Moscow Central Circle

The Moscow Central Circle or MCC (Russian: Московское центральное кольцо, МЦК),[1][2] designated Line 14 and marked in a strawberry red/white color is a 54-kilometre-long (34 mi) orbital urban/metropolitan rail line that encircles historical Moscow. The line is rebuilt from the Little Ring of the Moscow Railway and opened to passengers on 10 September 2016[3][4] and is operated by the Moscow Government owned company MKZD through the Moscow Metro, with the state-run Russian Railways selected as the operation subcontractor. The infrastructure, trackage and platforms are owned and managed by Russian Railways,[5] while most station buildings are owned by MKZD.

#14 Moscow Central Circle Moscow Central Circle
Станция МЦК «Лужники» (сентябрь 2016).jpg
Krymskaya MCC station.jpg
Shelepiha platform.jpg
MCC Ploschad Gagarina.jpg
MCC Delovoy centr.jpg
Other name(s)MCC, МЦК, Окружная ЖД, 14 линия
Native nameМосковское центральное кольцо
OwnerRussian Railways (track infrastructure and operation)
MKZD (stations)
1 underground
3 elevated
27 surface
TypeHeavy rail, commuter rail
SystemMoscow Metro
Operator(s)Russian Railways
Moscow Metro (client)
Rolling stockSiemens ES2G Lastochka
Daily ridership460,000
Opened10 September 2016
Line length54 km (34 mi)
CharacterAboveground, surface, partially underground
Track gauge1,520 mm (4 ft 11+2732 in)
Electrification3 kV DC overhead line
Operating speed37 km/h (23 mph) (average)
110 km/h (68 mph) (maximum)
Route map

Transfer for #9 Serpukhovsko–Timiryazevskaya line at Vladykino
Botanichesky Sad
Ground transferTransfer for #6 Kaluzhsko–Rizhskaya line at Botanichesky Sad
Aeroexpress Ground transferTransfer for #10 Lyublinsko–Dmitrovskaya line at Okruzhnaya Transfer for #D1 Line D1 (Moscow Central Diameters) at Okruzhnaya railway station
Rostokino (Yaroslavsky suburban direction)
Likhobory railway station
Bulvar Rokossovskogo
Ground transferTransfer for #1 Sokolnicheskaya line at Bulvar Rokossovskogo
Ground transferTransfer for #2 Zamoskvoretskaya line at Voykovskaya
Vostochny Railway Terminal Transfer for #1 Sokolnicheskaya line at Cherkizovskaya
Transfer for #D2 Line D2 (Moscow Central Diameters) at Streshnevo railway stationGround transferTransfer for #2 Zamoskvoretskaya line at Voykovskaya
Ground transferTransfer for #3 Arbatsko–Pokrovskaya line at Partizanskaya
Ground transferTransfer for #7 Tagansko–Krasnopresnenskaya line at Oktyabrskoye Pole
Sokolinaya Gora
Ground transferTransfer for #7 Tagansko–Krasnopresnenskaya line at Oktyabrskoye Pole
Shosse Entuziastov
Ground transferTransfer for #8 Kalininskaya line at Shosse Entuziastov
Ground transferTransfer for #11 Bolshaya Koltsevaya line at KhoroshyovskayaTransfer for #11A Bolshaya Koltsevaya line at Khoroshyovskaya Transfer for #7 Tagansko–Krasnopresnenskaya line at Polezhayevskaya
Russian Railways
Aeroexpress Transfer for #11A Bolshaya Koltsevaya line at ShelepikhaGround transferTransfer for #D1 Line D1 (Moscow Central Diameters) at Testovskaya railway station
Russian Railways Transfer for #15 Nekrasovskaya line at Nizhegorodskaya
Aeroexpress Transfer for #4A Filyovskaya line at Mezhdunarodnaya Ground transferTransfer for #D1 Line D1 (Moscow Central Diameters) at Testovskaya railway station
Delovoy Tsentr
Transfer for #D2 Line D2 (Moscow Central Diameters) at Novokhokhlovskaya railway station
Transfer for #4 Filyovskaya line at Kutuzovskaya
Ground transferTransfer for #10 Lyublinsko–Dmitrovskaya line at Dubrovka Transfer for #10 Lyublinsko–Dmitrovskaya line at Kozhukhovskaya
Ground transferTransfer for #2 Zamoskvoretskaya line at Avtozavodskaya
Moskva River Cable Car Ground transferTransfer for #1 Sokolnicheskaya line at Sportivnaya
(Transfer for #16 Troitskaya line at ZIL Transfer for #18 18 line at ZIL)
Transfer for #6 Kaluzhsko–Rizhskaya line at Leninsky Prospekt
Ploshchad Gagarina
Verkhniye Kotly
Aeroexpress Ground transferTransfer for #9 Serpukhovsko–Timiryazevskaya line at Nagatinskaya
(Transfer for #16 Troitskaya line at Sevastopolsky Prospekt)
Geographical map of Moscow Metro with Central Circle colored in red line, the rest is colored in dark gray.


