Why does the tram run underground in Volgograd?

Kirill Braga/Sputnik
In Volgograd, passengers get to use a unique transport, dubbed the ‘metrotram’.

It is a kind of a hybrid of a subway train and a tram. In other words, it looks like an ordinary tram, but some stations are located underground.

Metrotram in 1987.

The Volgograd high-speed tram has been operating since 1984. The city was growing rapidly and needed to develop public transportation. In Soviet times, only million-plus populated cities were justified having a subway system, but the city of Volgograd had less population back then.

So, it was decided to run a high-speed tram that would also go underground. In the future, the stations could be converted into subway stations by raising the height of the platform.

Today, the Volgograd ‘metrotram’ is part of the city's general tram system. In total, there are 22 stations on its routes, of which five are underground; there is also one covered overpass. There are a total of two routes on which both old and new trams operate. 

The ‘metrotram’ is isolated from other traffic both subway and above ground, making it the fastest mode of transportation in the city. 

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