Prokop railway station
Inside the station
|Location||Savski Venac, Belgrade
|Platforms||2 operational (5 planned)|
|Tracks||4 operational (10 planned)|
The Prokop railway station or Belgrade [Centre] railway station (Serbian Cyrillic: Железничка станица Београд Центар) is the new railway station as the core of the massive reconstruction of the Belgrade railway junction in Belgrade, the capital of Serbia that officially started 1974. Prokop is located in Belgrade's municipality of Savski Venac.
The unsuccessful, decades long attempted construction of the new central railway station of Belgrade was hampered by lack of funding problems to finish adjoining 14 km of tunnels, several railway bridges of whom the New Railroad Bridge across the Sava river, a new road network connecting to the city and technical installations. Plans call now for a partly completion of Prokop until 2010 which will leave only the entrance hall of the station for a later completion.
Prokop is located 5–6 kilometers south of downtown Belgrade to which it is directly connected by the Kneza Miloša street. It borders the area of former Zapadni Vračar on the north, Mostar and Senjak on the west and Dedinje on the south. It is bounded by three boulevards: Franše D'Eperea (actually, a highway), Vojvoda Putnik and Prince Aleksandar Karađorđević.
Prokop is located in the eastern section of the former neighborhood of Jatagan Mala. Previously, it was a geographical reference, as the area was located in the lower valley of the now underground stream of Mokroluški Potok. The earth and gravel were dug here and used to cover and drain the swamps on the Sava's right bank, so that neighborhoods of Savamala and Bara Venecija could be constructed, so as the building of Belgrade's central railway station. After the works were completed, the area around Mokroluški Potok was left as a steep, elongated cut in the ground and so got its name (Serbian prokop, cut or dug through). Jatagan Mala was demolished in mid and late 1960s. The population of modern local community of Prokop was 2,103 in 2002.
The ill-fated construction of new railway station which was supposed to replace the old one in Savamala spawns for decades. The official work began in 1977, it was halted in the 1980s, resumed in the 1990s and halted again in 2000. Originally, in the late 1960s, it was supposed to be constructed near the present interchange of Autokomanda, but the idea was suddenly dropped, and one of the major authorities at the time, Branko Žeželj, picked Prokop instead, which eventually brought to the incompletion of the Autokomanda interchange the way it should have been. Despite constant attempts to build it and upgrade it, after years of starting and then halting works and bankrupted companies, Prokop railway station is still just one of a dozen secondary stations in Belgrade.
After TV tower on Avala was destroyed in NATO bombing of Serbia 1999, certain Russian companies offered to build a new, higher (300 meters) TV tower in Prokop. No one took it seriously so the news was mostly used for publicity purposes.
As a curiosity, daily Politika from March 8, 2007 reprinted its own article from 1957 about Prokop. The article, titled "For how long will Prokop defy the construction of the city", colors Prokop as a black hole in the city center and describes the project of the reconstruction of the Franše d'Eperea street (modern highway) which would include an artificial lake with lots of restaurants, foreseeing that Prokop will be the most beautiful part of Belgrade.
The city's largest brewery, BIP is located near the highway.
Beovoz train entering Prokop main station in Belgrade
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Prokop railway station.|
- Clip of the planned railway hub with metro interchange
- Clip about the Belgrade railway hub and Beovoz commuter network