KOUTY NAD DESNOU BRANCH
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SUMPERK TO KOUTY NAD DESNOU
Ceske Drahy

AUSTRALIA RAILWAYS: CAIRNS KURANDA SCENIC RAILWAY - COUNTRY LINK CANBERRA HERITAGE RAILWAY - NORTH WILLIAMSTOWN RAILWAY MUSEUM PUFFING BILLY - QUEENSLAND RAILWAYS - SEYMOUR TO BENALLA RAILWAY SKYRAIL - VICTORIAN GOLDFIELDS RAILWAY - ZIG ZAG RAILWAY - 707 GROUP - 3801
TRAVEL ARTICLES : BRISBANE - SYDNEY - MELBOURNE - WHITSUNDAY ISLANDS

TASMANIA RAILWAYS: DON RIVER RAILWAY - DERWENT VALLEY RAILWAY - HOBART TRANSPORT MUSEUM - SHEFFIELD RAILWAY - WEST COAST WILDERNESS RAILWAY TASMANIA TRAVEL ARTICLES

NEW ZEALAND RAILWAYS: ARTHURS PASS - AUCKLAND MUSEUM OF TRANSPORT (MOTAT) FERRYMEAD MUSEUM OF TRANSPORT - GLENBROOK RAILWAY - KINGSTON FLYER
MAINLINE STEAM AUCKLAND TO WELLINGTON AND PICTON TO INVERCARGILL - PLAINS RAILWAY PLEASANT POINT RAILWAY - TAIERI GORGE RAILWAY - WEKA PASS RAILWAY
NEW ZEALAND TRAVEL ARTICLES - MILFORD SOUND - T.S.S. EARNSLAW - ROTORUA

PERU RAILWAYS - PERURAIL - F.C.C.A. - CENTRAL RAILWAY - SOUTHERN RAILWAY
CUSCO AND SANTA ANA RAILWAY - HUANCAYO AND HUANCAVELICA RAILWAY YAURICOCHA RAILWAY - CERRO DE PASCO - ENAFER

ECUADOR RAILWAYS - FERROCARRILL ECUATORIANA
E.F.E. - E.N.F.E. - GUAYAQUIL & QUITO - QUITO & SAN LORENZO
DURAN - YAGUACHI - BUCAY - HUIGRA - SIBAMBE - ALAUSI - RIOBAMBA - URBINA - EL BOLICHE - TAMBILLO - QUITO
IBARRA - PRIMER PASO - LITA - EL PROGRESO - SAN LORENZO

IRISH RAIL - NORTHERN IRELAND RAILWAYS - TRALEE AND BLENNERVILLE STEAM RAILWAY
ENGLAND - FFESTINIOG RAILWAY - GREAT ORME TRAMWAY - SCOTLAND

EUROPEAN RAILWAYS : HARZER-SCHMALSPUR-BAHNEN-RASENDER ROLAND - MOLLI GERMAN STEAM RAILWAYS - CZECH RAILWAYS - MAJORCAN RAILWAYS
MOROCCO RAILWAYS - NORWAY RAILWAYS - POLISH RAILWAYS
ROMANIAN RAILWAYS - SPANISH RAILWAYS - SLOVAK RAILWAYS

THE SUMPERK TO KOUTY NAD DESNOU BRANCH

July 12, 2009. This branch is typical of the many small Czech Railways branches but is rather unique in that it is privately operated. It is 19 km. long and hosts 20 trains a day, fulfilling a vital role for the community.

Station stops en route (with km in brackets) are:
Sumperk(0)
Vikyrovice u pensionu(2)
Vikyrovice (3)
Vikyrovice-Lesni (4)
Petrov nad Desnou(6)
Rapotin Zastavks (7)
Rapotin(8)
Velke Losiny103)
Velke Losiny Zastavska(11)
Loucna nad Desnou-Filipova(14)
Loucna nad Desnou (15)
Loucna nad Desnou Rejhotice (17)
Kouty nad Desnou(19)

At Petrov there is a very short 3km. branch to Sobotin with an intermediuate station at Petrov nad Desnou Zastavska (l km) and this branch sees fourteen trains a day. There will be a separate article on this branch later.

Branch starts at Sumperk. Normal train is a two car class 814 set. A Class 710 covers the Sobotin branch.The pictures are very ordinary but this shows the ordinariness of the Czech branch which is normally relatively flat, lightly engineered but which plays a vital role in the transport of the community. Ths line, in particular becomes invaluable for bring people to the ski resort in winter. It also has the current major advantage that it was rebuilt after the 1997 flood disaster so as branch lines go is at the top end in terms of condition.

REST OF PHOTOS GOING IN TODAY. COME BACK TOMORROW.

THE DESNÁ VALLEY MUNICIPALITIES ASSOCIATION - RECENT LINE HISTORY

Short introduction
The 1997 flood was the impulse for founding the Desná Valley Municipalities Association. This microregion was established in October 1997 by the representatives of Sobotín, Rapotín, Velké Losiny and Loucná nad Desnou municipalities in order to restore the damaged railway line. Later, other municipalities on the railway line – Vikyrovice, Hrabešice, Rejchartice and Vernirovice – joined the Association. The microregion was established as a voluntary municipal association according to the Act No. 128/2000 Coll. On Municipalities. Microregions have a statute of budget organizations which means that they are not suitable for business purposes.

The “Železnice Desná“ (ŽD) railway line was reconstructed in several phases. During the process 5 new stations were built and 3 existing ones underwent reconstruction. Apart from the reconstruction of the line and bridges, the security system was modernized as well.

