Metro, MCC, surface transit and suburban trains
All-night metro service will allow Muscovites and tourists to see the New Year in at home or at their friends and then to continue the celebration in the streets and parks. Deputy Mayor and head of the Department of Transport and Road Infrastructure Development, Maxim Liksutov, reported on the extended New Year’s and Christmas service hours at a Moscow Government meeting.
For the first time, the Moscow Metro, the Moscow Central Circle (MCC) and the most popular bus routes, 153 in all, which is 16 percent of the total, will be available all night from 31 December to 1 January. “This will greatly contribute to millions of Muscovites being able to visit the events in the extensive programme prepared by the city authorities for the New Year holiday,” Mr Liksutov said. Metro trains will run at 10 minute intervals and the MCC up to 12 minutes between trains.
“This year, considering that the metro and the MCC will operate around the clock, we will increase the number of buses, trams and trolley-buses by ten times. There will be about 1,500 in all. This is for the public’s convenience,” the Deputy Mayor said.
On Christmas Eve from 6 to 7 January, public transit service hours will also be extended. The metro and the MCC will run until 2 am. Surface transit will be available until 3 am. This is 162 routes, which is 17 percent of the total routes.
Suburban train service will also be extended on New Year’s and Christmas eves, on average until 3 am. From 1 to 7 January, the commuter trains will run on the Saturday schedule and Aeroexpress trains will run as usual. “According to our estimates, about 4.5 million people will use commuter trains during the New Year’s holiday,” the Deputy Mayor said.
Information about transport circulation, traffic shut downs and restrictions is posted on the Moscow integrated traffic portal. During the New Year holiday riders can call the Moscow Transport contact centre 24 hours, 7 days a week at +7 (495) 539-54-54; 3210. Calls are free for MTS, Beeline and Megafon subscribers.
Free parking and New Year’s trains
Parking will be free from 1 to 8 January. “This won’t complicate the traffic situation in the city, because during the New Year’s holidays the number of cars in Moscow drops by about 20-25 percent,” Mr Liksutov said. At the same time, parking and stopping enforcement will not be relaxed on those days. The Deputy Mayor added: “Along with the police, we will see that drivers follow the traffic regulations.”
Traffic in some streets will be limited for the duration of the holiday due to festive events. “Most of the temporary restrictions will be in the Central Administrative Area,” Mr Liksutov said.
From 28 December, metro passengers will be able to plunge into the festive atmosphere on the Circle Line in a specially decorated New Year’s train. On those days, participants in the Music in the Metro project will perform New Year’s songs and melodies. “At 11:50 pm on 31 December, the President’s greeting will be broadcast live in trains and on the escalators at all metro stations,” Mr Liksutov said.
Three themed New Year’s trams started running on 27 December. Some city bus, trolley-bus and tram operators are wearing Father Frost or Snow Maiden costumes and will offer New Year’s greetings.
On 29 and 30 December Father Frost and the Snow Maiden will congratulate passengers at railway stations. Passengers travelling with children will be offered small gifts.
Reinforced security and screening
Security measures will be tightened on all public transit during the holiday. Reinforced luggage and passenger security checks will be organised, as well as a 100 percent inspection of buses and trams, metro trains, MCC trains, platforms, stations, halls and underground crossings. Experts will enforce transport parking and stopping regulations, stop vehicles without license plates or with unreadable numbers and will investigate unattended or abandoned vehicles.