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Tomsk ( ) is a city on the Tom Rivermarker in the southwest of Siberian Federal District, Russiamarker, the administrative centre of Tomsk Oblast. One of the oldest towns in Siberia, Tomsk celebrated its 400th anniversary in 2004. Population: 501,784 (2009 est.); It is served by Bogashevo Airportmarker.

Geography

Tomsk is divided into four city districts: Kirovsky, Leninsky, Oktyabrsky, and Sovetsky. The historical areas of Tomsk include: Voskresenskaya Gora (Resurrection Hill), the Swamp, Belozerye, Greater and Lesser Yelany, Zaistochye (Tatar settlement), the Lakeside, Kashtak, Kirpichi, and Mukhin Mound .

In 2005, the city annexed the settlements of Eushta, Dzerzhinsky, Timiryazevskoye, Zonalny, Loskutovo, Svetly, Kirgizka, and Kopylovo.

Tomsk is located about twenty kilometres south-east of the town of Severskmarker, a major centre of plutonium production and reprocessing and uranium enrichment.

Climate

Tomsk has a continental climate. The annual average temperature is . Winters are severe and lengthy, and the lowest recorded temperature was in January 1996. However, the average temperature in January is between and . The average temperature in July is . The total yearly rainfall is 435 mm. In 2006 Tomsk experienced what might have been its first recorded hurricane-force winds which toppled trees and damaged houses.

History

In 1604, Tomsk was established under a decree from Tsar Boris Godunov. The tsar sent 200 Cossacks under the command of Vasiliy Tyrkov and Gavriil Pisemsky to construct a fortress on the bank of the Tom Rivermarker overlooking what would become the city of Tomsk. A local tribal leader, Toyan, accepted Russian control and ceded the land for the fortress to the Tsar.

In 1804, the government selected Tomsk to become the center for a new governorate which would include the modern cities of Novosibirskmarker, Kemerovomarker, Krasnoyarskmarker and eastern Kazakhstanmarker. The new status brought development and the city grew quickly.

The discovery of gold in 1830 brought further development to Tomsk in the 19th century. However, when the Trans-Siberian Railroad bypassed the city in favor of the village of Novonikolayevka (now Novosibirskmarker), development began to move south to connect with the railroad. In time, Novosibirsk would surpass Tomsk in importance.

In the mid-19th century, one-fifth of the city’s residents were exiles. However, within a few years, the city would be reinvented as the educational center of Siberia with the establishment of Tomsk State Universitymarker and Tomsk Polytechnic Universitymarker. By World War II, every 12th resident of the city was a student, giving rise to the city's informal name - Siberian Athensmarker.

After the Russian Revolution the city was a notable centre of the White movement, led by Anatoly Pepelyayev and Maria Bochkareva, among others. After the town’s capture by the Red Army, Tomsk was incorporated into the West Siberia region and later into the Novosibirsk Region.

As in many Siberian cities, Tomsk became the new home for many factories relocated out of the War Zone at the beginning of the Second World War. The resulting growth of the city led the Soviet government to establish a new Oblast centered on Tomsk.

File:Tomsk Privokzalnaya square 1.jpg|Tomsk Central Railway Terminal.File:TSU-2004-19924.jpg|The Main Building of Tomsk State Universitymarker.File:Tomsk-university-cliniques.jpg|Tomsk University clinic in the early 1900s.File:Trinity tomsk.jpg|The Trinity Cathedral,designed by Konstantin Thon, built as a replica of Moscow's Christ the Saviour Cathedralmarker, destroyed in the 1930s.File:TomskCoin.jpg|2004 silver three-rouble coin commemorating the city.File:Tomsk 1898.jpg|City map, circa 1898.

Politics



Tomsk is governed by a mayor and a 33-member city Duma. The current mayor is Alexander Sergeyevich Makarov (who was arrested in 2006) and the current Duma chairman is Nikolay Nikolaychuk, both are members of The United Russia Party. Mayor Makarov is currently suspended from his post pending the outcome of criminal proceedings against him. in russian Of the 33 members, 16 are elected from the eight double mandate districts while 17 are chosen from party lists.

In the October 2005 local elections, United Russia was expected to cruise to a solid victory; however, the Pensioners Party put up a strong showing. The final count was:

Proportional representation


Double mandates
  • 10 seats—No party affiliation
  • 4 seats—United Russia
  • 1 seat—Pensioners Party
  • 1 seat—Liberal Democratic Party of Russia


Education

Tomsk has a number of prominent institutions of higher education, including:

The large number of educational institutions in the city have contributed to making Tomsk a major centre for Russia's IT industry. Tomsk was one of the first cities in Russia to possess Internet service, which became available in the early 1990s due to grants received by the universities and scientific cooperation.

