Prague needs to accommodate over 1.5 million residents

Photo: Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain

The city of Prague currently needs to provide flats for roughly 1.55 million residents, according to an analysis carried out by the company CE-Traffic. That is around 250,000 more than the population as estimated by the Czech Statistics Office.

Photo: Pixabay, CC0 Public Domain
According to the analysis, based on anonymous data provided by mobile operators, there are currently 1.55 million residents in Prague. Some 250,000 of these do not have a permanent residence in the Czech capital.

The survey also reveals that there are some 300,000 to 400,000 people commuting to the capital every workday, either to work or to school.

“Most predictions expected that Prague would have around 1.4 million residents by 2013, but that figure has already been exceeded by 150,000,” Ondřej Špaček of CE-Traffic told the Czech News Agency.

“When we add tourists, who are visiting the Czech capital, there are on average 1.75 million people in the streets of Prague on a regular work day,” he added.

“Current figures show that the demand for housing in Prague is higher than we expected, and we have to learn how to make better use of this data in the future,” Prague’s councillor for urban planning, Petr Hlaváček, told the Czech News Agency.

According to Mr. Hlaváček, the city has to focus mainly on developing its vast brownfields.

“It is obvious that the current situation, when housing has become inaccessible for so many Prague residents, is not sustainable any longer. But to fulfil the needs of our inhabitants, we cannot let the city spread beyond its borders but rather improve the quality of life within the city,” Mr. Hlaváček told the Czech News Agency.

Since 2015, prices of new flats in Prague have increased by around 90 percent. Consequently, a growing number of people prefer to commute to the city for work or studies, but live beyond its borders. That has led to increased building development in neighbouring areas.

As a result of development, prices of real estate in places directly adjoining the capital, such as Prague-East and Prague-West, have significantly increased. The average price of a family house went up by several million crowns over the past few years and rents have also gone up, especially in areas with good transport connection to the capital.

“Slow building development in Prague is being supplemented by growing regional markets. However, that brings around all sorts of negative effects, such as increase of non-environmental means of traffic,” architect Lukáš Kohl told the Czech News Agency.