Minsk, the capital city of the former Soviet republic of Belarus, is located right in the centre of the country, roughly half way between Berlin and Moscow. In 1984 the first line of the Minsk Metro opened after eight years of construction. It was the first, and remains the only, metro in Belarus. With a length of 35.5 km, it currently has 28 stations on 2 lines.
Typical of other metro systems in the former Soviet Union, most stations have been luxuriously built. Each metro station is of architectural interest in its own right. Due to geological conditions the Minsk metro is very close to the surface (average 12-14 m). During construction of the Nemiga station, remains of an ancient city were found. Archeologists worked on the site for two years before works could proceed.
There were two major incidents in the Minsk Metro. In 1999, Niamiga station saw a stampede from a nearby concert following a thunderstorm, leaving 53 people dead. In 2011, the Oktyabrskaya station was the site of a terrorist bombing, when 15 people were killed.
Here is my selection of stations of particular architectural interest:
Named after the nearby National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, the station was opened during the first stage of the metro in June 1984. Designed by architects A.Zenzin and M.Pirogov, the station consists of two symmetrical rows of concrete pillars, which are clad with grey marble, and punctuated by stainless steel insets, which further enhance the symmetrical perspective. The station also features contrasting white marbled walls, a finned ceiling, and grey granite floor.
Frunzenskaya station was opened in December 1990. It’s platform features a dramatic vaulted roof unobstructed by columns. The vastness of the space is enhanced by the different surfaces: the horizontal wall tiles stretch the view seemingly to infinity; the horizontal lines on the floor makes the platform appear wider; the smooth vaulted roof, illuminated by concealed upward lighting, creates the illusion that one is standing under the open sky.
Opened on November 7, 2012 along with the metro stations of Mikhalova and Piatroushchyna.
Opened on December 31, 1990. The station is one of three on the Minsk Metro to have been built with an entrance in an existing building. It is almost identical in shape to Frunzenskaya station, differing in the choice of materials and colours. The adjacent Kastrychnitskaya station was the site of a bombing on April 11, 2011.
Opened on June 24, 1984. From 1992 to 2003 the station was renamed as “Ploschad’ Nezavisimosti” (Independence Square), but later the original name of the station was restored.
Opened on 5 September 2001.
Opened on July 3, 1995
Opened on December 31, 1990. It is located by the Niamiha Street, both being named after the Nyamiha River. In 1999, it was the site of the Nyamiha disaster, in which 53 people were crushed to death.
Opened on 31 December 1990
http://mic-ro.com/metro/metrocity.html?city=Minsk http://www.belarus.by/en/travel/transport-in-belarus/minsk-metro http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Minsk_Metro_stations http://www.urbanrail.net/eu/by/minsk/minsk.htm