that many companies have declared their financial support for the event: “We very much appreciate the cooperation with our partners, which include major technology, design and construction companies from the railway sector. Thanks to their support, we will cover a significant part of the costs of organising the event.”

The transport of the unit in Germany and the Czech Republic will be provided by the company ČD Cargo. Tomáš Tóth, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the carrier, says that the company is ready for this special consignment. “We are guided by the slogan ‘anything – anywhere’, therefore it is no problem for us to arrange even the transport of a TGV unit. However, this legendary train unit is not our typical cargo, so we are pleased to be able to participate in this event as the official carrier of the train itself.”

Beyond the scope of the contract, the French partner has arranged the presence of several prominent personalities who will attend the accompanying events of Správa železnic and SNCF at the Brno Exhibition Centre. One of them is François Sauvadet, President of the Assembly of French Departments (ADF). The Ambassador of the French Republic to the Czech Republic, Alexis Dutertre, has also promised to attend the TGV presentation.

The Czech HSL have been given European priority thanks to the inclusion of their main corridors in the trans-European TEN-T Core network. The step of the European Commission may facilitate the drawdown of the CEF 2 (Connecting Europe Facility) programme. Michal Štefl, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce of the Czech Republic, points out that the implementation of the HSL will have a positive impact throughout the society: “It is already clear that the new lines will change the demography of our country, as the mobility of the population will increase significantly. Companies and employees will have completely different opportunities. Improving our infrastructure will also attract new investors.” Jiří Nouza, President of the Association of Construction Entrepreneurs, adds that the expansion of high-speed networks is a major opportunity: “We will significantly shorten distances between regions, which will have a positive effect on the whole economy. This is also a challenge for the construction sector, which is intensively monitoring and supporting the HSL preparation.”

More detailed schedule of the TGV tour in the Czech Republic will be published in the upcoming days. For more information follow the social media of Správa železnic under: #TGVCESKO. The current status of HSL preparations can be found at www.spravazeleznic.cz/vrt.

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