Usti-nad-Labem, Northen Czechia

Usti-nad-Labem

 

Already in the 13th century, during the reign of Vaclav the 1st, Usti-nad-Labem became known as a crossing of important trade roads. In the 19th century, this region was really blessed by the flourishing of growing industry, as well as by the developing of railways and water transport. Today, Usti-nad-Labem, with its population of 96 thousands, is the administrative and commercial centre of Ustecky region-thanks to the strategically unique situation on the crossroads of major speed-, rail- and waterways, which  makes this region very attractive for investors. Highly developed transportation infrastructure is the major factor for successful investment. Let’s look at this fact from today’s point of view.

Usti-nad-Labem is situated on the busy freeway D8 which forms a one fourth of the distance of the broad corridor Berlin-Prague-Bratislava-Budapest-Sofia-Istanbul. Although the town offers, with its 4 rail stations, the comfort of railroad transportation, as well as river traffic with its Labsky waterway-Pardubice and Chvaletice-Usti-nad-Labem-Hamburg waterway- the preffered option is auto-transportation. Today, transit transport makes its way, using the first class road, towards Teplice and border towns Cinovec and Moldava. At present times, there are still two sections of the freeway D8 to be built in order to allow direct passage from Prague to the German border.  We’re talking about the strip running through Czech mountain region, between Usti and Lovosice, plus the section from Usti-nad-Labem to the German border. This North segment will be functioning in 2006. Besides that, a junction of  freeway D8 with the German Autobahn A17 (direction Dresden) is under construction.

The Jan Evangelist Purkine University, with its 5 faculties of social and economics studies, pedagogics and  faculties of Natural History and Environmental studies, was inaugurated in the year 1991. The faculty of Applied Arts and Design enjoys an excellent reputation. The same fine status has the Institute of Technics and Industrial Management. The town disposes of sufficient number of qualified work forces and professionals in the fields of mechanical engineering, machine-building, electrical engineering and construction.

In 1989 the major re-structuring of industry took place, resulting in a decrease of work places and unemployment rate of appx.12%. In the last years, though, the unemployment rate went down to 10%-thanks to arriving of  number of new investors. This pattern of decreasing unemployment remains stable.

To the number of major employers we can count the Masarik Memorial Hospital, Black & Decker with its 2000 workers, United Chemical and Steel Industry (1050 jobs), the Food and Chemical Industry represented by the concern SETUZA; the thermoelectric power station of Usti-nad-Labem with its 700 personnel , as well as Metal a.s., Czech Railroads and a network of large supermarkets.

 

     Development of the downtown

 

At the present times, the major project running in town, reveals itself as the plan of the Dutch company AM Development targeting areals of  the New Shopping Mall and adding to it The Forum, centre of entertainment and shopping. This gigantic project  will consume more than 1 Milliard Czech crowns.  As a result, a modern multi-auditorium movie theatre, restaurant, various shops and boutiques, services along with sufficient number of parking places , will be constructed. The municipal administration insists on the preservation of the historical appearance of the downtown and the creation of an adequate square in the close neighbourhood of the historical highlight of the town-the Church of Ascension of Virgin Mary.

         The history of this huge project goes back to 2005 when AM Development purchased the old marketplace and, after discussing of the further construction activities in the town, a co-operation agreement was signed. After the finishing of the first phase of construction –underground levels and up to the second story above ground- the municipal lots will be sold to the investor. 

The final version of the project has to be approved, and the developer has committed himself to demolish the old marketplace, which doesn’t contribute to the beauty of our town. Other construction activities take place on the territory of 1,4 ha-in accordance with the new plan of development of the downtown.

   The second important project is the renovation of the part of the centre and includes the central Mírové náměstí (Square of Peace) and adjacent streets Hrnčířská and Revoluční. The re-construction was started with the extensive renovation of the canalization network and will proceed with new paving, planting of trees, building of walkways and a pedestrian zone, etc. The City has received a subsidy in the amount of 110 million Czech crowns from the State and European authorities.

After finishing, in August 2006, of the re-construction of the central square, the new neighbouring quarters will arise.

In the North part of  Mírové náměstí the company AZ Sanace is getting ready to construct a multi-functional Palace of Success; besides that, the above mentioned company is negotiating with the municipal authorities  on a possibility of a development of adjacent lots. The company Plaza Centers showed its interest in other lots located in the centre of our city- locations on Masarikov Street, the city’s major transportation road, are among them. The lots are kept in the hands of a private individual.

