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Posted by Vasilisa on 20 Oct 2009

Cog railway (funicular) on Vladimirskaya hill is not only Kiev pecularity, but also the most swift and convenient way to get from Podol to the Upper city, to Mikhailovskaya square.

Funicular history 

funicularIdea of mechanical cog railway on the Dnieper hills was discussed by Kyiv engineers many times. For the first time it was suggested in 1883 by Artur Abragamson. The idea was hinted by his education in Switzerland where he saw ski lifts. Although implementation was delayed till 1902 when city council ordered under the management of Abragamson engineer Nikolay Pyatnitskiy to design funicular lifting gear and architect Alexander Baryshnikov station pavilions. During the construction was utilized newly introduced material ferroconcrete, while gear and carriages were manufactured in Swithzerland.

Opening of «Mikhailov lift», as it was called, occurred on May 7, 1905. Within first day people simply attacked funicular. According to special counters installed only during May 8, 1905 22 thousand people used funicular services.

Route length was 200 meters. Each of two carriages was able to take 65 passengers and had two open stages and three closed compartments with seats. Each run took 3 minutes. Funicular was reconstructed 3 times. At the end of 20-th in the past centure the route was prolonged from Mikhailovskaya square through Borichev lane further to Post square by 38 meters. In 30 years were replaced wore railways, sleepers and carriages. In 1984 — was reconstructed down pavilion.

Various Facts 

The funicular uses the two rail and passing-loop system. The two cars are designated with the Cyrillic letters Λ and П which stand for left and right. The funicular was renovated three times: in 1928, 1958, and 1984.

Wheel width: 100 cm. Total track length: 238 meters. The total gradient of the slope on which the funicular runs on is 36 %. The cable cars are powered by an electric motor which is located inside the upper station.

The travel time between the stations is approximately 3 minutes. The route is from the Mykhailivska Square in the Uptown to the Poshtova Square in the Podil. The ticket price is the much like the other city-owned public transportation methods, 50 kopecks. The funicular provides daily service to 10,000-15,000 passengers, and annually to 2.8 million passengers.

The funicular was closed on September 25, 2006 for restoration, which is usually conducted every year. The total cost of the restoration was expected to be 455,400 hryvnias (about 90,500 US dollars).

Mykhaylo Brodskyy, a Ukrainian politician, claims that when he was young, he participated in the construction of the funicular.


address: lower station — Pochtovaya square, upper station — Mikhaylovskaya square


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