Finlyandsky Rail Terminal

Finlyandsky Rail Terminal

Finlyandsky Rail Terminal ( _ru. Финля́ндский вокза́л, "Finlyandsky vokzal"), also known as Finland Station, is a railway station in St. Petersburg, Russia handling transportation to northern destinations including Helsinki and Vyborg.

The station was built by Finnish State Railways as the eastern terminus of the Riihimäki-Saint Petersburg railroad. It was designed by Swedish architects and opened in 1870. The terminal formerly contained a special pavilion for Russian royalty.

The station was owned and operated by Finnish railways until early 1918, when the last train, carrying station personnel and equipment, plus some of the last Finns escaping revolutionary Russia left for Finland. Later, ownership of the station was exchanged for Russian property in Finland, including the Alexander Theatre in Helsinki.

The station is best remembered for the arrival of Vladimir Lenin by train on 3 April, 1917 to start the October Revolution. Lenin traveled from Finland disguised as a railway worker on engine #293. The steam locomotive was decades later donated by Finland to the Soviet Union, and is now installed as a permanent exhibit at the station. The event is also commemorated by the Soviet statue of Lenin dominating the square in front of the station.

During the Siege of Leningrad, the Finland Terminus was the only one in use. In the 1950s, the old building was demolished and replaced, [ a new structure] which was inaugurated in 1960. The turreted building is decorated with sculptures glorifying the October Revolution and incorporates a portico preserved from the original 1870 edifice.

Trains from Helsinki arrive to the terminal, except for a transit train to Moscow which runs through Ladoga Rail Terminal. The terminal is also one step in creating a high speed rail line between Saint Petersburg and Helsinki. The railway companies are upgrading track on that route to accommodate faster trains.

The main entrance to the metro station Ploshchad Lenina is in the main building of Finland Station.

See also

* "To the Finland Station", a book by Edmund Wilson.
* Karelian Trains
* Saint Petersburg-Hiitola railroad
* Riihimäki-Saint Petersburg railroad

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