It has almost been a year since we reported on five double-deck, push-pull trainsets being ordered by České dráhy (ČD) for the Moravian-Silesian Region of the Czech Republic. It’s time we update you on the progress of this order.
The construction of the new passenger cars is well underway. ČD posted an update showing the bodywork of the new commuter trains:
Ostrava ➡ Frýdek-Místek ➡ Frenštát pod Radhoštěm ?
Od jara 2021 do Beskyd dvoupatrovým vlakem.
Bezbariérový nástup, klimatizované vozy, #WIFI připojení a nabíjecí stanice pro vaše zařízení ?.
— České dráhy, a.s. (@ceskedrahy_) February 27, 2020
These 3-car sets will be operated on the busiest non-electrified passenger route in the north-east corner of the country, between towns of Ostrava, Frýdek-Místek and Frenštát pod Radhoštěm. For now, they will be pushed and pulled by existing locomotives used on this route – class 750.7, diesel locomotives modernized by CZ Loko. Yet, with electrification plans on this route, a change of traction is expected in the years to come, which is why locomotive-hauled trains were the preferred option.
New low-floor, airconditioned trainsets are expected to be put into operation in spring 2021.
The producer of these railcars, Škoda Transportation, has also recently announced a major investment into its production facility in Ostrava (Škoda Vagonka), worth almost 40 million EUR. Within the next two years, the number of employees should double here (reaching 900 people), along with investment into a new production line, a paint shop, a machining center, and further machines and equipment modernization.