More than half a million passengers on weekdays: the growth of MCC's popularity throughout the year

More than half a million passengers on weekdays: the growth of MCC's popularity throughout the year
The demand for the Moscow Central Circle is growing due to the creation of convenient interchanges connecting its stations with other urban transport. At present, MCC offers transfers to 23 metro stations, nine railway platforms, and the surface transport.

Currently, the Moscow Central Circle (MCC) trains are capable of carrying more than half a million passengers every weekday, that is 25 percent more than last April, when more than 400,000 people took advantage of the circular railway.

The MCC is an ongoing record breaker for the number of its passengers. On 3 April, Lastochka trains transported almost 562,000 people.

Since the beginning of the year, more than 45 million passengers have used the circular railway, that is 17 percent more than in the same period last year (with its passenger traffic being more than 38 million people).

Previously, metro passengers had to make several transfers to different lines or travel a long way to the required station. With the launch of a new circle, trips  have become faster on many routes. On average,  using the MCC, citizens can save 9 to 16 minutes.

"The Moscow Central Circle is gaining an increasing popularity among Moscow residents and guests of the capital due to its convenient interchanges. Nowadays, MCC provides possibility to change for 23 stations of the radial metro lines and nine railway platforms. Besides, each station provides convenient interchanges to buses, trolleybuses or trams. This year, the MCC and the Moscow transport system integration is to continue," said Maxim Liksutov, Deputy Moscow Mayor, Head of the Department of Transport and Road Infrastructure Development.

During this year, Severyanin railway platform in the Yaroslavskoye direction is to be relocated closer to the MCC’s Rostokino station. An overhead passage will connect Likhobory station with the NATI station platform. In addition, the integration of the Streshnevo MCC station and the Leningradskaya station platform will be completed throughout this year with a Streshnevo transport interchange hub constructed. Last year, Leningradskaya station was relocated closer to the MCC, so now it is possible to change from a suburban train to the circular railway in just four minutes.

The Moscow Central Circle operation

The Moscow Central Circle was launched in September 2016 with  31 stations currently open. Changes, or transfers, from the metro to the MCC and back are free within 90 minutes. Changing between metro stations and the MCC typically takes only 10-12 minutes.

The shortest and most convenient changes do not require going outside. Indoor transfers are available at the Mezhdunarodnaya, Leninsky Prospekt, Cherkizovskaya, Vladykino and Kutuzovskaya stations.  Maps and signage direct passengers to other modes of transit.  Maps of the MCC and changes to suburban trains and metro stations, as well as signs pointing to exits with other surface transit modes, including route numbers, are placed at the stations.

Last year, Shelepikha and Khoroshovskaya stations were opened at the metro’s Big Circle Line. They provide transfers to the MCC. Last March, Okruzhnaya metro station opened on the Lyublinsko-Dmitrovskaya Line, which is connected to the same name MCC station. The MCC launch has reduced crowding at the radial metro lines and central railway stations.

Comfortable and fast Lastochka trains run along the circular railway.  Their maximum speed is 120 km/h with an average one about 50 km/h. The trains are equipped with air conditioning, bio toilets, information screens, free Wi-Fi, charging sockets and bicycle racks.

In 2017, the MCC reduced the service intervals of train traffic in the morning and evening rush hours from 6 to 5 minutes with 12 to 10 minutes in usual time. It allowed for an increase in the number of passenger seats by 20 percent. Due to the constant growth of passenger traffic at the MCC this year, the intervals are to be reduced again. During rush hours, Lastochka trains are to arrive to the platforms every four minutes. Reducing service intervals by just one minute will increase the number of passenger seats by 25 percent.

Carriage doors open in a manual mode, by pressing a special button inside or outside the doors. The doors will only open when the train has come to a full stop at the platform. The door button turns green when it is ready to open. At other times the door is kept closed for safety purposes. Unlike suburban trains, Lastochka trains have no vestibules. This allows passengers to enter or leave the carriage faster.

MCC fares can be paid with ordinary city transit tickets (Unified travelcard, 90 Minute ticket or Troika Smartcard) The website offers more information on using the MCC including the rules for travel,  luggage and pets transportation.