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Ural Life & Culture
All You Need to Know about Yekaterinburg and the Ural Region
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  • The tram, or street car, is one of the oldest means of public transportation. It originates from horsecar railways and omnibuses, which were widely spread in the 19th century. 
  • Trams in the US appeared independently of Europe. In 1883, Leo Daft started experiments with electric traction. The owner of the Baltimore horsecars got interested in Daft’s work, and two years later an electric tramline was opened.
  • In 1880, Fyodor Pirotsky introduced his first experimental model of the electric tram in Saint Petersburg. In 1881, the first regular electric tram service appeared in Germany. However, due to the resentment of horsecars’ owners, who did not want to lose their profits, trams became widespread only 10 years later.
  • Now the total length of the track in Russia is 2,500 km (1,5625 miles).
  • In 1990, 72 Russian cities had their own tramway system, but in 2011 only 61 remained.
  • Until recently, Saint Petersburg was considered to be the tram capital of Russia. The length of the tramlines used to be more than 600 km (375 miles). In the 1990s, this fact was registered in the Guinness Book of Records.
  • In 1885, electric trams ran over the frozen Neva river. Rails, ties, and conducting columns were installed into the ice.
© Text by Anastasia Kuliashova and Mikhail Brodsky 

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