The Moscow Canal (Russian: Kanal Moskva), known as the "Moscow-Volga Canal" before 1947, is an important ship waterway linking Moscow to the Volga River at Ivankovo, north of Moscow. The canal spans the two states of Moscow and Tver.
The opening of the canal made Moscow a "port of the five seas" (порт пяти морей), with access to the Caspian, Baltic, White, Black, and Azov seas by boat. In addition to developing international shipping and tourism, the canal also brings nearly half of the water supply to Moscow.
Between 1932 and 1937, the canal replaced the canalized Moskva River, which could take only small craft, as the main water access to Moscow. The Moskva-Volga Canal has not only made the city a port for large vessels but also considerably shortened the water transport route. You will learn more about the Moscow Canal in this post.
Introduction of the Moscow Canal
The Moscow canal project began in 1932, took four years and eight months, and was completed on May 1, 1937. During Stalin's reign, all the canal construction was completed by prisoners in labor camps. The completion of the canal provided Moscow with a waterway available for vessels of large carrying capacity and an outlet to the most important water transport route of the Soviet Union, the Volga River, and the Volga-Baltic water system. The canal also supplies water to Moscow for domestic and industrial needs, which promotes the rapid rise in the prosperity of Moscow, the improvements in the conditions of the population, and the development of industries.
The Moscow Canal is a huge and complex water conservancy project, a unique complex that embodies the wisdom of the people of the former Soviet Union. Over the decades, they have built 11 locks and 8 hydropower stations in the entire river and more than 200 artificial construction facilities, such as various water blocking dams, pump stations, tunnels under the river, and inverted siphons, and railway bridges.
The Moscow Canal Size
The Moscow Canal starts from Dubna (a town in the Moscow region) and ends in Moscow. Along the Moscow Canal, with a length of 128 km (80 miles), there are a total of 11 locks. The minimum depth in the canal is 5.5 meters (18 feet), and all locks on the canal route have the same dimensions; each is 951 feet 6 inches long, 98 feet 6 inches wide, and 18 feet 4.5 inches deep.
|Length||128 km (80 miles)|
|Minimum depth||5.5 m (18 ft)|
|Lock dimensions||951'6" long, 98'6" wide, 18'4.5" deep|
Today, the Russian people are still proud of the design and construction of the Moscow Canal. The model of the three-masted sailing ship that Columbus rode on when Columbus discovered the New World is painted on lock No. 3. The walls of locks No. 7, 8, and later No. 9 are painted with relief works depicting the scenes when people built canals at that time. They are all works of art worth seeing.