Sparrow Hills

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A view of Sparrow Hills from the Luzhetskaya Embankment

Sparrow Hills (Russian: Воробьёвы го́ры, Vorobyovy Gory), known as Lenin Hills (Ле́нинские го́ры, Leninskiye Gory) between 1935 and 1991, is a hill on the right bank of the Moskva River and one of the highest points in Moscow, reaching a height of 220 m (720 ft), or 60–70 m (200–230 ft) above the river level.

The observation platform, which gives a good panoramic view of the city, is on a steep bank 85 m (279 ft) above the river, or 200 m (660 ft) above sea level. The Luzhniki Stadium (formerly the Lenin Stadium), where the opening and closing ceremonies for the 1980 Summer Olympics took place, is right below, across the Moskva River. Next to it is the Novodevichy Convent, with its Naryshkin Baroque towers.

Not far from the observation platform is the Luzhniki Metro Bridge. The two-level Metro-Bridge traverses the river to link Komsomolsky Prospekt with Vernadsky Prospekt. It serves two urban transport systems: motor vehicles and the Moscow Metro subway. The glass-walled subway station Vorobyovy Gory is at the lower level of the bridge.

The Embassy of the People's Republic of China in Russia, the largest foreign diplomatic compound in the world, is situated not far[clarification needed] from Sparrow Hills.

The hills, immortalized by many Russian poets and writers, are thought[according to whom?] to have been named after the village Vorobyovo, which was acquired by Grand Duchess Sophia Vitovtovna, Vitovt's only daughter, from the priest Vorobey in 1451. Alexander I of Russia wished to build the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour there; his successor had construction works suspended and the cathedral eventually was erected near the Kremlin.

The main landmarks of the hills are the Moscow State University (at one time the tallest building in Europe) and the Trinity Church.

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Coordinates: 55°42′36″N 37°32′35″E / 55.710°N 37.543°E / 55.710; 37.543