The railroad was commissioned in 1897 under the auspices of Emperor Nicholas II, thus earning a "Royal Railroad" nickname.[6] The planning took five years. Thirteen design alternatives were reviewed in the process. The winning bid was for a four-track rail line, with two tracks allocated for freight, and the other two used by passenger trains. The project came with an estimated 40 million ruble price tag.

In May 1902, construction began. Following a defeat in the 1905 Russo-Japanese War, construction was scaled back. As the costs overran the estimate by a third, the number of tracks being built was reduced to two. Bridges, of which there are 35 (4 big and 31 small), were particularly costly. Their low clearance hindered electrification efforts for over a century to come.[7] The vast railroad infrastructure included housing facilities, water towers, smithies, and miscellaneous shops.[8][7] Station houses — architectural masterpieces built in the typical early-20th-century Russian industrial style[9] — had electricity.[8] Heat was provided by masonry heaters, some of which were Russian-made, and some imported from Holland. Station clocks were purchased from Swiss manufacturer Paul Buhré. Known for their accuracy, these clocks, for a while, became the city's de facto time standard.

  • Only one such clock has survived. It is located in Presnya station supervisor's office.

The first train ran in 1907.[6] On 19 July 1908, the railroad officially opened. The opening ceremony was attended by the Czar, Royal Dynasty members, and government and city officials.

In the first few months, the railroad was used exclusively for passenger traffic. Due to a high train fare — at 3.40 rubles — ridership was virtually non-existent, and the line brought in the total of 132 rubles in revenue since the operation started. Thus, on 10 October 1908, passenger trains were discontinued in favor of freight service.

Between World War I and the October Revolution of 1917, the passenger service was restored, although freight remained the only viable revenue source. By the late 1920s, other forms of public transportation had emerged and in 1934, passenger service was ended — a year before the introduction of Moscow Metro. The break from passenger use took almost a century — it took over 80 years of Moscow's growth and development to reintroduce the railroad to its initial role.


Example of a transport hub on the Moscow Central Circle

Around 2010, many millions of people used the city's subway system daily. Some 35-40% used private transportation, leading to severe road congestion.[10]

Upgrade plans for the railway line were signed by Russian Railways and the Moscow Government between 2008 and 2011 with consent of Vladimir Putin (Prime Minister at the time). Construction work planned for 2013–2016 would convert the Little Ring line of the Moscow Railway for joint passenger and freight use but in 2012, at a meeting with new Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in Odintsovo, Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin acknowledged that trains on the circle railway would not be fully ready until 2020.[10] The required work included:

  • Electrification of the whole line with 3 kV DC overhead wires and the construction of substations
  • Complete track replacement with additional third track on the northern half of the circle
  • Construction of new passenger stations and rehabilitation of old yards
  • Construction of Podmoskovnaya depot for EMU trains
  • Construction of an additional second track and station upgrades on the northern section of the Greater Ring of the Moscow Railway (a large orbital line outside the city), for re-routing freight traffic away from central Moscow
  • Replacement for most bridges and overpasses
  • New rolling stock specifically designed for urban service
  • Construction of transfers with existing and under construction Moscow Metro stations

Construction commenced in 2012, and passenger services began in the third quarter of 2016.[6][11] During the reconstruction of the railway, many of the original passenger stations were re-purposed for passenger use and complemented with new stations.[12]

Opening and operationEdit

Mayor of Moscow Sergey Sobyanin and President Vladimir Putin on the opening day of the MCC.

