InTramCities with Gordon Stewart

Kiev, Ukraine : 5th-7th October, 1985

Trams skirt the city centre , whose central point Kreshatik is the interchange point for the first two lines of Kiev's metro system. The route around the south of the city centre from near Lvovskaya to Dvorets Sports is followed, including the branch of route 8 to the University. Other areas illustrated include the Darnitsa area on the east bank of the River Dniepr, the Maritime Station area along the west bank, Ploschad Krasnaya, a major interchange point to the north of the city centre, and views along Frunze Ulitsa and in the modern housing complex at Obolon. In the western part of the city, views are included of express tram routes 1 and 3, a segregated, limited stop alignment opened in 1978.

Locations are named as they were in 1985. Many names have since been changed since Ukrainian independence from the USSR. Names shown may be a mixture of Russian and Ukrainian spellings.

Date Film No No Location View Dir Tram Notes
05/10/1985 850172 1 Ul. Sitchnevogo Povstannya In Out 5415 Approaching Ploschad Slavy
05/10/1985 850172 2 Ulitsa Suvorova In Out 5530 At Ploschad Slavy
05/10/1985 850172 3 Ul. Sitchnevogo Povstannya In Out 5148 Turning into Uitsa Suvorova at Ploschad Slavy
05/10/1985 850172 4 Bassenaya Ulitsa

05/10/1985 850172 5 Rohnidynska Ulitsa

6005 Turning into Esplanadna Ulitsa
05/10/1985 850172 6 Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli

5338 At Rohnidynska Ulitsa
05/10/1985 850172 7 Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli

05/10/1985 850172 8 Vladimirskaya Ulitsa Out

6011 Tram on route 10 at junction with Ulitsa Saksaganskogo
05/10/1985 850172 9 Ulitsa Saksaganskogo Out

At junction with L Tolstogo
06/10/1985 850181 1 Ulitsa L.Tolstogo Out
2074 2074 and 2076,. View south at Ulitsa Saksaganskogo
06/10/1985 850181 2 Ulitsa L Tolstogo In In 2073 View north over Ulitsa Saksaganskogo towards University terminus
06/10/1985 850181 3 Ulitsa Kominterna In Out 5189 Tram heading towards the railway station
06/10/1985 850181 4 Ploschad Peremogi

06/10/1985 850181 5 Ploschad Peremogi

06/10/1985 850181 6 Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa

6005 Three-car set on the rapid tramway routes 1 and 3 opened in 1977
06/10/1985 850181 7 Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa

5529 5529 is the third car of a set on the rapid tramway
06/10/1985 850181 8 Ploschad Peremogi

5828 In front of the main Circus building
06/10/1985 850181 9 Ulitsa Borovskogo Out
5842 At Ulitsa Dmytrivska
06/10/1985 850181 10 Ulitsa Borovskogo Out
5822 At Ulitsa Turhenievska
06/10/1985 850181 11 Ulitsa Borovskogo / Lvovskaya

5850 Tram entering Borovskogo from the terminus loop
06/10/1985 850181 13 Verkhnii Val Street S West

5766 Tram heading towards Ploschad Krasnaya - after Zhytnotorska St
06/10/1985 850181 14 Nizhnii Val Street
N East

5814 Between Mezhyhirska and Kostiantynivska streets
06/10/1985 850181 15 Nizhnii Val Street

5757 5757 is the second of a two car set near Ploschad Krasnaya
06/10/1985 850181 16 Ploschad Krasnaya

06/10/1985 850181 17 Shervonaya Ploschad

5927 Approaching Ploschad Krasnaya
06/10/1985 850181 18 Navereshnoye Shosse

5039 Running northwards on the bank of the Dneipr at Maritime Station
06/10/1985 850181 19 Navereshnoye Shosse

At Maritime Station / Potschtovaya Ploschad (Metro station)
06/10/1985 850181 20 Navereshnoye Shosse

