Hell has frozen over. The immovable staircase in Krakow after 6 years…. will move!

The immovable staircase in Krakow is still standing after six years, 19 renovations and PLN 360,000 of taxpayers’ money spent. But what goes around comes around. The Cracow City Roads Authority has just issued a communiqué announcing that the 20th consecutive renovation will soon take place, which will cost “only” PLN 4.1 million. Will Krakow’s road engineers this time move heaven, earth and stairs to finally end this farce? We hope so. Although with the 5th renovation we lost faith, after the 14th we lost hope, and now we don’t even have any particular expectations. Maybe this is the purpose of these stairs? Maybe it’s an installation that should become a tourist attraction – because next to the Wawel Castle, the Cloth Hall and the Forum Hotel, it’s one of the most commented on “properties” in Krakow. All right – enough mischief. Let’s get down to facts!

The immovable staircase in Krakow – since when does it not work?

Let’s start from the beginning. The escalator at Krakow bus station was built in 2005 as part of the reconstruction of the station and the creation of a link between the railway station and the bus station. The first failure occurred in November 2018, when the staircase going up failed. Just four months later, in February 2019, a fault stopped the stairs going downwards. The stairs have therefore been out of service for around six years.

Famous among the residents of Krakow, the stairs have already been repaired 19 times, costing taxpayers more than PLN 360,000 (at least until May 2022), and the stairs were not working and are still not working. Today we already know that the stairs will be replaced in their entirety. The replacement will begin on 5 February – at which point the stairs are to be dismantled. As we read on the City of Krakow website, the planned timetable for the works is as follows:

  • february-April – demolition works and preparation of the construction for the new stairs
  • april-May – installation of new stairs
  • may – installation of the canopy.

The contractual deadline for completion of the works is 17 July, at a cost of over PLN 4.1 million.

The culprit has been found. It is… rain!

Rainwater (also known as rain) was blamed for the failure. This time Krakow officials did their homework on nature, consulted meteorologists, climatologists and local shamans, and then decided with some incredulity that it could rain in Krakow. So this time, the stairs will be covered! Great, but couldn’t it have been done straight away?

The Cracow City Roads Authority, a company subordinate to the city hall, is responsible for the stairs. “The reason was the wear of the step chains and corrosion of the structural elements caused by rainwater” – explain representatives of the press office of the Cracow City Roads Management in an interview with Onet journalists

Laughter through tears. We are not accusing anyone of ill will here, but we have to admit that this example shows very well the total absurdity in Polish offices. Procrastination, bureaucracy and sloppiness are a disease that plagues the Polish administration. We keep our fingers crossed for the success of the mission to run the stairs! If Copernicus moved the Earth, Cracovian road-builders will surely move the stairs! :)

It is worth adding that this is not the only immovable escalator. A similar engineering marvel can be found in Katowice, which we wrote about HERE: https://www.whitemad.pl/katowice-ruchome-schody-ciagle-stoja-pkp-naprawia-je-od-dwoch-lat-zdjecia/

Read also: Architecture in Poland | Krakow | Public transport | Railway station | Interesting facts | Archialert

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