The Moscow Metro is 95 percent ready for the FIFA Confederations Cup 2017. The preparations will be completed by June 12, said First Deputy Head of the Moscow Metro for Strategic Development and Customer Service Roman Latypov.
“The metro’s main job is to offer transport for fans. We had a major plan with more than 300 points that we need to finish before the FIFA Confederations Cup. We have completed 95 percent of it and the day after tomorrow this figure will be 98 percent. By the end of the week we will be 100 percent ready. Every point will be completed,” he said.
According to Mr Latypov, very few metro systems in the world have audio advertising. For the most part metro passengers hear only service-related announcements and the Moscow Metro has followed suit.
Thus, the amount of information on safety in the metro and transit announcements have been increased by 40 percent. The overall number of announcements that passengers hear on escalators has been reduced by 20 percent owing to the decision to reduce advertising starting June 1.
For passenger convenience, signs with the words “Entry” and “No Passage” on the doors have been replaced with metro maps and special stickers on using the metro during FIFA events.
“Now there is a large white plate depicting a station. The information is translated into English and interchanges are listed. This is a new navigation standard and we’ll continue using it,” Mr Latypov said.
Another new item that riders may notice is pennants. Pennants will be placed at ticket windows that are serviced by cashiers who graduated from the metro’s foreign language courses. Even now a cashier who speaks English and sometimes two languages is working in at least one lobby at Live Communication information desks, at Circle Line stations and other stations that are popular with tourists. Some employees speak French, German and Chinese. Pennants will be placed by their windows before the end of the week. Information signs at 84 stations and in underpasses have been translated into English and ticket vending machines have been adjusted.
All the required information, including transit guides in the city, has been prepared for fans. The first guide is a fold-out map that will be given to English-speaking volunteers. Metro maps in Russian and English will be issued next.
There are also instructions on what to do in an emergency. It describes what should be done, how to call for help and whom to address if a passenger falls on the tracks or loses his belongings or documents.
The city’s visitors will be able to find out about railway stations, parking, transit routes, bringing of bicycles onboard, river transport, major city parks and car-sharing programmes. This transport guidebook also includes information in five languages on what may or may not be brought into a stadium or the metro.
“This is an exhaustive guide on all Moscow transport,” Mr. Latypov said.
He said the Moscow Metro will offer souvenirs and trademark products during the FIFA evens including caps, “fan hands,” key rings, a limited edition Troika card, and whistles that can be used in the city if not in the stadium.
Metro maintenance will be suspended. First Deputy Head of the Moscow Metro Dmitry Doshchatov said they have decided to cancel maintenance windows in the run-up to the Confederations Cup.
He said they had planned 13 maintenance windows for this year. Two, on the Kaluzhskaya-Rizhskaya Line, have already been conducted. The next maintenance window will take place in the latter half of July, while repairs on some stations will be carried out step by step without closing the stations.
The Confederations Cup will take place from 17 June to 2 July in four Russian cities – Moscow, St. Petersburg, Sochi and Kazan. In Moscow, four matches will be played at Spartak Stadium. The schedule is as follows: Chile vs Cameroon on 18 June; Russia vs Portugal on 21 June; and Australia vs Chile on 25 June. The final match for third place will be held 2 July at Spartak Stadium.