5225 View towards Ploschad Krasnaya
06/10/1985 850181 21 Ulitsa Komsomolskaya

5953 In the Komsomolsky Massiv area of Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 22 Ulitsa Komsomolskaya

5059 At the junction with Letiya Oktyabrya Prospekt (Komsomolskaya metro)
06/10/1985 850181 23 Prospekt Yuri Gagarina

5319 Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 24 Prospekt Yuri Gagarina

5348 Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 25 Leningradskaya Ploschad

5260 Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 26 Leningradskaya Ploschad

5371 Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 27 Prospekt Vossojedineniya

5043 Bereznyani tram stop
06/10/1985 850181 28 Prospekt Vossojedineniya

General view of the reserved track alignment to Darnitsa
06/10/1985 850181 29 Prospekt Vossojedineniya

06/10/1985 850181 30 Prospekt Vossojedineniya

06/10/1985 850181 31 Merzyhyrska Street
5957 Approaching junction with Yaroslavska Street
06/10/1985 850181 32 Ul. Marschalla Malinovskogo Out

View of the modern suburb of Obolon
06/10/1985 850181 33 Ul. Marschalla Malinovskogo Out
06/10/1985 850181 34 Ulitsa Lajoscha Gavro In
5941 Approaching Obolon terminus
06/10/1985 850181 35 Ul. Marschalla Timoschenko Out

View in modern suburb of Obolon
06/10/1985 850181 36 Ul. Marschalla Timoschenko Out
5203 Obolon
07/10/1985 850191 1 Ul Zoyi Hayday Out
07/10/1985 850191 2 Ulitsa Syemena Skalarenko Out In 5294
07/10/1985 850191 3 Ulitsa Frunze Out In 5118
07/10/1985 850191 4 Oktiabrskaya

5740 On route 15 near Oktiabrskaya metro station
07/10/1985 850191 5 Oktiabrskaya

5738 Near Oktiabrskaya metro station
07/10/1985 850191 6 Oktiabrskaya

5705 Near Oktiabrskaya metro station
07/10/1985 850191 7 Pr. Kosmonauta Komarova

5590 On rapid tramway at Kozeleskaya Ulitsa
07/10/1985 850191 8 Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa

5453 On rapid tramway
07/10/1985 850191 9 University Out
2063 At terminus
07/10/1985 850191 10 University Out
2076 At terminus
07/10/1985 850191 11 Ulitsa L Tolstogo Out In 2056
07/10/1985 850191 12 Ulitsa L Tolstogo In In 2019
07/10/1985 850191 13 Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli

07/10/1985 850191 14 Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli

5199 5199+5200
07/10/1985 850191 15 Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli

07/10/1985 850191 16 Palaz Sportu

07/10/1985 850191 17 Ulitsa Schota Rustaveli


Route Network in 1985 showing location of photographs








Review of the photographs from a perspective of 2020 : 35 years later

In 1985 few would have predicted the fall of the Soviet Union and the independence of the new state of Ukraine, or at least in the space of six years. The newly-independent country rapidly fell into deep economic problems which impacted on the availability of finance for transport developments. Investment continued in the metro system which was regarded as the backbone of the city's transport system, but the future of the tramway immediately became uncertain. Despite the economic situation, the new freedoms available to citizens led to a growth in car ownership, with the city needing to and wishing to provide for this. Trams were removed from the streets around the southern edge of the city centre and the routes feeding into it and running across it were closed.  The line serving the west side of the city centre between Ploschad Peremogi and Lvovskaya was closed. The link to the crossing of the River Dneipr fell victim, as did the crossing itself and the tram network on the east bank centred on the suburb of Darnitsa became an isolated operation. Next to go was the line along the west bank of the river passing the Maritime Staion and Friendship of Nations Arch.

The whole future of tram operations in Kiev became a matter of debate, but the remainder of the system has survived and there has been new development in "high speed" lines on the east bank.

Ulitsa Bassenaya and Ploschad Slavy 

Trams were removed from this area as part of the closure of the route from Palaz Sportu to the Patona Bridge at Druzhby-Narodiv Boulevard in 1998.

