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From the railway station to the church.

English translation by Dmitriy Sharov

The main street of Terijoki, called the Viertotie, used to have about 6 km in the length and start prior to the railway bridge (tunnelli), next to the Orthodox church, then turn right and end at the border of the village Tyrisevä (Ushkovo). The Viertotie continued to the North of the railway bridge, which was known as Kivennapa road (Kivennavantie). The road, heading right (east of the church), was called the Kuokkala road (Kuokkalantie). At the moment, the branch of the Viertotie from the church to the bridge, along with the part of the former Kivennapa road to the border of Zelenogorsk, is called the Lenin avenue.


But prior to coming out to the Viertotie, we'll hold on a bit on the railway station quad. To read more about the history of the Terijoki railway station click here. We will only mark the fact that the existing building of the new station was constructed in 1914-17, and re-modeled after the damage, brought by the wars, later, in 1950. The pictures, presented below, show that the building has kept elements of it's original appearance, after being remodeled.

The view from the railway station quad.

The view from the platform.

During the period of Russian "dacha" seasons, hundreds of cabmen were awaiting passengers from the "dacha" trains. The demand for their services was huge enough to even attract labor from distant villages. There was enough work for everyone, and the daily wage of 5 to 6 roubles (13 to 15 marks), was considered moderate. The costs were high, despite all attempts to control them from the part of the administration. At the peak of the season, a kilometer-long caravan of various cabs, was running from the station towards the recreational "dacha" area. There were regular carts with hard wheels, and even convertable doubles on rubber, just like those in St. Petersburg. Sometimes you could even run into owned carriages with personal cabmen, wearing styled uniform.

The last two years before the 1st Worldwar, a "tram", specially brought from St. Petersburg, ran from the train station down the Viertotie. It looked like a means of transport, resembling a bus - with rubber wheels, and driven by an engine. The seats were located longitudally inside, and there even was a staircase, leading to the roof, where you could also find sitting places.

Now, we are moving from the trainstation quad down to the railway bridge. The bridge was constructed simultaneously with the new station building (1914-1917), and later destroyed by the wars. The remodeled bridge looks slightly different (see photo). Having passed the bridge from under, we are now back to the Viertotie.

The view of the Viertotie and the bridge from the Kivennapa road.

The view of the Viertotie from the bridge. On the left are the houses of Axel Toivola, they did not survive until today. Today, the Zelenogorsk highway touches the Lenin avenue in the place, where those houses were. To the right - is the apartment building for the railway personnel (also did not survive), in background is the house of Shakhov.

The view from the Viertotie to the railway bridge and the Kivennapa road. On the left is the old water tower (did not survive)

According to the dictionary, Finnish word "Viertotie" means "highway", (A.N. Molchanov also interpretes it as "freeway"). However, there also is a Finnish verb "Viertää", which has two meanings: 1) To burn woods, to cut forest and burn it to clear the room for cropping; 2) To be flattened, to run down flat under a certain angle, e.g., this toponimus can be roughly interpreted either as "forest path", or "downhill road". Both versions are full of sense. Experts and native speakers, please, accept my apologies about this little linguistic research.

For a relatively long time, it was dead-end forest cut road, leading from the village of Terijoki to the volost center of Kivennapa (Pervomayskoye). Only after the construction of the railroad, and the appearence of the recreation area, the highway has been by the state in 1897-98. The road tissue had a stony lower layer, straightened by a steam powered roller. Sidewalks were constructed on each of the sides. Approximately 50 % of the road surface was repaired annually, the stones were taken out of the damaged area by showels, to be replaced with a new layer, and again, flattened by a roller. They were buying stones from peasants, collecting them from fields.

The house of Shakhov on the Viertotie. The first house (middle); downside, the fashion shop of Malinin and the furniture store of Polkisto. Upside - the building of the newspaper, called 'Karelia'. Today - it's the Zelenogorsk printing shop. The second house to the left is the metal hardware store of Shakhov (rautakauppa). However, it did not make it until today, traces of the basement are berely seen from under the layer of soil.

As the Russian recreation seasons began, and the population started to grow, the Viertotie started its development as the heart of commercial and all other types of social life of the local people. This role persisted and even increased when Finland gained independence. The appearence of this street used to define the face of Terijoki as the capital of the entire Karelian neck. There were few residential houses, comprising the basic trading and financial establishments, including temples of all confessions.

The view to the railroad bridge. To the left is the butcher shop of Seilonen (currently - ownerless building), to the right is the former marketplace, which also no longer exists.

In the front is the marketplace and the trading house of Trube (doesn't exist anymore). Across the road is the butcher shop of Seilonen (on the right) and the store of Huuhtanen (which also doesn't exist).

Left to right: The trading house of Trube, on the intersection of Sammonkatu (today - Komsomolskaya str.), National credit bank (today - foodstore), and Kari's confectionary.