It took several years of difficult negotiations with Ceské Dráhy (Czech Railways), the ministries and the Prime Minister to completely privatize the railway line. Finally, it was decided on 16th December 2002 that the state property (so called Šumperk lines and its rolling stock) would be transferred free of charge into the ownership of the Desná Valley Municipalities Association and a contract was signed.

The microregion has an elected body (Presidium - 7 members and General Meeting – 13 members) that are involved in strategic planning and implementation of particular activities and projects.

Currently, the line operator is SART – stavby a rekonstrukce, a.s. Šumperk, and the provider of railway transport is Veolia Transport Morava,a.s.

The railway line operator SART – stavby a rekonstrukce, a.s. Šumperk is responsible for securing activities related to recovery of the line (e.g. train dispatchers, maintenance and repairs of railways beds and track structures, operation in winter, snow removal, checking the railway lines, operation of communications and security systems, etc.). The operator rents the railway line and its necessary properties, including the train stops, from the microregion.

Railway transport provider Veolia Transport Morava a.s. is contracted by the microregion to provide passenger and freight transport. This company, however, provides only passenger transport (engine drivers, conductors and commercial workers), the freight transport being subcontracted from Ceské dráhy (Czech Railways). Veolia Transport Morava a.s. has signed a contract for leasing the rolling stock from the microregion (the Desná Valley Municipalities Association is the owner of the rolling stock).

Before the flood CD (Czech Railways) stated they had 73 employees there, nowadays both companies employ only about 37 employees.

Today all level crossings on the main road are fitted with the highest level security systems. The latest innovation has been the installation of industrial cameras on the railway station in Kouty nad Desnou for online monitoring of meteorological conditions in summer and winter time and also for ensuring and enhancement of security.

Passenger transport is not available between midnight and 4 a.m. The timetable for trains is modified and approved annually. Any changes in the timetable are coordinated with other railway lines and transport operators. There are 15 stops on the 22-km “Železnice Desná” railway line. Another stop – Velké Losiny Chateau – is ready for opening this year. The number of transported passengers per year amounts to 700,000.

The present leaders of the microregion have adopted a conceptual decision to further develop the railway line in relation to the expected massive development of tourism in the region. One of the aims is to extend the line in direction of the newly built ski resort in Kouty nad Desnou. Another aim is the electrification of the line as a result of the same process which the Šumperk – Zábreh na Morave line is now undergoing. It is hoped that these planned activities will improve the travelling possibilities and comfort for both tourists and local communters.

All investments are provided by the Municipalities Association. The investments are divided into three parts:

1) Investment into the railways tracks, including the security system, is secured by the Association and become its property. Investments are financed from different sources – The State Fund for Transport Infrastructure (SFDI), The Regional Authority of the Olomouc Region and partly from our own financial resources.

2) Investments into the rolling stock is provided from various sources. The main sources are The Ministry of Transport and The Regional Authority of the Olomouc Region. In this area there has been major reconditioning all rolling stock. Today, the whole rolling stock is in the microregion colors - green and yellow. In 2008 there was a grant for “Modernization and reconstruction of the railway vehicles, types 810 and 010” called “Desná” which are used on the branch. The total investment amounted to over CZK 21 mil.

3) It is not possible to use funding from The State Fund for Transport Infrastructure (SFDI) for investments into the station buildings and railway stops as the buildings have multiple function and usage – for example, they may also serve as flats, waiting rooms, restaurants, information centers, administrative facilities, etc. The latest investments were co-financed by the PHARE 2003 program – the total investment into the reconstruction of the Kouty nad Desnou railway station amounted to CZK 6.5 mil. Future investments into this area will be sourced from The Regional Operational Program Central Moravia and The Renewal of Countryside Program of the Olomouc Region.

THE SPA VELKÉ LOSINY – LÁZNE VELKÉ LOSINY
The spa at Velké Losiny is one of the oldest in Moravia. It lies in the foothills of the Jeseníky Mountains near the town of Šumperk. The spa district is made up of four pavilions from the turn of the century and a park with many precious plants, rhododendrons and rosebays. Velké Losiny is a unique place thanks to its perfectly preserved, operational paper mill. The paper produced here is used by the president of the Czech Republic. The spa at Velké Losiny brings together the best aspects of large spa towns – a tranquil environment set in a beautiful landscape.

The warm sulphur-rich spring water is used to treat various neurological complaints, respiratory disease, rheumatism, arthritis and back and joint pains. There are also various procedures designed to easy recovery after fractures and joint replacement operations. Visitors can enjoy angling (without an angling permit) in the spa park where they will also find a hire centre with angling equipment. The surrounding area is ideal for light and demanding hiking and cycling trips.

Rich history of sulphur thermal baths in Velké Losiny dates back to 16th century and it classifies them among the oldest Moravian spas with the longest tradition. The first written mention on “warm baths in Losiny“ comes from 1562. Beneficial effects of local springs were highly appreciated by doctor Tomáš Jordán of Klauseburk already in 1580, in his work “On healing waters, or on Moravian warm baths“. For other visitors it can be attractive thanks to its extensive natural English park, outdoor thermal swimming pool and cultural life of a health resort.

In the village of Velké Losiny are situated 5 warm or cold sulphur-rich spring forth water. Temperature of the water springs is approximately 36 degree of Celsium. The warm water springs are used to treat various neurological complaints, respiratory disease, rheumatism, arthritis and back and joint pains.

The Thermal Spa Velké Losiny have been a member of Spa and wellness network of Hotels called ROYAL SPA since October 2008. Planning of the reconstruction of the main buildings situated in spa park is now underway. Reconstruction will be operated by donation from Regional operational program Central Moravia and the owners expect 20 million CZK for investment in the spa. General repair for company - Lázne Velké Losiny s.r.o. will cost more than 70 million CZK.

Thanks to Ivo Škrabal for the above history.

Updated July 12, 2009.