Nizhny Novgorod prepares to expand city metro 30 Sep 2020

Eugene Gerden for Tunneltalk

Nizhny Novgorod, one of the largest cities in Russia located on the Volga River, is considering resuming the expansion of the city metro system this year. A decision is the result of a recent meeting between the Governor of the Nizhny Novgorod region Gleb Nikitin, and Marat Khusnullin, the Deputy Prime Minister of Russia.

Fig 1. Plans for city metro development to 2030
Fig 1. Plans for city metro development to 2030

“We have plans to extend the existing metro network from the Sennaya Station to the existing aerial tramway and to build a large interchange hub with an access to the railway line. This would ensure the priority of electric transport and give a new impetus to the development of the transport system of the city,” said Governor Nikitin.

Currently the metro system consists of the two Avtozavodskaya and Sormovsko-Meshcherskaya lines for a total network of 22km and 15 stations (Fig 1). Of these, 14 stations are sub-surface with one deep mined station.

The expansion plan is part of the regional program for the integrated development of the transport infrastructure of the city to 2030. As part of the program, at least six new stations will begin in the period 2020-2021. Excavation of new running tunnels will include use of a 6m Herrenknecht TBM that was previously used on the Moscow Metro.

Plan is to use a 6m Herrenknecht TBM previously used on the Moscow Metro
Plan is to use a 6m Herrenknecht TBM previously used on the Moscow Metro

Most interviewed officials of the Nizhny Novgorod Government and local analysts in the field of metro construction and urban development believe a further expansion of the metro is an acute need, taking into account its current poor level of development and the fact that it only serves five of the existing eight districts of the city. At present the average daily passenger traffic is estimated at 115,000. The Nizhny Novgorod Metro is the third largest in Russia in number of stations after Moscow and St Petersburg.

Long-term, the authorities plan to build a third line, with an expected 15 stations. The new line will pass through outlying districts and one of the historical parts of the city. Building the third line will begin after extension of the existing lines.

Financial support for the expansion project is provided by VEB.RF Corporation, one of Russia’s largest financial institutions. The Main City Department for Construction and Repair of Bridges, Metro and Road Networks is the project client.

Governor Gleb Nikitin an initiator of the expansion plans
Governor Gleb Nikitin an initiator of the expansion plans

A search for a general contractor in the project continues, to replace the former contractor LLC SK US-620, which has been involved in a number of scandals regarding the failure of metro construction contracts.

Design of the Nizhny Novgorod Metro began in October 1973 when the designers of the Moscow Metrogiprotrans institute began development of its first phase. The beginning of a financial crisis in Russia in 1994-1995 resulted in the suspension of further expansion. The situation was further complicated by the large deficit in the City of Nizhny Novgorod budget and the unprofitability of the metro caused by low passenger traffic.


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