Novosibirsk is the third largest city of Russia, with a population of over 1.4 million people. It was founded as a junction city between the main transfer arteries in Siberia, the Trans-Siberian railway and the Ob River. Thus, it was not a surprise that the city grew very quickly. Plans for a rapid transit system began to be formed in the late 1960s and on the May 12, 1979 the first construction works began. With wide experience in metro construction from the other metros of the USSR, it took seven-and-a-half years to complete work on the five-station launch stage of the system which was triumphantly opened on January 7, 1986, becoming the eleventh Metro in the USSR and the fourth in Russia. Work quickly expanded to meet the original plans for a four-line 62 km network. However, the financial difficulties of the early 1990s meant that most of the work had to be frozen, and they have been resumed only recently.
The system contains 13 stations on two lines. There are 80 carriages that form 20 four-carriage trains which in some years have carried over 250,000 passengers daily. The stations are vividly decorated in late-Soviet style. Currently, of the 13 stations (12 station plus the interchange station counted twice), seven are pillar-trispan, four are single vaults. There is also a surface level station which follows a 2.145 km covered bridge span of the Ob River.