  

     Re-building of the Central Rail Station

                              is emerging as a landmark project

 

Along with renovation of railways, which are considered to build up one fourth of the multi-sectional railway corridor, the remodelling of the Central Railway Station Usti-nad-Labem is about to get started-contrary to the original plans of the mere reconstruction of railways. Today, the complex remodelling of the entire Central Station is planned, including the Foyer and the underground passage to the platforms. This elaborate project provides an additional construction of the shopping passage joining the Station with the river promenade. The passage will tie together the so called Left-bank Terrace with newly built shops, services and parking facilities. As a part of the project, the construction of the covered passenger platforms will take place.

Remodelling of the Central station will influence the transportation system of the downtown and will result in the building of a two-direction tunnel under the Station.

Our municipal authorities signed an agreement  with the joint-stock company Czech Roadways and others. There was a possibility of financing  the remodelling of Central Station within the Czech Roadways project existing, which envisions the participation of a private investor.

 

 

         Usti-nad-Labem is the city of PPP projects (projects of Public-Private Partnerships)

 

One of the PPP projects presents itself as the building of the new Palace of Justice with the County Court and Usti-nad-Labem District Court , as well as the District State Municipality, Probation Agency and numerous notaries, lawyer offices, etc. There will be apprx. 600 lawyers finding their place on the premises of the Court.

The construction of the Palace of Justice, among with the creation of the court territory in Karlovy Vary, is considered to be the second phase of the PPP projects. The County Court already bought the necessary plots from the city of Usti. Ministry of Justice announced  a contest for a consultant, and all required steps will be taken in order to announce the competition for choosing its own partner. 

Another project which is eager to be included into the number of pilot RRR projects, will be arising of a territory of the Jan Evangelist Purkine University on the former premises of the Masarikov Memorial Hospital. The project called Campus adresses the solution of existing problems with the facilities and the centralization of the entire activities of the University in one place, as well as the creation of a valid basis for making other arrangements under the patronage of the University, such as conferences, exhibitions, ceremonies of entering of students, etc.  Taking into consideration the cost of this project-apprx. 3 milliard Czech crowns, being the PPP project includes also the obtaining of the required financing.

 

 

          What kind of possibilities for outdoor activities and tourism offers our city?

 

Usti-nad-Labem lays in the picturesque valley of the Elba river which makes its way through the Czech Mountains. Moving North from the town, you will find the Krusny Mountains and the Labsky sandstone formation fostering the beautiful Czech Switzerland with its huge popularity among Czech visitors.

You will be delighted by so many attractive places within the city itself. Middle of December 2006 the small castle Větruše will open its doors to the tourists-after the detailed reconstruction. It was a tumbledown, precious by the historical point of view building from the 19th century, when it was reconstructed by the city for the cost of 80 million Czech crowns.

Today, the numerous visitors of the castle and its surroundings are enjoying   sports facilities, tennis courts, a natural labyrinth, a mirror labyrinth and the Kid’s World. The restaurant of the castle is serviced by the local company Drinks Union, a producer of favourite local beer Zlatopramen.

The city is looking for an investor willing to finish a wing of the castle as a hotel for 80 to 140 guests. This outstanding project promises to be a very interesting opportunity for opening a high class hotel aiming discriminating clientele.

Another landmark building that awaits its reconstruction is the City Museum-the remodelling measurements of cost of 190 million Czech crowns are sponsored by the European Union, with its donation of the funds. For its further development, Usti-nad-Labem shall assume the credit in the amount of 1 milliard Czech krones from the European Investment Bank. This sum will be paid out within the next 7 years.

As a result of the flooding of former Chabařovický mine, a huge artificial lake, with its surface of 250 ha, came into existance. By cultivating the  surrounding banks, there could arise an opportunity for a new recreational zone featuring hotels and restaurants. The surroundings of lake Milada offer, for the next 3-4 years, numerous opportunities for participation of investors-as we can mention in these days, an evident interest can be noticed.

 

Our future

 

The city of Usti-nad-Labem is considered to be in the phase when the pilot projects are already emerging, claiming future funding by the Euripean Union-for the period from 2007 to 2013.

Among them, we could name the finishing of the re-construction works on the Winter Sports Stadium, building of the second ice skating rink and parking facilities, renovation of the Athletics Stadium; there is a necessity for the reconstruction of the Culture House (the estimated cost of it will be appx. 200 million Czech crowns). Numerous other projects are waiting to be realized-the entire cost would be as much as several milliards crowns.

Our city is paying attention to another major task, which could be described as the elimination and liquidation of not utilized and economically ineffective facilities within the city. The main obstacle here arises from a number of unsolved and unsettled questions of rights for Real property, as well as the unwillingness of present owners to settle the situation and co-operate with city.

 

Our focus is to help, by the means of all above mentioned measures, to raise the quality of life in our beautiful Usti-nad-Labem, satisfying the needs of the citizens and prospering of the city. This is what we hope for.

 

         The information material is given by Department of active policy of City Counsil, Usti-nad-Labem.


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