A Streetcar Named Desire

Well, kind of, after all Marlon Brando did play a Polish immigrant named Stanley Kowalski in this 1951 classic.

Baba Jaga (yaga) is one of Wrocław’s oldest operating streetcars, and on a beautiful Sunday afternoon Karolina and I decided to take a ride down the memory lane. Designed in year 1913 production started in 1924, late due to WWI, at the Linke-Hofmann Werke plant right here in Wrocław. It’s worth pointing out that Wrocław was then German ‘Breslau’ and these streetcars are in fact designed and made by Germany. In 1932 it received a 3rd place at the Worlds Fair in Paris for its advance in technology and it was the first streetcar to have a metal frame and full glass windows.

Shown here is the oldest with the newest. Almost one hundred years apart, the latest and greatest streetcars in Wrocław are made by Skoda in the Chech Republic.

The trip costs about $1.50 and takes 45 minutes from in front of the Opera House to the Zoo and the Centenial Hall. It only has one or two stops in between and simply rides on by through all the stops along the way. Most people waiting for regular streetcars were pretty surprised to see it coming, but pretty much everyone smiled when they saw it. It’s a nice gesture from the city to keep these things operational one day a week to show people the roots of public transportation in Wrocław.

Here’s a little video I put together from the trip. It’s all narrated in Polish by the streetcar conductor himself. It was obvious that driving it was his passion just by listening to how emotionally he talked about it and how much information he had on the subject. Hope you enjoy it.

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