Above :  Photo 850172-04 shows Tatra tram 5183 outbound on Bassenaya Ulitsa, now known as Baseina Ulitsa, at Ulitsa Esplanada. A tall glass faced skyscraper now fills the area to the left of the photo. The tram tracks have long gone and the area is now dominated by wide roads and private cars, although a wide green median strip has been maintained. Behind the tram beyond Ulitsa Esplanada, tracks were retained for a one-way terminating loop at Palaz Sportu for services from the west of the city until closure in 2001.

Above :  Photo 850172-01 shows tram 5415 approaching Ploschad Slavy from the city centre on Ulitsa Sitchnevogo Povstannya. In 2013 this street was renamed and is now called Ivana Mazepy Street. Ploschad Slavy was the name of the junction of several roads at the north-west point of the park containing the tomb of the unknown soldier and now various memorials including the museum ommemorating the victims of the Ukrainian famine of the 1930s. The "square" appears not to have a name since the roads leading from it have been renamed.
Above :  Photo 850172-03 shows tram 5148 turning out of Sitchnevogo Povstannya into Ulitsa Suvorova, which is now called Ulitsa Mikhaila Omelianovycha-Pavlenka  

Above :  Photo 850172-02 shows tram 5330 on Ulitsa Suvorova (now Mikhaila Omelianovycha-Pavlenka) heading out of town

City Centre : Palaz Sportu to Ploschad Peremogi and Ploschad Lvovskaya

Although the centre of the city including the main Khreshchatyk Square were tram-free, tracks ran around the south of the centre from the Sports Palace area at Bassenaya Ulitsa to Ploschad Peremogi via Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli,  Saksahanskogo Ulitsa, Ulitsa Kominterna and Zhilianska Ulitsa. Joining this line were routes from Moskovskaya Ploschad (joining Saksahanskogo Ulitsa from Vladimirskaya Ulitsa) and Voksal (from Ulitsa Kominterna). A service from Zaliznichiy Massiv to the University crossed at Ulita L Tolstogo and used older rolling stock than the Tatra trams used elsewhere on the network. A short new spur was built along Ulitsa Starovokzalna in 1988 with a loop terminus at the "Old Station". Although inconvenient for any passengers for the main station, it became the terminus for all remaining tram lines, including the two "high-speed" tram lines to the western suburbs (which formerly terminated at Ploschad Peremogi) when services to Palaz Sportu and the branches to Zalinichiy Massiv and Moskovskaya Ploschad were abandoned in 2001.  From Ploschad Peremogi the tram route around the west of the city centre followed Ulitsa Vorovskogo (now Ulitsa Bulvarno-Kudriavska) to a loop at Ploschad Lvovskaya. The track beyond Ulitsa Dimytrivska closed in the 1990s, but the tracks branching into Ulitsa Dimytrivska remain for services to Kontraktova Ploscha (formerly Ploschad Krasnaya) and Vidradnyi Prospekt (formerly Prospekt Chubara).

Above : Photo 850172-06 shows Tatra tram 5338 on Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli. The tram is travelling south eastwards from Bassenaya Ulitsa and is at the junction with Rohnidynska Ulitsa along which was a one-way single track to the parallel Esplanadna Ulitsa which formed a loop to allow trams from both west and east to turn 

Above : Photo 850191-17 shows Tatra tram 5371 on Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli at Rohnidynska Ulitsa showing in the foreground the track used by trams arriving from the west of the city 

Above : Photo 850191-14 shows Tatra tram 5199 turning out of Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli into Rohnidynska Ulitsa - a tram from the east of the city turning before heading back 

Above : Photo 850191-15 shows Tatra tram 6008 from the same viewpoint on Ulitsa Shotoa Rustaveli, but rather than turning, it is travelling ahead towards the west of the city

Above : Photo 850191-16 shows Tatra Tram 5377 on the double track part of Shota Rustaveli at the Palaz Sportu tram stop located just to the west of Rohidynska Ulitsa into which it will shortly turn.

