Revolution Engine leads to Norilskaya street
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Revolution Engine leads to Norilskaya street

September 21, 2020

The city of Nizhny Novgorod was founded in 1221 and has changed greatly during its 800-year history.

Today there are 1431 streets, 259 of them have unique names. Most often, names were given in honor of people, natural objects and cities. Norilskaya street belongs to the latter group.

A detailed list of old Nizhny Novgorod streets was left by the local historian Nikolay Hramtsovsky, who published the fundamental work named A Brief Sketch of the History and Description of Nizhny Novgorod in the middle of the 19th century.

Initially, the names of the streets reflected the activity of the population living on these streets – Kanatnaya, Spinning, Kuznechnaya, Bolshaya and Malaya Yamskie, or reported the location of Orthodox churches – Bolshaya Pokrovskaya, Alekseevskaya, Voznesenskaya, Krestovozdvizhenskaya, Aleksandro-Nevskaya. Or they glorified a personality important for the city on the Volga. For example, Alexandrovskaya and Elizavetinskaya streets, named in honor of Emperor Alexander I and his wife Elizaveta Fedorovna, who contributed to the transfer of the Makaryevskaya fair to Nizhny Novgorod in 1817.

After the revolutionary 1918 year, as well as throughout the country, large-scale renaming began. In 1931, the toponyms Varvarskaya, Alekseevskaya, Tikhonovskaya, Bolshaya and Malaya Pecherskaya, Lykova Damba disappeared from the city map… More than 30 historical names in total. They were replaced by the party names or the names of local political officers.

And in 1932, the ancient city was renamed Gorky. Hundreds of streets, squares, parks, steamships, libraries were named after the Petrel of the Revolution. In Nizhny Novgorod, Gorky street appeared instead of Polevaya, Alyosha Peshkov (the real name of Maxim Gorky) street and Gorky square – instead of Pirozhnikovskaya. The original city name return happened only in 1990, when the city habitants found out that they were Nizhny Novgorod residents again.

During the past decades, massive renaming was continuing. So, in 1977, by the decision of the executive committee of the Gorky City Council, 42 names of streets, lanes and squares were changed at once. In Soviet times place names were chosen according to ideological considerations. As in all cities of the country, Lenin avenue and Leninsky district, located in the Zarechnaya part, along the Oka river, between the Kanavinsky and Avtozavodsky districts, appeared in Gorky.

Norilskaya street is located in the Leninsky district, its length is 1117 meters. The longest Nizhny Novgorod street, 13.3 kilometers, is Moscow highway. And the shortest is Yermak street, which is only 37 meters long.

Houses on Norilskaya street, built in 1958-1962, are mostly three- and five-story ones. In addition to residential buildings, there are the Lenin ambulance substation, a kindergarten and secondary school No. 177.

Right at the intersection of Lenin avenue and Norilskaya street there is the Dvigatel Revolyutsii (Revolution Engine) metro station. There is also a monument to the soldiers of the 160/89 Belgorod-Kharkov rifle division who died during the Great Patriotic War.

Read about Norilskaya streets in other cities of the former Soviet Union in the A point on the planet section.

Text: Elena Popova, Photo: open sources

September 21, 2020

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