The City of Katowice decided to extend the tramline infrastructure to southern districts. Marcin Krupa, the Katowice mayor, officially announced the decision on Monday. The project is called „Katowicki Szybki Tramwaj” (KST, Katowice Fast Tram).
The investment is planned to be delivered in 2018 or 2019 and will partially be financed from the European Union grants. The expected cost of the undertaking amounts to PLN 90 million. In case of failure to obtain the EU financing, the cost of the project will entirely be covered from internal funds, according to the mayor. „The investment process is being carried out by „Tramwaje Śląskie” (Silesia Trams*), however the company will be supported from the budget of the Katowice City” – said Marcin Krupa.
The new tramline would connect the existing tram terminus in the district of „Brynów” with the Kostuchna district. The last stop is planned to be situated in the area of the „Bażantowo” housing estate. A few options of routes were presented by the City Hall. The final one will be chosen after public consultations to be conducted with inhabitants of the area. The KST service would be approximately 5 kilometers long and the journey would last about 10 minutes. A speed of the tram will be up to 60 km/h. „If we want to build a fast tram, the will be no more than five stops. Car parks will be located close to each of the stops to encourage citizens to use the KST. We expect that about 5 thousand people will be taking the tram every hour” – the mayor explained.
Marcin Krupa has been considering to build a cableway on the same route, what he had promoted during his election campaign last year. Finally, the mayor decided to implement the traditional way of transport. As the reason he mentioned that the tram is much more accepted, comfortable and convenient for most of citizens. „A cableway would be an alternative mean of transport, while the tram is an undisputed solution if we want to impove the traffic of southern districts” – Marcin Krupa argued.
* „Tramwaje Śląskie” is a management body of the tram infrastructure in the Upper Silesian agglomeration, the company is controlled by the City of Katowice.