The line opened on 10 September 2016 in the presence of President Vladimir Putin and Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin.[13] The line was free to ride for the first month of operation.[14][15] By the end of 2016, the daily ridership on the Central Circle Line was expected to reach 400,000 and by 2025, the ring railway is expected to carry up to 300 million passengers annually.

The operation of the Central Circle is similar to the S-Train systems in Germany and other countries.[16] Ticketing on the Moscow Central Circle is fully integrated with the Moscow Metro; the same payment cards (such as the Troika card) can be used on both systems, and free transfers are possible within 90 minutes since the first entry into the system, in a way similar to the transfers between the Metro proper and the Moscow Monorail.[17] The line serves the purpose of a connector between the different radial lines of outer Moscow, much as the Koltsevaya Line does in inner Moscow.[18] 130 trains per day circulate around the line, with an interval of 5–6 minutes during the rush hours, and 10–15 minutes at other times. The line's hours of operation are the same as the rest of the Metro, from 06:00 until 01:00.[19] The time for one orbital ride is around 87 minutes.[20]

Despite its name, the Moscow Central Circle is not perfectly circle-shaped. The line stretches 12 kilometres (7.5 mi) outward in the north and draws as close as 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) to the Kremlin in the south.[6] Its connected to Rokossovsky Boulevard metro station, northern end of Line 1; yet it's also connected to Sportivnaya metro station of Line 1 on the south - which is closer to Kremlin than Line 1's Vorobyovy Gory metro station situated on Moscow river. Another circle line, Bolshaya Koltsevaya line (an extension of Line 11/Kakhovskaya Line) is under construction, but will instead stretch to the south.

It was estimated 1,5 million people lived near the line in the early 21st century.[6]


The Central Circle Line has 31 stations.

The line working hours are over 1,5 hours shorter than other lines. First trains leaving terminal stations between 5:45 and 5:55. Last trains coming to terminal stations between 1:00 and 1:15. Headways are 4 minutes in pre, peak and post-peak hours and 8 minutes in early day, midday and late day.

Direct transfers to other lines marked with   icon, representing a passenger interchanging under a roof. Walking distance is given for free out-of-station transfers. Free transfer between MCC and metro stations requires the first rail journey before transfer to be done within 88 minutes.[21]

All trains stop on all stations.

Station Name Distance (km) Transfers Notes
English Russian Between
↑ Loop line towards Likhobory
Okruzhnaya Окружная 1.3 ↑ 54.0 ↑   Okruzhnaya
  Okruzhnaya (640m)
Direct   transfer is under construction and planned to open in December 2019.
Vladykino Владыкино 1.4 1.4   Vladykino  
Botanichesky Sad Ботанический сад 2.9 4.3   Botanichesky Sad (230m)
Rostokino Ростокино 1.8 6.1
Belokamennaya Белокаменная 2.6 8.7
Bulvar Rokossovskogo Бульвар Рокоссовского 2.6 11.3   Bulvar Rokossovskogo (260m)
Lokomotiv Локомотив 1.6 12.9   Cherkizovskaya  
Izmaylovo Измайлово 1.6 14.5   Partizanskaya (480m)
Sokolinaya Gora Соколиная Гора 2.1 16.6
Shosse Entuziastov Шоссе Энтузиастов 1.4 18.0   Shosse Entuziastov (460m)
Andronovka Андроновка 1.5 19.5
Nizhegorodskaya Нижегородская 1.8 21.3   Nizhegorodskaya Transfer with   to open in the future.
Novokhokhlovskaya Новохохловская 1.1 22.4   Novokhokhlovskaya
Ugreshskaya Угрешская 1.4 23.8
Dubrovka Дубровка 1.4 25.2   Dubrovka (870m)
Avtozavodskaya Автозаводская 1.2 26.4   Avtozavodskaya (440m)
ZIL ЗИЛ 1.4 27.8
Verkhniye Kotly Верхние Котлы 2.1 29.9
Krymskaya Крымская 0.8 30.7
Ploshchad Gagarina Площадь Гагарина 2.3 33.0   Leninsky Prospekt  
Luzhniki Лужники 2.3 35.3   Sportivnaya (170m)
Kutuzovskaya Кутузовская 2.7 38.0   Kutuzovskaya  
Delovoy Tsentr Деловой центр 0.9 38.9   Testovskaya
Shelepikha Шелепиха 1.1 40.0  ( ) Shelepikha  
Khoroshyovo Хорошёво 2.6 42.6   Polezhayevskaya (690m)
 ( ) Khoroshyovskaya (680m)
Zorge Зорге 1.2 43.8
Panfilovskaya Панфиловская 1.3 45.1   Oktyabrskoye Pole (720m)
Streshnevo Стрешнево 1.8 46.9   Streshnevo
Baltiyskaya Балтийская 1.6 48.5   Voykovskaya (750 m)
Koptevo Коптево 2.1 50.6
Likhobory Лихоборы 2.1 52.7
↓ Loop line towards Okruzhnaya

