There are few places where one can find such a landmark, which would be visited by more than 6 million people every day and which would stretch through the whole city. But the Moscow Metro is it. Today, the Moscow Metro is the world's second longest metro system.
The first line was opened to the public on 15 May 1935, but this was preceded by several other projects that had not been implemented. The first proposal of the building of underground public transport in Moscow appeared in 1875. Then the issue was brought up in 1902, 1913 and 1925, but none of the projects had been adopted, either because there was no money for implementation or they were lobbied by conservative government. However, the plan for the construction of the Moscow Metro was approved on June 15, 1931.
The first line was 11.5 kilometers long and had 13 stations (from station "Sokolniki" to "Culture Park" with the branch to "Smolenskaya"). During the World War II the metro stations were used as air-raid shelters, and 217 children were born here during the air raids. Also, during the war, the Moscow Metro did not work on October 16, 1941, since there was the order to blow up the metro. But the order was canceled, and this was the only day when the Moscow Metro was not working.
When the battle for Moscow was won, a new phase of subway construction started. During the war years, 7 more stations were built. The next stage of the construction began after the war and included the Koltsevaya Line and the deepest part of the Arbatskaya Line. The basis for the construction of deep stations was the beginning of the Cold War. A deep underground were planned as shelters in the event of nuclear war.
In the 1960s radial branches of metro connected to the Koltsevaya (Ring) Line were built. In 1970-1990 construction works began outside the Ring. And in the late 80s, it was decided to build a long subway line beyond the ring, which had to run to the sleeping areas and airports outside the Moscow Ring Road.
In the 2000s, the subway runs beyond the Moscow Ring Road, light-rail lines the Monorail were built, There was the first station built with private money ("Myakinino"). And by the end of 2010 the total number of stations of the Moscow subway reached 182, located at 12 lines (including the light rail lines).
Moscow metro is the second-most-heavily-used rapid transit system after Tokyo subway. The average daily passenger traffic is over 6.6 million or 2.4 billion people per year. The busiest station is "Vykhino." During the rush hours the average density of passengers in the subway car is 7.7 people per 1 square meter, which is twice as much as the rate.
The fare is paid contactless disposable tickets. The Moscow Metro is open from about 05:30 a.m. until 01:00 a.m. During the holidays the work hours can be extended to 2 a.m. The average interval between trains is 2.5 minutes. During rush hours, the minimum interval is 90 seconds.
Also, there are a lot of interesting facts about the Moscow Metro. For example, the deepest station "Park Pobedy" (Victory Park) is located at a depth of 84 meters, and has the longest escalator of 127 meters and a lifting height of 63 meters. Some metro lines feature unique trains: "Watercolor" train, decorated with reproductions of Andriyaka's paintings and masterpieces of Moscow museums, "Red Arrow-75", decorated in the style of a corporate train of the Russian railways, "Reading Moscow" train has quotes from different books of Russian classics painted on its walls.
The ecological situation in the Moscow metro also should be noted: according to research the stations are inhabited by about 500 homeless dogs. The interesting thing is that they live in some stations, and look for food in the others, and use the metro not only as a shelter, but also as a transport.
Another feature of the Moscow metro is sealed doors that are installed in the tunnels of the stations. They are designed to protect people from possible nuclear strike, and are able to prevent the flooding of the metro in case of flowage. In addition, a subway staff is regularly exercising and security system is constantly being tested.
By the way, there are several books devoted to the Moscow Metro, which has become a haven for people after a nuclear war. The fantastic books "Metro 2033" and "Metro 2034" by Dmitry Glikhovsky became best sellers. They explore the lives of people at the stations, which became their home. Besides, there are other books devoted to the Moscow metro. Also there are few songs about the Moscow Metro. Many episodes were filmed in the Moscow metro. It is an important place in the culture of the Moscow residents. Today it is hard to imagine Moscow without its underground part, which each year continues to grow.