Above : Photo 850191-13 shows Tatra Tram 519 on the double track part of Shota Rustaveli approaching the Palaz Sportu tram stop

Above : Photo 850172-05 shows Tatra tram 6005 on Rohnidynska Ulitsa and about to turn into Ulitsa Esplanadna 

Above : Photo 850172-07 shows Tatra tram 5527 running southbound on Ulitsa Shota Rustaveli, prior to turning right into Saksahanskogo Ulitsa 

Above : Photo 850172-08 shows Tatra tram 6011 on Vladimirskaya Ulitsa at Ulitsa Saksaganskogo. Tram on the now-closed route 10 could only turn left in the direction of Ploschad Peremogi rather than get to the centre of the city  

Above : Photo 850172-09 shows busy tram traffic on Ulitsa Saksaganskogo at the junction with Ulitsa L Tolstogo. The view is westwards with the Tatra tram on route 9 heading towards Palaz Sportu

Above : Photo 850181-03 shows Tatra tram 5189 on Ulitsa Kominterna (now Ulitsa Simona Petlyuri) on the short run to the station loop terminus, Vokzal.  

Above : Photo 850181-04 shows Tatra tram 5732 inbound at Ploschad Peremogi

Above : Photo 850181-05 shows Tatra tram 5852 inbound at Ploschad Peremogi

Above : Photo 850181-08 shows Tatra tram 5828 inbound at Ploschad Peremogi

Above : Photo 850181-09 shows Tatra tram 5842 inbound on Ulitsa Borovskogo (now Ulitsa Bulvarno-Kudriavska) at Ulitsa Dmytrivska. This track is now closed. The temporary-looking structures on the left have been replaced by a parking lot in front of a modern tower block. The tracks branching into Dmytrivska (not seen in this photo) remain in use for services to Kontraktova Ploscha (formerly Ploschad Krasnaya) and to Vidradnyi Prospekt (formerly Prospekt Chubara).   

Above : Photo 850181-10 shows Tatra tram 5822 inbound on Ulitsa Borovskogo (now Ulitsa Bulvarno-Kudriavska) at Ulitsa Turhenievska. This track is now closed. The building on the left has been replaced by a large residential tenement block 

Above : Photo 850181-11 shows Tatra tram 5850 inbound at Ulitsa Borovskogo (now Ulitsa Bulvarno-Kudriavska) at the turning loop at Ploschad Lvovskaya. This track is now closed 

Zaliznichiy Massif to the University

In 1985 this line was operated as a separate, relatively short, line crossing the main east-west line along Saksahanskogo Ulitsa at Ulitsa L Tolstogo, distinguished from the rest of the tramway by the use of older rolling stock, designated KTV-57 and dating from the early 1960s, which were in service until 1988. Due to the lack of a turning loop at the University, these double-ended trams were essential. Their withdrawal led to the closure of that portion of the line north of Saksahanskogo Ulitsa and the operation of the line to Zaliznichiy Massif with Tatra cars. This section of the line was finally closed in 2001 along with the remaining sections of tramway across the southern side of the city centre.  

Above : Photo 850181-01 shows tram 2074 heading south on Ulitsa L Tolstogo from the junction with Saksahanskogo Ulitsa whilst the tram on the left loads to take passengers towards the University area

Above : Photo 850181-02 shows tram 2073 on Ulitsa L Tolstoy and waiting to cross Saksahanskogo Ulitsa, northbound en route to the University area 

Above : Photo 850191-12 shows tram 2019 on Ulitsa L Tolstoy climbing towards the University terminus

Above : Photo 850191-11 shows tram 2056 on Ulitsa L Tolstoy seen from the University terminus

Above : Photo 850191-10 shows tram 2076 on Ulitsa L Tolstoy at the University terminus

Above : Photo 850191-09 shows tram 2063 on Ulitsa L Tolstoy at the University terminus

High-Speed Tram Route to Ulitsa Bolshaya Okruzhnaya (now Kiltseva Doroha) and Ulitsa Semi Sosninych (Mykhailivska Borshchahivka)

A high-speed tram route to the western suburbs was opened in 1978 featuring a highly-segregated track with limited stops, mostly accessible only by subway or overbridge and operated by three coupled Tatra T3 trams in frequencies of up to one minute. The line was substantially modernised and upgraded in advance of Kiev hosting football matches of UEFA's 2012 Euro championship.

