Zoloti Vorota (Kiev Metro)

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Zoloti Vorota
Kyiv Metro logo.svg Kiev Metro station
Золоті Ворота.jpg
The central hall is covered with mosaic decorated arcs reminiscent of ancient Rus' temple architecture.
Station statistics
Coordinates 50°26′54″N 30°30′48″E / 50.44833°N 30.51333°E / 50.44833; 30.51333Coordinates: 50°26′54″N 30°30′48″E / 50.44833°N 30.51333°E / 50.44833; 30.51333
Line(s) Syretsko-Pecherska Line Syretsko-Pecherska Line
Structure type Deep column station
Depth 96.5 m (317 ft)[1]
Other information
Opened 31 December 1989[2]
Station code 314
Passengers (2011) 19,900 (daily)[3]
Preceding station   Kiev Metro   Following station
toward Syrets
Syretsko-Pecherska Line
Sviatoshynsko-Brovarska Line
Transfer at: Teatralna
toward Lisova

Zoloti Vorota (Ukrainian: Золотi Ворота) is the 29th[1] station of the Kiev Metro system that serves the Ukrainian capital. The station was opened as part of the first segment of the Syretsko-Pecherska Line on 31 December 1989. It serves as a transfer station to the Teatralna station of the Sviatoshynsko-Brovarska Line.[2]

The station was designed in the form of an ancient Kievan Rus' temple[4][5] by architects Borys Zhezherin, Vadym Zhezherin, and Mykola Zharikov, who in 1991 were bestowed the State Prize of Ukraine in the Field of Architecture for their work on the station.[6] In 2011, the station's mosaics were listed as "newly discovered objects of cultural heritage" by the city's Department of Cultural Heritage.[7]

The station's only street entrance is located on Volodymyrska Street, near the city's eponymous Golden Gate, for which the station is named for. As of 2011, it has a daily ridership of 19,900,[3] and is operational from 05:39 to 00:06 daily.[2] A list compiled by The Daily Telegraph in 2013 named the Zoloti Vorota station as one of the most beautiful metro stations in Europe,[4][8] a feat widely regarded throughout the world.[5][9]


The initial plans for the future Syretsko-Pecherska Line called for a transfer station (named "Kominternivska")[10] to connect with the Sviatoshynsko-Brovarska Line at Universytet station. However, the short central hall at Universytet was inadequate for the high volume of passengers that a transfer station would be subject to, thus the station's future location was moved a few city blocks to coincide with a newly proposed station of the Sviatoshynsko-Brovarska Line.

This new station, called Teatralna, would be located in between the Khreshchatyk and Universytet stations, and would serve as a transfer to the future Zoloti Vorota station. Although the Kominternivska station was never built, some of its architectural designs were preserved and used in the creation of the Teatralna station.[10]

Construction for the Syretsko-Pecherska Line, the Kiev Metro system's third line, began in 1982. It had a projected date of completion in 1986,[10] although the line's opening was delayed until the end of 1989.[10] The line's first segment consisted of three stations, beginning at Zoloti Vorota and ending at Klovska. For some time, the Zoloti Vorota station served as the line's northern terminus, although constant expansion soon placed the station in between the Lukianivska and Palats Sportu stations, although there is an unfinished preceding station from the northernly direction named Lvivska Brama.

The station is located at a depth of 96.5 m (317 ft), creating the need for an underground vestibule in between the two escalator tunnels. The underground vestibule was also designed by the Zhezherin family.


The station's massive chandeliers, flanked by the ceiling's mosaic pieces.

From an engineering standpoint, Zoloti Vorota was built as a deep column station, at a depth of 96.5 m (317 ft) underground.[1] It consists of three distinct vaulted halls, featuring one central hall, and two side platform halls, each separated by a row of columns.[2] The central hall is connected to the only above-ground vestibule through two escalator tunnels,[2] separated by an underground vestibule, which was needed because of the depth at which the station is located at. Its design and formation is nearly analogous with the Maidan Nezalezhnosti station of the system's Kurenivsko-Chervonoarmiyska Line.[10]

The station's original plans were designed by a team of Moscow architects from Metrogiprotrans; their design was strictly utilitarian, architecturally similar to the other metro stations of that period.[4][5] However, due to the socio-economic changes taking place in the country at the time, the original design was scrapped because it was considered "too weak" for one of the city's main metro stations. Thanks to the efforts of the city's chief architect Mykola Zharikov, a new design contest was ordered.[5]

Close-up of a light fixture in the station's underground vestibule.

The contest was won by Borys and his son Vadym Zhezherin and Mykola Zharikov, who created an entirely new design within two weeks. They were supported by architects F. Zaremba and O. Krushynskyi who were responsible for designing the above-ground vestibule.[2][11] At the time of the redesign, the station's construction based upon the original utilitarian design still continued.[10] The new design was created in the form of a Kievan Rus' temple,[4][5] featuring unique mosaic pieces spanning across the entire station.

