Warsaw will not get Czech trams

Škoda Transportation, photo: archive of Czech Government

Poland’s capital, Warsaw, will not get Czech trams as once expected. Originally, Škoda Transportation won a lucrative tender worth more than 16 billion crowns for some 213 trams. But it was cancelled last year as the city did not have enough funds to cover the costs.

Škoda Transportation, photo: archive of Czech Government
The original deal exceeded Škoda Transportation’s entire revenues for 2016. Now, an arbitration court has ruled the tender will be held again, but without the Czech firm, news station TVN 24 reported. That means the city will again have to weigh offers by Hyundai and Pesa, the other two competitors. According to the arbiter, Škoda came up short in meeting a number of important requirements in the original tender.

Czech Radio cited the Polish website Transport Publiczny, however, as having pointed out that Pesa, which had been regarded as the favourite in the original tender, had had the same shortcomings in its original. In another article, the website noted that Škoda Transportation had planned its return to the Polish market with a big splash – while its tram offer was the most expensive, its offer of trains for the metro, for example, was the cheapest.

In the original tram tender, the firm was to have produced and delivered 123 low-floor trams by 2021. The city then would have had the option of whether to buy an additional 90 once it found the necessary funds.

The new trams needed in Warsaw are to run along newly-introduced lines on the outskirts of the city.