Above : Photo 850191-08 shows tram 5453 inbound at Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa

Above : Photo 850181-06 shows tram 6005 inbound on the high-speed alignment at Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa

Above : Photo 850181-06 shows the rear of the three-car train at Borstschagovskaya Ulitsa and heading towards the line's terminus near Ploschad Peremogi

Above : Photo 850181-07 shows a three-car set led by 5590 outbound at Prospekt Kosmonauta Komarova (now Valtslava Havela Station). The traditional tram line to Prospekt Chubara crosses above on what is now Vatslav Havel Boulevard
Oktiabrskaya tram stop - now Beresteiska Station tram stop

Above : Photo 850191-05 shows tram 5738 heading oubound from Oktobrskaya tram stop on what is now called Ulitsa Dehtiarivska on a bridge crossing Prospekt Peremogi

Above : Photo 850191-04 shows tram 5740

Above : Photo 850191-06 shows tram 5705 approching Oktbrskaya 

Ploschad Krasnaya (now Kontraktova Ploscha) area and the Maritime Station

The Ploschad Krasnaya area was in 1985 a major meeting point and also terminus for a number of tram lines and featured a number of single track sections along parallel roads which also acted as turning loops. Now named Kontraktova Ploschad there remains significant, if reduced tram activity and trams now terminate on Spaska street with those to and around Kontraktova Ploscha itself and onwards to the River Dneipr and the Maritime Station via Illinska, Bratska and Ihorivska streets closed.  

Above : Photo 850181-13 shows Tatra tram 5766 heading towards the Ploschad Krasnaya area along Verkhnii Val, having just passed Zyhtnotorska street. Trams run either side of a green median strip with trees and a pedestrian footpath. The carriageway on the other side of the strip runs on Nyzhnii Val street 

Above : Photo 850181-14 shows 5814 heading south-west along the tram only median strip between Nyzhnii Val street (left) and Verkhnii Val street, approaching the junction with Kostiantynivska street. The motor car crossing behind the tram is on Mezhihirska street. 

Above : Photo 850181-15 shows 5757 on the left running as a trailer in a two-car set

Above : Photo 850181-16 shows 5112 on the left on Spaska street at the entrance to the Ploschad Krasnaya / Kontraktova ploscha metro station

Above : Photo 850181-17 shows 5927 approaching Ploscad Krasnaya from Illinska street having come from the Martime Station. This track is now closed.

Maritime Station / Navereshnoye Shosse

Above : Photo 850181-18 shows 5039 northbound on Navereshnoye Shosse alongside the River Dneipr. This scene has changed considerably. Trams have been removed and the upgraded highway dives into a short shallow cutting underneath Postova Ploscha which has been rebuilt as a wide open pedestrial only area

Above : Photo 850181-19 is a view south from a pedestrial overbridge at Poshtova Square 

Above : Photo 850181-20 is a view north of tram 5225 from the bridge at Poshtova Square. The highway is now in a covered cutting and the area pedestrianised

Northern Kiev

From the intersection of routes at the Ploschad Krasnaya / Podil area of Kiev, trams run northwards along Kyrylivska Street (formerly Ulitsa Frunze). Cutting across to where Semena Skylerenka Street becomes Avtozavodka Street, there is a turning loop and branch into Dobrynynska Street leading to the high-rise reseidential development of Obolon where there is afurther branching of routes to serve the northern and southern parts of the area. The route along Autozavodka Street leads directly to the northern edge of the built up area of the city and then through woodland to reach and run through Pushcha-Vodytsya at the edge of the Kiev city administrative area. This route is almost entirely on reserved track along major roads. Most of the tracks to and in Obolon are also on reserved track in a typical "Soviet" style residential area.