The central hall's height was increased, and the original design's pylons were replaced with much lower columns, finished off with white marble and matte polish.[12] In particular, the white ceiling was divided with diametrical mosaic stripes with brick grouting on the sides, completed by artists Hryhoriy Koren and Volodymyr Fedko.[11]

The station is illuminated by two-tierd bronze chandeliers, each featuring 12 distinct lighting groups holding candle-like bulbs. The chandeliers, designed by Stanislav Adamenko and Mariya Ralko,[10] were installed in the aperture between each of the mosaic stripes.[12] Both the station halls and the underground vestibule feature similar light fixtures, although they are significantly smaller than the main chandeliers. The redesign also called for a gold smalt-covered ceiling, although that wasn't economically feasible and was rejected.[10] To finish it off, gray granite was used on the floor.


Close up of the gold name inscription which was carried out in an ancient Rus'-style font.[12]

The Zoloti Vorota station features a number of mosaic decorations, which were completed by artists Hryhoriy Koren and Volodymyr Fedko.[11] Walking clockwise from the beginning of the station to the end, one can essentially trace the history of Kievan Rus' through each of the mosaics.[1][2][12] One of the mosaic pieces near the escalators includes an inscription featuring a Ukrainian nationalist slogan, stating СЛАВА УКРАЇНІ, which is translated as Glory to Ukraine.[13][nb 1]

The station features a great number of mosaics depicting many of the Grand Princes of Kievan Rus':[14] Kyi, Shchek, Khoryv, Lybid, Askold, Dir, Oleg, Igor, Olga, Sviatoslav I, Vladimir the Great, Yaroslav the Wise, Iziaslav I, Vsevolod I, Sviatopolk II, Vladimir II Monomakh, Mstislav I, Yaropolk II, Vsevolod II, Iziaslav II, Rostislav I, Roman I, Sviatoslav III, Rurik Rostislavich, Mstislav III, Vladimir IV Rurikovich, and Danylo of Halych.

The station also has a number of mosaics depicting various other personalities of the Kievan Rus' era:[14] Anthony, Theodosius, Anne, Hilarion, Agapetus, Alypius, Nestor the Chronicler, Petro Milonig, and Sylvester. In addition, the station also features eight mosaic pieces of ancient Kiev's churches:[14] Church of the Tithes, Saint Sophia's Cathedral, Kiev, Iryninska Church, St. Michael's Golden-Domed Cathedral, Church of the Saviour at Berestove, Dormition Cathedral, Church of the Mother of God Pyrohoshchya, and the St. Cyril's Monastery.[14]

Examples of station mosaics
Mosaic depicting Yaropolk II of Kiev with one of the chandeliers seen in the background. 
An example of the mosaics covering the station's white marble covered pillars. 
A mosaic piece depicting the Church of the Tithes, which was destroyed by Soviet authorities in 1928. 
Mosaics depicting the patron saint of Kiev, Michael the Archangel, flanked by two mythical creatures. 
See more on the Wikimedia Commons


  1. ^ It is important to note that Ukraine was not a sovereign nation-state in 1989, and any reference to Ukrainian nationalism was criminalized.[11]
  1. ^ a b c d "Kyiv Metropoliten. "Zoloti Vorota" station". Prime Excursion Bureau (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Zoloti Vorota". Kyiv Metropoliten (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  3. ^ a b "Passenger traffic". Kiev Meto forum – Unofficial website (in Russian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d ""Zoloti Vorota" station was declared one of the most beautiful in Europe (photo)". UNIAN (in Ukrainian). 10 January 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c d e Zheliazo, Elena (20 January 2001). "During the inauguration of the metro station "Zolotye Vorota" in Kiev all present guests suddenly sang...". Fakty i Kommentarii (in Russian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  6. ^ Laws of Ukraine. Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No. 394-91-п: On the bestowment of the State Prizes of Ukraine in Architecture in 1991 (Про присудження Державних премій України по архітектурі 1991 року). Passed on 30 December 1991. (Ukrainian)
  7. ^ "Objects of Cultural heritage of the Shevchenko Raion in Kyiv" (Microsoft Word .doc). Order of the Department of Cultural Heritage of the Kyiv City State Administration (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  8. ^ "Zoloti Vorota metro station in Kyiv included in list of most impressive stations in Europe". Interfax-Ukraine. Kyiv Post. 11 January 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  9. ^ "Top-15 most beautiful metro stations of the world". Ukrayinska Pravda (in Ukrainian). 23 November 2011. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h Totskiy, Oleg. "Zolotye Vorota". Metro, which no longer exists (in Russian). LiveJournal. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  11. ^ a b c d "14 metro stations with elements of ehtnic design". rukotvory.com.ua (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  12. ^ a b c d ""Zoloti Vorota" station is considered one of the most beautiful stations in the world". Zerkalo Nedeli (in Russian). 10 January 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  13. ^ "Slava Ukraine in the Kiev Metro". metropolis.kiev.ua (in Russian). Brief Guide to Kiev Bridges. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  14. ^ a b c d "Kyiv Metro station Zoloti Vorota (mosaics)". http://kiev-book.narod.ru (in Russian). Retrieved 7 April 2014. 

External links[edit]

External images
Photo of the original utilitarian design
Second proposed utilitarian design
Source: "Zolotye Vorota" Metro, which no longer exists. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
Preceded by
Syretsko-Pecherska Line Syretsko-Pecherska Line terminus
31 December 1989 – 30 March 1996
Succeeded by