High-speed trains on Thursday began running between Moscow and Tver, a city some 160 kilometers northwest of the Russian capital, in the latest expansion of Russia's fast rail network.
The first train departed from Moscow's Leningradsky Station carrying on board a number of top Russian officials including Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, the TASS news agency reported.
The Lastochka ("Swallow") fast train has a maximum speed of 160 kilometers per hour and will reduce travel time to Tver by one hour to 1.5 hours. It will stop at a number of local stations and pass through the regional town of Zelenograd, cutting travel time to that city from 57 minutes to 25 minutes.
At rush hour, high-speed trains between Moscow and Zelenograd's Kryukovo station will run every 7 minutes, according to TASS.
A one-way ticket from Moscow to Tver costs 400 rubles ($6), while a ticket to Zelenograd costs 160 rubles ($2.50), the agency said.
The Tver line is the latest addition to Russia's fledgeling high-speed network. First appearing 6 years ago, fast trains now connect Moscow with Tver, St. Petersburg and Helsinki to the west, and Nizhny Novgorod to the east.
A high-speed rail link between Moscow and Kazan, 700 kilometers east, is planned by 2020, and authorities are discussing with China the construction of a fast railroad between Moscow and Beijing — a journey that currently takes about a week on the Trans-Siberian Railway.
Lastochka trains were originally designed by Germany's Siemens to operate in Sochi during the Winter Olympics last year, and began to be produced in Russia in 2013.