Metro systems in Helsinki and Saint Petersburg

Helsinki Saint Petersburg
Date of opening 3 Aug 1982 15 Nov 1955
Network length 21 km 113.5 km
Stations 17 67
Lines 1 5
Avg. station distance 1,313 m 1,831 m
Avg. line length 21.00 22.70 km
Daily ridership 170,000 2.3 million
Daily ridership per km 8,090 19,000
Interesting info Western extension from Ruoholahti to Matinkylä, completely underground, 13.9 km, 8 stations, its operation will begin in the autumn of 2016.

HKL has dedicated webpages from environmental impact of public transportation and Western metro.

Various art exhibitions regularly organized in Helsinki metro stations.

Helsingin metro logo.svg

Stations: Ruoholahti, Kamppi, Rautatientori, Helsingin yliopisto, Hakaniemi, Sörnäinen, Kalasatama, Kulosaari, Herttoniemi, Siilitie, Itäkeskus

Itäkeskus–Mellunmäki: Myllypuro, Kontula, Mellunmäki,

Itäkeskus–Vuosaari: Puotila, Rastila, Vuosaari

Länsimetro: Lauttasaari, Koivusaari, Keilaniemi, Aalto-yliopisto, Tapiola, Urheilupuisto, Niittykumpu, Matinkylä (planned: Finnoo, Kaitaa, Soukka, Espoonlahti, Kivenlahti)

The construction of the Saint Petersburg underground train system began as partly a military project of shelter system for population.[1]

There are themed metro stations on the first metro stretch between Avtovo and Ploshchad Vosstaniya, which opened in 1955 (Red line).

The metro is the world’s deepest with an average station being 60 meters below ground. Some stations double as bomb shelters.

Spb metro logo.svg

Table 1. Helsinki and Saint Petersburg metro in numbers. Sourses: St.Petersburg metro http://www.metro.spb.ru/information.html , Metrobits.org http://mic-ro.com/metro/metrocity.html?city=Saint+Petersburg, HSL, Metro, Track and depot http://www.hel.fi/www/hkl/en/by-metro/track-and-depot/


St Petersburg Metro transporting everyday over 2 million passengers is one of the busiest metro systems in Europe. It has 67 stations, 7 lines. The oldest stations build in the 1940-50s have rich decorations and distinct architecture styles, while architecture of the new stations is simplistic. V. A. Garyugin, director of state company “St. Petersburg Metropoliten” in his presentation of the metro writes: ”The Metro connects the historic city centre to the once-forgotten city outskirts. The blue Metro trains have become a symbol of new adult life for many people. Three generations of St. Petersburg residents have arranged meetings at Metro stations marked with a blue letter “M”.” [2]

Helsinki Metro was opened in 1982, it connects central districts with eastern suburbs. A new line called West metro will open in 2016.

Rules and limitations

Saint Petersburg metro has a very long list of usage rules. For instance, article 9.17. says that it is prohibited to shoot films or videos as well as use flash photography unless specifically authorized by the authorities.

 St. Petersburg Metro Passenger Behavior Guidelines

9. It is strictly forbidden for anybody on the territory of the Metro to:

9.23. Use the train driver communication link for no purpose.

9.24. Use rollerblades, roller skates, skateboards, skis or any other such equipment anywhere on the territory of the Metro.

9.25. Ride motorcycles, bicycles, scooters or any other similar vehicles.

9.26. Listen to music through speakers, use sound amplifiers or play music instruments.

Table2: St. Petersburg Metro Passenger Behavior Guidelines. Source: St. Petersburg Metro. Passenger Behavior Guidelines. http://www.metro.spb.ru/en/rulez.html visited 22.01.2016

St. Petersburg city police has a division working specifically for the metro system.

Helsinki Metro is covered by general HKL (Helsinki City Transport )regulations. Instructions for metro passengers are concise and presented on HKL website as a list of questions and answers.

HKL regulations specify that ” More demanding filming processes (such as movies, TV series, advertisements and different kinds of videos) on trams, metro trains, metro stations or ferries must always be agreed in advance with HKL Helsinki City Transport, because in most cases HKL’s facilities and staff resources are needed.” HKL also issues performance licenses for Kamppi, Rautatientori, Kaisaniemi, Hakaniemi, Sörnäinen, Herttoniemi, Itäkeskus and Vuosaari metro stations. Performance licenses may be granted for one hour or two hours at a time.[3] Also ” HKL can also participate in the event production as a partner and this way allow the premises to be used as a venue. In general, HKL does not permit the use of any premises managed by it for purposes of marketing or promoting any private company, commercial product or ideological/religious or political view”. [4]


Connecting high contrast city districts

Example 1.  St. Petersburg metro line 1 (red) connects heavily industrialized Kirovsky District on the south-west (metro stations Narvskaya, Kirovski zavod) with city center and Kalininskiy District on the north where many universities and research institutes are located (stations Grazhdanski prospect, Akademicehskaya).[5]

Example 2. In Helsinki metro line connects a western and central part of the city (Ruoholahti) with eastern districts of Helsinki (Vuosari, Myllypuro, Kontula, Mellunmäki)


[1] Garyugin , V. A. St. Petersburg Metro SUE. http://www.metro.spb.ru/en/metro.html

[2] Garyugin , V. A. St. Petersburg Metro SUE. http://www.metro.spb.ru/en/metro.html

[3] HKL Filming in HKL premises and vehicles. http://www.hel.fi/www/hkl/en/feedback-and-contact-information/filming-in-hkl-premises-and-vehicles/

[4] HKL Filming in HKL premises and vehicles. http://www.hel.fi/www/hkl/en/feedback-and-contact-information/filming-in-hkl-premises-and-vehicles/

[5] Rating of St- Petersburg districts by the life quality (in Russian). Ekspert http://expert.ru/ratings/rejting-rajonov-sankt-peterurga-po-kachestvu-zhizni/


Helsinki metro

Схема линий Петербургского метрополитена
Схема линий Петербургского метрополитена