Above : Photo 850181-31. Tram 5957 neads northwards along Merzyhyrska Street approaching the junction with Yaroslavska Street. At this point, the tram is still on one of the one-way streets which form the bulk of the network in the Podil area.

Above : Photo 850191-03. Tram 5118 heads towards the city centre on Ulitsa Frunze (now Kyrylivska Ulitsa).

Above : Photo 850191-02. Tram 5294 has arrived at Ulitsa Syemena Skalerenko (now Semena Skylerenka) from Obolon. 

Above : Photo 850181-32. Ulitsa Marschalla Malinovskogo. View outwards with tram heading towards Obolonska Ploscha. The pond appears to have been filled in and the area filled with small retail units.
Above : Photo 850181-33. Tram 5266 heading inwards on Ulitsa Marschalla Malinovskogo.

Above : Photo 850181-34. Tram 5941 heading otwards on Ulitsa Lajoscha Gavro (now Ulitsa Yordanska) at Obolonska Ploscha, shortly before arriving at Obolon terminus,

Above : Photo 850181-35. The tram is running inbound along Ulitsa Marshalla Timoschenko at the tram stop of the same name

Above : Photo 850181-36. Tram 5203 inbound on Ulitsa Marshalla Timoschenko a the roundabout after leaving Zoyi Hayday street. A large residential block has since been built in front of the flats on the right of the picture with a stylish design far removed from the utilitarian style of the surrounding blocks.

Above : Photo 850191-01. Tram 5126 heading towards the centre of the city on Zoyi Hayday Street

Eastern Kiev  (Darnitsa Area)
An extensive tram network exists on the east bank of the Dneipr River with the suburb of Darnitsa being the central point. Although the area was served by the expanding metro, the link between the local tram lines and the city centre was severed somewhat abruptly by mayoral decree in the summer of 2004 when services across the Patona Bridge were closed. Tracks were also removed from Leningradskaya Ploschad (now Darnitsa Ploscha) and some re-routing took place in the centre of Darnitsa. The rest of the network has survived and added to by the construction of a high speed line in the north of the area 

Above : Photo 850181-29. Tram 5953 heads towards Darnitsa on Prospekt Vossojedeniya which has been rebuilt as a multi-lane highway without tram tracks and renamed Prospekt Sobornosti

Above : Photo 850181-30. Tram 5933 and a two-car set with 5282 as trailer cross on Prospekt Vossojedeniya

Above : Photo 850181-27. Tram 5043 inbound on Prospekt Vossojedeniya at the Berezniaky tram stop  

Above : Photo 850181-28. On Prospekt Vossojedeniya inbound on Prospekt Vossojedeniya at the Berezniaky tram stop. The tram reservation has given way to a wider highway and a number of skyscrapers have been built in the distance in the centre of the view  

Above : Photo 850181-25. Tram 5260 inbound at Leningradskaya Ploschad (now Darnitskaya Ploscha) 

Above : Photo 850181-26. Tram 5371 inbound at Leningradskaya Ploschad (now Darnitskaya Ploscha)

Above : Photo 850181-24. Tram 5348 on Ulitsa Yuri Gagarina. This road has been transformed into a multi-lane highway and trams removed to a private right of way slightly to the east

Above : Photo 850181-23 shows tram 5319 heading towards Leningradskaya Ploschad close to the junction with Ulitsa Hnata Khotkevycha, out of which the tram in the distance in the photo is turning

Above : Photo 850181-22 shows tram 5059 heading inwards on Komsomolskaya Ulits (now Bratyslavska Ulitsa) at the junction with Ulitsa Andriya Malyshka

Above : Photo 850181-21 shows tram 5953 on Ulitsa Komsomolskaya

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