Rolling stockEdit

The line is operated by 61 Siemens ES2G Lastochka trains from Podmoskovnaya depot (trains with numbers from 012 to 072).[22] Andronovka, Belokamennaya, Likhobory and Presnya MK MZD yards also serves as depots.


  1. ^ "МКЖД официально переименовали в Московское центральное кольцо". Rossiya Segodnya.
  2. ^ "МКЖД получила название Московское центральное кольцо".
  3. ^ Rupasova, Anastasia (2016-09-09). "How Moscow's new light rail system will make life easier for passengers". (The author incorrectly refers to the system as "light rail", even as she correctly identifies the rolling stock as Lastochka, which is a standard railway trainset)
  4. ^ "Власти Москвы запустят МЦК для пассажиров 10 сентября (Moscow's authorities will start operating passenger service on Moscow Central Ring on September 10)".
  5. ^ "Стартовал второй этап тестовой обкатки "Московской кругосветки"". Retrieved 2016-12-04.
  6. ^ a b c d e "Archived copy" Московская кругосветка № 23 (54) (PDF) (in Russian). Большая Москва. 2015-06-24. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-03-18.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ a b "История МЦК". Единый Транспортный Портал. Retrieved 16 September 2016.
  8. ^ a b Кочкурова, Анна. "Альбом сооружений Московской окружной железной дороги 1903-1908 гг". История России до 1917 года. Retrieved 15 September 2016.
  9. ^ Агеева Р.А. и др, Р.А. и др (2007). Имена московских улиц. Топонимический словарь. Moscow: ОГИ. Archived from the original on 12 September 2016. Retrieved 28 December 2011.
  10. ^ a b "Премьер Дмитрий Медведев провел совещание по развитию московского транспортного узла до 2020 года (Prime Minister Medvedev chaired a meeting on the development of Moscow transportation hub thru 2020". Archived from the original on December 8, 2015. Retrieved 2015-09-13.
  11. ^ И. Ленский (2015-06-27). Здравствуй, городская электричка! Интервью гендиректора ОАО "МКЖД" А. В. Зотова (in Russian). Без штампов. Retrieved 2016-03-18.
  12. ^ "Moscow City Transport (Mosgortrans)". Archived from the original on 2009-09-25.
  13. ^ "Archived copy" Вечерняя Москва - Владимир Путин и Сергей Собянин открыли движение на Московском центральном кольце (in Russian). Вечерняя Москва. 2016-09-10. Archived from the original on 2016-09-11. Retrieved 2016-09-10.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ МКЖД получила название "Вторая кольцевая линия" на схеме метро Москвы (in Russian). ТАСС. 2016-06-07. Retrieved 2016-06-12.
  15. ^ Сергей Собянин: Первый месяц МЦК будет работать бесплатно (in Russian). Официальный сайт мэра Москвы. 2016-08-31.
  16. ^ " - неофициальный сайт о Малом кольце МЖД" (in Russian). В 2016 году запланировано открытие регулярного пассажирского движения электропоездов (городская электричка) по Малому кольцу МЖД.
  17. ^ Moscow Central Ring riders will be able to use standard multi-fare passes, 90 minute tickets and Troika cards, Official site of Moscow City Government
  18. ^ МЦК: До начала регулярного движения осталось меньше месяца (in Russian). Большая Москва. 2016-08-16. Retrieved 2016-09-01.
  19. ^ Как выглядит МЦК накануне открытия — The Village (in Russian)
  20. ^ Timetable on
  21. ^ Бесплатные пересадки Московского центрального кольца, MCC official Facebook group
  22. ^ "ES1 — List of rolling stock". TrainPix. Retrieved 2017-07-11.

External linksEdit