Novokuznetsk (Russian: Новокузне́цк) is a city in Kemerovo Region, Russia with a population of 549,870 (2002 Census). It is located c. 3,000 km east of Moscow.
Founded as a Cossack outpost on the Tom River, it was initially called Kuznetsk (Кузне́цк). It was here that Fyodor Dostoevsky married his first wife, Maria Isayeva (1857). Joseph Stalin's rapid industrialization of the Soviet Union transformed the sleepy town into a major coal mining and industrial center in the 1930s. In 1931–1932 the city was known as Novokuznetsk and in 1932–1961 as Stalinsk (Ста́линск), after Stalin.
On March 19, 2007 a massive methane explosion ripped through the Ulyanovskaya mine in Novokuznetsk killing over 100 people. The mine was the largest coal producing center in the Kemerovo Region, located in an oil rich area of south central Russia known as the Kuzbass region. It is the deadliest mining accident in recent history.
A webcam operates, well sort of from time to time, to give you a view of the city. It's not always reliable, but here it is: http://www.opentopia.com/showcam.php?id=782&time=1232652964
Local vodka, "Kuznechanka."
Would you like to practice pronouncing the city name? Go here and click on the little speaker: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/Novokuznetsk
The city moved so airport is a distance away. It is named Spichenkovo Airport (Аэропорт Спиченково) because after Novokuznetsk moved, the airport is closer to the small town of Spichenkovo.
KMV Russian air.
KMV flies to/from Moscow 1x day from Spichenkovo Airport (IATA: NOZ, ICAO: UNWW) via Kemerovo.Novokuznetsk in the news:
(The Moscow Times)
The working week, like the winter days in this Siberian city, has become shorter since the global financial crisis paralyzed its heavy industry. Paychecks have been cut by a third or more.
Novokuznetsk’s half a million residents, over 60 percent of whom depend on the steel, coal and aluminum industries, dare not contemplate the alternative — mass layoffs — as they struggle to repay bank loans taken out in more prosperous times. “If nothing changes, we will come up against more serious consequences in February or March,” said Alla Semyonova, director of the city’s employment center. “People have not yet fully grasped what is happening here.”
Novokuznetsk, 3,000 kilometers and four time zones east of Moscow, was booming when demand for steel produced by its two giant mills reached record highs early this year. The sudden reversal in the world economy has hit hard.
Yevgeny Sobolev, head of the city’s labor inspectorate, said up to 80 percent of the city’s employed were now working a four-day week. “This should mean a decrease of one-fifth in salaries, but they are being cut by 50 or 60 percent,” he said. Outside his office, disgruntled employees, mostly from the service sector, queued to voice their complaints.
City drama theatre plaza.