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THE DEEPEST STATION. The deepest station of the capital's subway system is presently Park Pobedy (Victory Park), which opened on the Arbatsko-Pokrovskaya line on May 6, 2003. Buried nearly 85 meters underground, it is far deeper than most stations, whose depth rarely exceeds 50 meters.
THE SHALLOWEST STATION. Just five meters of soil separate passengers from sunlight at Pechatniki station. Part of its roof even pokes out a few meters above ground, and care was taken to backfill the site during construction.
THE LONGEST STATION. Including the approach corridors, Vorobyovy Gory (Sparrow Hills) on the Sokolniki line stretches 284 meters, a record for the Moscow Metro. It takes 4 minutes to walk from one end of the platform to the other. Opened in 1959, it was also the world's first subway station to be built on top of a bridge over water.
THE MOST LUXURIOUS STATION. As conceived by the constructors, Komsomolskaya station on the Circle line was to serve as a gateway to Moscow and stun arriving visitors by the majesty and power of the Soviet capital. Therefore, no expense was spared: the station became the apotheosis of Stalinist Empire style and gigantomania. Even the diameter of the central tunnel, at 11.5 meters, exceeds the standard by a full 2 meters. Because of this, the station possesses the highest ceiling in the capital's subway, which is decorated with eight mosaic panels made of smalt and precious stones.
THE NARROWEST STATION. The narrowest station of the Moscow Metro is Volgogradsky Prospect on the Tagansko-Krasnopresnenskaya line with a non-standard platform width and distance between station columns of just 4 meters.
THE CURVIEST STATION. Alexandrovsky Sad on the Filevskaya line boasts a steep radius of curvature and then some: fully 750 meters. Every time a train departs, the on-duty supervisor inspects the tail from the middle of the platform, since the rear compartments are not visible from the driver's cab. The locomotive crew can only set off when permission is granted. The Moscow Metro is home to five other stations with arc-shaped platforms: Pyatnitskoe Shosse, Kutuzovskaya, Zyablikovo, Mezhdunarodnaya, and Vystavochnaya, but their curvature is less pronounced.
THE MOST FRICKLE NAME. The frequent reversals of political fortune in the 20th century, whereby a prominent figure could suddenly become an enemy of the people, led many stations to lose their names in favor of one more in tune with the prevailing political mood. The most frequent victim of the fluctuations of the political elite was Okotny Ryad station on the Sokolniki line, which has been renamed no fewer than four times. That was the name it went by for the first 20 peacful years of its existence...
Then, in 1955, it was rebranded rather mundanely as "Imeni Kaganovicha" in honor of Lazar Kaganovich, who had attained the zenith of his career. However, two years later, when Kaganovich was declared a member of an anti-Party group and removed from all posts, the station was hastily renamed back to Okhotny Ryad. In 1961, as part of the renaming of several streets in Moscow, the station was christened "Marx Prospect," before being reunited with its historical appellation in 1990 on the eve of the collapse of the Soviet Union.
THE LONGEST RUN. The longest run in the Moscow Metro exists between Strogino and Krylatskoe stations. Trains cover the 6.625 km stretch between them in 7 minutes.
THE BUSIEST STATION. The dubious honor of being the busiest station belongs to Vykhino at the end of the Tagansko-Krasnopresnenskaya line. According to official data, the passenger traffic exceeds 170,000 people a day. At rush hour, the entire station is packed to the gills, and passengers who manage to get to the platform generally have to wait for the second or third train before embarking.
THE LONGEST UNDER CONSTRUCTION. Spartak station on the Tagansko-Kasnopresnenskaya line holds the anti-record for the most protracted construction period. Laid almost 40 years ago in 1975, at the same time as the Oktyabrskoe Pole-Planernaya extension of the Tagansko-Krasnopresnenskaya line, it still hasn't been opened.
Spartak station was originally intended to serve residents of a micro region due to be sited at Tushino airfield. But the housing project was abandoned and with it plans for the station, which was mothballed in mid-construction, the entrances being filled up with soil
In the 21st century, the Mayor's Office decided to resume work on the construction of Spartak, which will now serve the new Open Arena soccer stadium. According to the construction schedule, it will carry its first passengers in March 2014.