The metro of Moscow is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful in the world. In 1933, the greatest architects of the soviet era left their mark on the cityscape by creating one of the most important cultural heritage sites in Russia. When Stalin and the Communist Party’s Central Committee, the Bolsheviks, launched the development in 1931, it became a symbol of architectural prowess that was unequalled in civil engineering at that time.
The builders were honored and the All-Union Leninist Young Communist League that led the construction received the Order of Lenin. Out of the most beautiful marble and white stone structures in Moscow, was the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, which was destroyed by Stalin to make way for a «Palace of the Soviet project». The city’s make up was inspired by the overwhelming feeling of patriotism that existed at that time. The worker’s union, with help from Joseph Stalin, built the most beautiful underground world, an empire of marble and stone palaces with royal aesthetics.
The revolution and the defense of the motherland were two key ideas of the USSR and its socialist regime. These ideas were celebrated in mosaics and sculptures that appeared as early as when the line first opened on 15th May 1935. The metro, which was named after Vladimir Ilitch Lenin, was designed to showcase the biggest communist regime in the world. With more than 8 million visitors a day, today it’s one of the largest metro systems in Europe, and holds the world record for timekeeping. This palatial network is considered as Moscow’s second urban attraction and allows visitors to step back in time to the days of the Soviets. This underground theatre, with its visually stunning design and its passengers that seems to be from another age, no wonder it’s also a major source of inspiration for Russian cinema and theatre.
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At the Krasnopresnenskaya station, the benches come from the Cathedral of Christ-Sauveura which was built in 1839 and 1883 in memory of the victory of Russia on the Great Army of Napoleon I (1812). Destroyed under Stalin in 1931, the benches remained intact. Metro architects decided to install them in some stations.
At the Kievskaya station, sellers are quickly spotted, it is strictly forbidden to sell flowers inside and outside the metro. These are usually retired women who to round the end of the month sell a few bouquets.
The station Taganskaya opened in 1950 offers one of the most beautiful cupolas of the network. It is common to see at popular days many balloons hanging from the ceiling of the stations.
The Novoslobodskaya station located on the circle has the distinction of being one of the favorite stations of the Moscovites and the tourists. The mangement of the metro placed in front of each statue and sculpture a mark on the ground for the selfies. Novoslobodskaya was opened in 1952 and symbolizes the greatness of the socialism and the beauty of the Soviet homeland.
The stairs of the station Komsomolskaya look like an enormous baroque cave. Moscow metro stations are among the deepest in the world. With more than 500,000 people sheltered there during the 1941 bombing of German aviation. 217 babies were born during the bombing.
At the Kievskaya station and as well in all the stations of the circle, the marbles are lustered 3 times a day by the cleaning services. The station was opened in 1954.
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With more than 8 million passengers a day, Moscow Metro is one the largest in Europe and holds the world record in respect of schedules. The punctuality of traffic reaches 99.99%. During peak hours, almost 3 hours in the morning and 3 hours in the evening, there is a train every 90 seconds. The old oars will disappear within a few years to make room for more modern oars.
On May 9, the Russians celebrate the victory over Nazism, this important day for the Russian population is reflected in street parades throughout Russia. The young and the oldest wear the ribbon of St. George, symbol of Russian patriotism and the military cap.
In the Teatralnaya station, Yuri plays a concerto, he has auditioned to play in one of the 15 authorized stations. Each year 200 people are selected out of 1000 applications. Nothing extravagant, pop gentillette, classical music and patriotic Soviet songs during the national holidays. Once again, everything is organized so that there are no overflows, or musical extravagences.
In the Arbatskaya station, which is one of the busiest, it is difficult to walk through the crowd at peak times.
The stations in the circle are cleaned 3 times a day. The technique used is as follows; The employees of the cleaning services use sawdust, which makes it possible to sand, and polish the marble. This is an ancient technique still use today.
The Plochtchad Ilitcha station is one of the most austere stations in the network. It is not only the statue of Lenin that is involved but also the choice of marbles.
In stations and metros, we can determine the direction of the metro (towards the center or towards the periphery) according to the voice indicating the station. If the voice is masculine then we move towards the center, whereas if the voice is feminine we move away from it.
On May 9, the Russians celebrate the victory over Nazism. With 30 million dead, there is at least one Russian out of three who has lost a relative, a colleague, a friend. On 9 May, the heroes who died for the homeland are posted throughout the cities of Russia. Return of the parade near the Red Square.
It is not unusual to see military costumes, the spirit of the military school appeared in Russia as early as the eighteenth century.
Irina Serpova (61 years old) has been working in the metro for 14 years. She takes a tea in a room for rest. With 12000 (190 Euros) Rubles per month, pensioners have trouble managing their daily lives. Irina decided to continue working in order to keep her decent salary. The retirement for women is set at 55 years.
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During periods of flu epidemic, the stations are cleaned every hour. The Novokouznetskaïa station was opened in 1943.