Moscow, Russian Moskva, Moskva, capital of Russia (Russian Federation) and independent federal subject. With an area of 2,511 km 2, Moscow is the largest and with (2018) 12.3 million residents the most populous city in Russia and Europe. Together with the settlements in the Moscow area located on the city limits, it has around 15.5 million residents.
Moscow lies on either side of the Moskva River, which meanders through the city; on average 156 m above sea level. Administratively, Moscow is divided into 12 districts (okrugi) and 146 districts (rajony or posselenija). Today’s city limits run essentially along the motorway ring, which was completed in 1962, in some places the city area extends far beyond it, especially through the districts of Nowomoskowski and Troizki in the southwest, which were incorporated on July 1, 2012. The science city of Zelenograd, located in the north-west, 18 km from the motorway ring, in the Moscow region, is a separate Moscow city district.
Administrative and cultural institutions
Moscow is the seat of the Orthodox “Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia” (Moscow, Patriarchate), a Catholic Archbishop (Archbishopric “Our Lady of Moscow”) and the Chief Rabbi of Russia. As the capital, Moscow is an outstanding center of Russian science, education and culture. In addition to the Russian Academy of Sciences and the State Jewish Academy, the city is home to numerous other academies and over 100 scientific institutes, which are mainly concentrated in the center and in the south-west. Moscow has several universities (including Lomonosov University, founded in 1755) as well as many colleges and libraries (the largest is the Russian State Library), over 70 large museums and art galleries (including the Tretyakov Gallery, Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, State Historical Museum, Kolomenskoye Monument Protection Ensemble), Goethe Institute, over 90 theaters (including the Bolshoi Theater, Vakhtangov Theater, Moscow Art Theater, Theater on the Taganka), 18 large concert halls, one zoological and four botanical gardens, as well as the Ostankino radio and television center (with a 541 m high television tower), which was attached to the Exhibition Grounds for Achievements of the National Economy (VDNKh), as well as many memorials (including the Lenin mausoleum, the “Victory Park” complex for Commemoration of the victory in the Great Patriotic War) as well as numerous monuments, including the 50 m high monument to Peter I (Russian art). The best-known sports facility is the Luzhniki Olympic Stadium (the venue for the Summer Olympics in 1980 and the World Cup in 2018). The Moscow film studios enjoy an international reputation (especially “Mosfilm”; international film festival). In the urban area there are extensive parks (Gorki, Sokolniki Park), around Moscow as a recreational area there are extensive forest areas with many lakes (Moscow area).
After the sharp decline in industrial production during the 1990s, Moscow experienced strong industrial growth from 1999 onwards. In terms of industrial value added, the city ranks first in Russia. The industrial areas are mainly in the east, southeast, south and north of the city. The leading branches of industry are mechanical engineering, the automotive industry, the armaments industry, metalworking, building materials, food, electrotechnical-electronic and chemical industries. In the 1990s, Moscow established itself as the most important trade and financial center in Russia (more than 80% of Russian banking capital is concentrated here, around a third of Russian retail sales are generated here), and this is where major companies, especially those in the raw materials sector, and major banks have their own Headquarters. Since around 1995 there has been strong investment activity, parts of the city center have been transformed into a business city with new office complexes, passageways and shopping streets. Moscow is an internationally important trade fair location.
According to ezinereligion, Moscow is the most important transport hub in Russia. Eleven railway lines from all directions, which are connected by a railway ring, end in nine terminal stations. 14 trunk roads from all parts of the country cut the 109 km long motorway ring. Three river ports are connected by the Moscow Canal with the Volga and thus with five seas (White, Black, Caspian, Azov Sea and Baltic Sea). The airports Sheremetyevo, Domodedovo, Wnukowo and Ostafjewo serve international air traffic. The oldest Bykowo airport (closed in 2010) was only used for domestic air traffic. Inner-city traffic is served by the magnificent underground railway (Metro) built in 1935 with a route network of 379 km and 222 stations.