The International Steam Pages

A Moscow Railway Miscellany, Russia, Part 2

Harvey Smith was based in and around Moscow off and on from 1997 to 2014 and has now moved to St. Petersburg. Apart from this report he has also posted information on other attractions in Moscow and the rest of Russia, there are links at the bottom of the page.

This is a variety of items sent to me by Harvey, he would like to acknowledge the help given to him by Tim Littler of GW Travel.

If you are spending some time in the country, you may wish to contact:

Likhobory Depot and Station 

In recent years there have been allot great news in railway preservation in Russia. Sadly the story of Likhobory Depot in in the north west corner of the Moscow ring railway line is not one of them.

It is now only worth going there if you want to see the monument to 100 years of the Moscow Ring Railway. The monument is not easily accessible. The depot is unusually well fenced. So you have to walk in along the ring railway. There is a nice old station building and 19th century water tower in the design of a castle tower now marooned in an adjacent industrial estate. For those who like diesel locomotives there is a large collection of diesel locomotives. Some old types of diesel locomotives are stored at the depot with the doors and windows boarded over.

I first visited Likhobory Depot on of 4th August 2012. I found 9P-178. She was by far the best preserved 9P in Moscow. She was much better preserved that the 9P-17347 in Richski station museum.


However, 9P 178 was moved to the MegaGrinn shopping centre in Orel in September 2012 about a month after I saw her. Sadly this beauty is now this monstrosity stripped of her side tanks with handrails, a cow catcher and fake buffers added. I presume she is painted unauthentic green to look like miniature Soviet passenger locomotive. 

When I visited Likhobory Depot on 15th August 2014 I found EM-728-65 plinthed 20 metres from where 9P-178 used to reside. She stands near the turntable, which is clearly visible on Google maps. I had previously seen EM-728-65 at Podmoskovnaya depot on 9 April. Back then I assumed that she would be restored. She had previously been part of a bar at a private dacha outside St.Petersburg. She is a poor representation of the class. Her cab, boiler cladding, steam dome cover, and sand dome cover are poor quality replacements. The cab even lacks windows. The fittings that you would usually expect to be missing are missing, including the whistle. But this locomotive also lacks a significant amount of its valve gear. To cap it all she is painted an unauthentic dark green, which was sported neither by freight nor by passenger locomotives in the Soviet Union. . So do not bother seeing her, unless you happen to be nearby. She is not worth the journey.


A set of driving wheels off a class L or Lv were present in the depot. Curiously, such a set of wheels had previously been seen Kievski depot but was not longer at Kievski depot when I visited on 17th August 2014. So perhaps the mystery set of wheels came from Kievski and the scrapped LV-0214. Near the wheels was crane 1918.

The following was posted after Harvey's visit in August 2012.

Likhobory Station building is used as offices and lies to the south of a large container depot. You can easily see the memorial from Google Earth. It is to the west of the station building. The memorial commemorates 100 years of the Moscow ring railway line. Note a great idea which London could do with. The ring railway line was completed in August 1908 as was the small Likhobory station and neighbouring depot. The monument has a bronze model of a diesel locomotive and another of Russian class O locomotive. To be honest I found the memorial a very sad sight. Why the Russians could not merely plinth a Class E locomotive from their reserves or 9P-140 from Serp and Molot factory on this spot, and erect a simpler memorial, I do not understand. The whole granite and bronze affair must have cost a fortune. I like the real thing and not a bronze copy. I photographed the monument and then took some interest in the station. I like Imperial Russian architecture in all its quirkiness and individuality. Then 2 ladies appeared from the station building and told me that I could not photograph anything and they politely ushered me through the side gate and locked me out. The point of such a grand monument in a place where ordinary citizens cannot go is beyond my understanding. Why photographing a historic railway station and a grand monument breaches some Russian railway regulation is also completely beyond me. So I suggest you go at the weekend and do not get carried away photographing the station. Stop at the monument and go back the way you came.

I then started to go back in the direction I came. I crossed the tracks at a large road bridge and photographed the water tower behind the container depot. It is built like a castle tower. I then went back to the depot and found the model of the Russian steam locomotive class Ъх outside the depot offices. The model is part of a monument that commemorates the opening of the depot on 2 August 1908. It faces the street. The Russian steam locomotive class Ъх is extinct and they were used on the Moscow ring railway line. They were also the only 2-8-2 the Russians built. I then walked further down the same street and back into the depot through an open gate. From there I took the same route to the metro the way I had come.

Central Armed Forces Museum

This was formerly known as 'The Museum of the Soviet Armed Forces':

Armoured OV-5067 is here. 

Update from Parker Wilson (20th September 2015)

The nearest metro station to the museum is now Dostoyevskaya, which opened in 2010. The museum is less than a block from the metro exit.

Harvey tells me that the museum can be reached from Prospect Mira Station on the metro,  Ploshad Surorova station is also nearby. It also near and walkable from Rizhski Railway Museum at Rizhskaya.


SU215.80 at the Sacco & Vanzetti Beer Factory, Moscow tenderless and may have an incorrect chimney. It did service as a stationary boiler in a factory. But it is worth a visit. As of June 2010 the Moscow Railway Museum does not possess an Su locomotive. It is also far more easy to find than you might imagine. The old factory is up for redevelopment and has been sold to an American company. Lets hope the locomotive survives.

Just go to the old Ukraina Hotel now the Radisson Royal Hotel. It is opposite the White House on the other side of the Moscow River, and 20 minutes walk from Kievskaya Railway and Metro Station. Face the main facade and turn right and walk down to the river, turn left at the river and walk towards the Moscow City Business area on the other side of the river. The latter is easily recognisable for its skyscrapers.

You will soon come to a Rosneft petrol station on the bank of the river. Opposite it is a modern office building with a grey granite base a light yellow centre section and a glass top all under a curved roof. There is also a 17th Century English folly glued to the top. I suppose the architect liked it. The Sacco Vanzetti Pencil Factory was behind the fence diagonally across from the petrol station and on the other side of a small road from the modern office building. As of June 2010 the factory site is used for a mixture of small businesses.

I found the security guards at the gate facing the river unhelpful. You might get in a car by saying you need to get your car washed at the car wash inside the gate.

It is unnecessary to use the entrance gate. Proceed straight up the small suburban road that runs between the factory site behind a white fence and the light yellow modern office building. Go up the hill away from the river. The road soon becomes just a small road serving some apartments. Towards the end there is the original and very fine brick entrance gate on the right. The road turns sharply left at this point. SU215 is plinthed behind the gate.

There is a second alternative route. Start from the Ukraina Hotel / Radisson Royal Hotel face the main facade and go left down the wide main road. Ignore the first road serving an apartment block facing the Hotel across a green space. Walk only one block and turn first right into a yard. Walk across the yard past the childrenís playground and you will see the brick gates there.

I got the shots through one of the gates and from on top of the gates with the help of some friendly building workers who removed the screen on one of the gates.

Kubinka Tank Museum

Near Moscow is the Kubinka Tank Museum. When I was there in summer 1998, you had to give your passport number 2 weeks in advance. It is the old Soviet proving grounds. The collection of tanks is by far the best in the world. They even have a British Chieftain tank!!!! Among all these tanks is a World War II armoured railway vehicle.


Rob Dickinson