Culture

Tomsk Museum for Regional Studies and the Organ Hall of the Philarmony


Tomsk has many local cultural institutions including several dramatic theaters as well as a children’s theater and a puppet theater. Major concert venues in the city include the Conservatory Concert hall and the Tomsk Palace of Sport. The city also has cultural centers dedicated to Germanmarker, Polishmarker and Tatar languages and culture.

One of the city's prominent theaters was destroyed in an act of terrorism in 1905. The Korolevskii Theater (built in 1884–85) was being used by a group of communist revolutionaries when the theater was attacked and set on fire by members of the Black Hundred, a hard-line nationalist organization. Those who escaped the flames were gunned down by Black-Hundred members waiting outside the theatre. Estimates put the number of casualties at between 200 and 1000.

There are a number of museums in Tomsk devoted to various subjects, most notably art, local history and wood carving. There is also a 'Museum of Oppression' housed in a former KGB dungeon. Tomsk State University has a number of small museums with exhibits on archaeology, paleontology, zoology as well as a herbarium and botanical garden

As in many other cities in the former Soviet Unionmarker, the revolutionary government destroyed a number of old churches in the city including two that had existed since the 17th century. However, Tomsk managed to retain some of its churches by transforming them into machine shops, warehouses, archives, and even residential buildings. Since the end of the communist era some of the churches have been renovated and returned to their congregations.

Tomsk is well-known for its intricate "gingerbread" decoration of its traditional wooden houses. However, the number of old homes in this style is decreasing due to fire, as the structures have little to no fire protection, and redevelopment.

Trud Stadiummarker, in central Tomsk hosts FC Tom’, the city’s professional soccer club. The team’s 2004 promotion to the Russian Premier League gave local fans a chance to see some of the nation's best teams play at their local stadium.

Tomsk has many local media outlets including the TV2 television station, the radio stations Radio Siberia and Echo of Moscow in Tomsk along with several newspapers (Tomskii Vestnik, Tomskaya Nedelya, Krasnoye Znamya and Vechernii Tomsk).

In April 2006 Tomsk received international media attention as the venue of a major summit on economic cooperation, held in the city between Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Notable Residents





Economics

Energy Generation

Tomsk has the oldest electrical grid in Siberiamarker. There are three powerstations in the city:
  1. TEC-1 (launched on January 1, 1896)
  2. GRES-2 (launched on May 28, 1945)
  3. TEC-3 (launched on October 29, 1988)


Tomsk consumes more electric energy than it produces. The bulk of the city's electric and thermal energy is produced by the GRES-2 (281 MWt) and TEC-3 (140 MWt) powerplants, belonging to Tomskenergo Inc. Tomsk supplements its energy needs with electricity generated at Severskmarker.

Transportation

Road network:
  • northern branch of the M 53 federal road;
  • road R 398 to Kolpashevomarker;
  • road R 400 to Mariinskmarker;
  • Northern latitude highway PermmarkerSurgutmarker—Tomsk (under construction).


There is a commercial and passenger port on the Tom Rivermarker.

The city is served by Bogashevo Airportmarker.

Railways

Tomsk is a small railway center that is situated on the Taygamarker (Тайга́)—Bely Yar line (Tomsk branch) of the Trans-Siberian Railway

The main line of the Trans-Siberian railway, built in 1896, passes 50 km south of Tomsk and bypasses Tomsk. Access from Tomsk to the Trans-Siberian railway is available via the town of Taygamarker. A regional rail line links Tomsk with Tayga.

The Tomsk Railway existed as an independent entity until 1961. At the present time, the Tomsk line belongs to the West-Siberian Railway, branch of Russian Railways Corp.. Trains link Tomsk to Anapamarker, Asinomarker, Barnaulmarker, Bely Yar, Moscowmarker, Novokuznetskmarker, Novosibirskmarker, Sochimarker and Taygamarker.

City transport

The main part of inner-city and suburban transportation is provided by marshrutka collective taxis, over 1000 marchrutkas, mainly PAZ) minibuses, serve about 40 bus routes.

Additionally, the city has 11 proper bus routes, 8 trolleybus lines (built in 1967) and five tram lines (constructed in 1949). Private taxis are also readily available.

Air Transport

Tomsk Bogashevo Airport is served by the following airlines:

The airport is also served by charter flights operated by UTair and Alrosa Mirny Air Enterprise

International relations

Twin towns — Sister cities

Tomsk is twinned with:

References

  1. General Information about Tomsk, Kommersant Daily


External links




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