The Karelian Neck co-operative (Kannaksen osuusiike). The building was constructed in 1933 by architect Erkki Huttunen in the fashionable for that time "constructivist" style. This style was meant to replace "National Romantism", and was pretty common for Finland of the 30ies. There was a store in the lower floor, the upper floors were designated for offices and rooms for personnel. The warehousing facilities are attached to the building from the side of the backyard. Currently the lower floor is occupied by a foodstore, and the clinic upstairs.

Happened so, that all the confessions, presented in Terijoki, have located their temples on the Viertotie, next to each other, on the same side of the street.

On the left side - there is a wide empty area after the co-op store - currently a parking lot. This place used to be occupied by the hotel "Monrepot". Further is the property of the lutheran church. The church was constructed in 1909, in accordance with the project of architect Joseph Stenbäck, in «national romantism» style. Currently the building is donated to the believers and being reconstructed to it's initial look.

The Terijoki lutheran Church in the past and today.

Immediately behind the church - there is the property of the Catholic community. The catholic community has formed in Terijoki after the revolution, when there appeared to be many Polish refugees. The church was not built specially for the occasion, they used a former summer house (dacha) as a church. The building did not survive until today.

The view to the Karjalainen Hill. To the left is the church, on the right of the old picture is the catholic church, which does not exist any longer. In the middle is the house of Saarenpää (only traces of the basement still remain).

After the catholic community plot, the Viertotie turns strictly right. Here starts a small branch street, called Kirkkonkatu (church street), leading towards the Kuokkala road. On this street, there is a facade of the tremendously looming above the hill, the Temple of the Kazan Virgin. The temple was constructed in 1913, by the project of architect N.N. Nikonov. The first orthodox church appeared in Terijoki in 1881, on the Kuokkala road, but it burnt down in 1907.

The Terijoki Temple in the 30 ies and today.

The Kirkkonkatu, Viertotie and Kuokkala road form a small triangle. There were several houses inside of the triangle, but they did not make it until today. One of those was occupied by the Turkish community with a muslim prayer house. Before the revolution, in St.Petersburg, there was only one colony of turkish traders, many of which were bringing their goods to Terijoki every summer. After the revolution, a part of the turkish community has moved to Finland and settled in Terijoki. By the beginning of the winter war, several families still remained here, about 30 turkish speaking people in total.

The place, where the Viertotie turns right, used to be known under the historical name of the Karjalainen Hill (Karjalaisenmäki) - in the memory of one of the local residents, whose house stood here in times, when neighbors were rare. Here, on the right side of the Viertotie, on a small hill - stands the building of the local police department. It remained unchanged in the wind of changes and is currently being used for its original purpose, hosting the local milicia department.

The view from the bell balcony of the Russian church. To the left - is the police department, the Puhtula mountain is in the background. The lutheran church is on the right. On the left picture you can see the diverse of the Viertotie and Kirkkonkatu

The today's view from the bell-balcony. As we see, everything is surrounded by trees. You can still find the police building, Lutheran church, and the diverse. But the Puhtula mountain looks a bit lower today, don't you think?

Terijoki policemen had enough to do even in the past. As the number of tourists grew, the difference in the mentalities between the local people and newcomers was getting clearer. Noisy behaviour of some representatives of St. Petersburg society was frequently shocking the purity of Karelians with their nordic lifestyle. Along with the 'dacha people' came various Russian workers and servants. Many of them have settled down in the area in a couple of years. Without having a place for permanent residence, they represented "untrustworthy" elements, requiring constant observation. Despite the rapid growth of the population, the working schedule of the local police did not go through any considerable changes. There was more drinking and various violations.

In the beginning of the 20th century, one of the local Finnish language papers wrote: «Sunday nights on the Viertotie show all the worst sides of the human nature in all their nudity. Adult men and under-aged children are humping around, drunk, with their companies and alone. Dirty jokes are being played on unfamiliar peaceful pedestrians, passing by. Especially women are exposed to various nasty things. If a horsed policeman happens to be around - the violators are quiet, but as he moves away - here it goes - the dirty performance starts all over. Actually, life on our Viertotie looks so horrible, that it's even too scary to go there».

Now we are moving back towards the left side of the Viertotie. Here, in the South-West corner of the "triangle" is a small roundish building with columns. In the Soviet times there was a cafeteria, called "Rotonda", also known as the "washer" among the locals, where you could always get some ice-cream for yourself. In the beginning of the 90-ies, the business went down. Long ago, the cafe "Golden Mary" (Kultasen Marin kioski) was here. The cabmen of Terijoki (whose station was situated near) often dropped in this cafe to get a cup of coffee. By the way, this place was considered to be the geographical center of Terijoki, and the road-sign was established here. The "Rotonda" is still in place, they even got it painted for the anniversary of Zelenogorsk, but the building still remains noone's property.

We'll finish our first excursion right on that optimistic note.

Cafe «Rotonda» («Washer»)


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