competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague’s funicular

participants worldwide can enter the competition to re-invent prague’s landmark   visited by more than

participants worldwide can enter the competition to re-invent prague’s landmark

 

visited by more than 55 million people since 1985, taking 2 million passengers in a year and around  290 in a day, czech republic‘s most visited attraction needs a revamp for the modern day. the country’s largest public transport operator, prague public transit co., inc. (DPP), launches an international competition to elevate the design of the city’s funicular to petrin hill, marking a huge step in modernizing the country’s history. designers from all over the world are asked to alternate the landmark in a timeless, innovative and contemporary project, while respecting the 21st-century public transportation trends and the local genius loci. 

 

 

get those wheels turning and submit your application for the funicular competition by november 1st, here!

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague's funicular
two cars passing by on a single-rail track with an abt switch

all images courtesy of prague public transit co., inc (DPP) archive unless stated otherwise

 

 

the inseparable part of prague public transit co., inc has been welcoming tourists, residents, students, skiers and cyclists since its opening to the public in 1891. in these years, the funicular has gone through various changes technologically, from the water counterbalance system to the more advanced driving gear and electromotor. following damages and many repair costs, in 1985 new cars were constructed with modified facilities along with structurally strengthened track and rails.

 

 

35 years later and with the need to modernize the existing mechanism, the transportation company approves and announces a competition. along with the visual, technical and practical qualities, the 4-minute shuttle-operation railway also provides the means to enjoy the city’s distinctive topography. at 237m above sea level, the project in the UNESCO protected area is ready for a generational renovation. 

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague's funicular
modern cars from 1932 were electrified and used until 1965. the design of their front mask was similar to those used on prague trams

source: DPP archive

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague's funicular
on february 8, 1985 the current cars were re-railed. old chassis from previous models were reused due to their perfect technical condition

source: DPP archive

 

the generational alteration of prague’s funicular marks a modernizing step in czech republic

 

including a portfolio with previous works, the participants are asked to submit ideas of two similar funicular cars with a capacity of up to 120 passengers each, both body and interior. in more progressive lines, the brief does not ask for a completely different prototype, but rather a proposal based on the technology of the manufacturers on the market. to ensure a holistic review of each entry, a five-member jury gets to decide the winner and runner-up. along with leading personalities of the design scene, vehicle and industrial designer gerhard nüssler, also a member of the board of the international design center in berlin, is part of the jury. public life and transport experts, renowned manufacturers get to consult and review as well. names such as anna švarc, prague’s metro architect, and škoda auto’s interior designer jan dědek are some of the members. the participants receive CZK 1.5 million (approx. 59,100 euros) for prizes and reimbursement of participants’ expenses, in agreement with the city. 

 

 

to learn more on the competition visit the link here: https://www.dpp.cz/designcompetition

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague's funicular
a direct view of the panorama of the old town, the river vltava, and the charles bridge from the bridge at the nebozízek inter-station

source: DPP archive

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague's funicular
jan sramek’s illustration of the funicular from 1985

source: DPP archive

competition calls designers everywhere to reimagine prague’s funicular