Grand Maket Rossiya is a private museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia. It is a model layout designed on a scale of 1:87. The area of the model is 800 m², i.e., 8611 square feet. In this area collective images of regions of the Russian Federation are represented. It is the largest model layout in Russia and the second largest in the world (after the Miniatur Wunderland in Hamburg, Germany).The model is located in a two story building built in 1953 in the style of Stalin's empire. The creator and the investor of the project is a Saint Petersburg businessman, Sergey Morozov.
The creation of the layout took 5 years. In those five years it employed over a hundred people. First a wooden frame to be used under the model was made. Then the foundations for the roads and railroads were made. Later, the model wooden ribs were installed and a layer of plaster (11 tons were used) was cast to create the desired shape of the landscape. The design of the surface took one specialist about a month.
The first visitors were allowed in the museum in April 2011. For the next 14 months the museum worked in test mode, only taking visitors on the weekend. The official opening took place on June 8 in 2012.
The model presents an image of everyday life in Russia, realized through models. These everyday situations represent different human activities, such as work, leisure, sports, studying, military service, country life, travel, mass celebrations and even an attempt to escape from prison. Ground transportation is represented by various kinds of cars and trucks, trams, buses, trains, agricultural, construction and military equipment. Visitors have an opportunity to set things in motion on the model by pushing interactive buttons placed around the layout.
The Day/Night system
Every 13 minutes the lighting of the model is changed as day turns gradually into night. The night lighting lasts for 2 minutes. For the first time more than 500 000 LED lights in different colours were used to illuminate the model without creating shadows.
Wirelessly powered model car at Grand Maket Rossiya
Movement of vehicles
The movement of the cars in the model is realistic. The cars and buses stop at trafic lights, bus stops and flashing signals and they change speeds and bypass each other. The electrical energy for the automobiles is obtained remotely from underneath the model, so the cars themselves don't appear to have a power supply. This method for moving cars is used in Grand Maket Rossiya for the first time in the world.
To optimize the traffic on the layout, it was built in many levels, using more than 2500 meters of rails and 452 switch boxes. The total number of rolling stock is more than 2700, of which 250 are locomotives and 10 are special cleaning trains. The variety of the moving trains is created using two revolver exchangers that store up to 60 trains and dispatch them when needed. On the layout there are also two turntables which can turn the locomotives up to 180 degrees. The largest height difference in the model is 1 meter. This is achieved with over 50 meters of spiral lifts.