Vilnius


Vilnius

Infobox Settlement
name = Vilnius
nickname =
settlement_type = City municipality


image_caption = Downtown Vilnius



map_caption = Location of Vilnius
image_shield = Grand Coat of arms of Vilnius.pnglatd=54|latm=41|lats=|latNS=N|longd=25|longm=17|longs=|longEW=E
coordinates_display= inline,title
coordinates_type = region:LT_type:city(620000)
subdivision_type = Country
subdivision_name = LTU
subdivision_type1 = Ethnographic region
subdivision_name1 = Aukštaitija
subdivision_type2 = County
subdivision_name2 = Vilnius County
subdivision_type3 = Municipality
subdivision_name3 = Vilnius city municipality
subdivision_type6 = Capital of
subdivision_name6 = Lithuania
Vilnius County
Vilnius city municipality
Vilnius district municipality
parts_type = Elderships
p1 = Antakalnis
p2 = Fabijoniškės
p3 = Grigiškės
p4 = Justiniškės
p5 = Karoliniškės
p6 = Lazdynai
p7 = Naujamiestis
p8 = Naujininkai
p9 = Naujoji Vilnia
p10 = Paneriai
p11 = Pašilaičiai
p12 = Pilaitė
p13 = Rasos
p14 = Šeškinė
p15 = Šnipiškės
p16 = Verkiai
p17 = Vilkpėdė
p18 = Senamiestis (Old Town)
p19 = Viršuliškės
p20 = Žirmūnai
p21 = Žvėrynas
established_date = 1323
established_title= First mentioned
established_date2= 1387
established_title2= Granted city rights
population_total = 555,613
population_as_of = 2008
area_total_km2 = 401
timezone=EET
utc_offset=+2
timezone_DST=EEST
utc_offset_DST=+3

Vilnius (IPAudio|Vilnius.ogg| ['vilɲus] ) is the largest city and the capital of Lithuania, with a population of 555,613 (847,954 together with Vilnius County) as of 2008. [ [http://vilniustsv.stat.gov.lt/lt/pages/view/?id=1881 Number of population by county, city (town) and municipality |Statistics Lithuania] © Department of Statistics to the Government of the Republic of Lithuania (Statistics Lithuania). Accessed May 2, 2006.] It is the seat of the Vilnius city municipality and of the Vilnius district municipality. It is also the capital of Vilnius County.

Name

Vilnius has also been known by many derivate spelling in different languages throughout its history. Most notable non-Lithuanian names for the city include: _pl. Wilno, _be. Вiльня ("Vilnia"), _sl. Vilna, _de. Wilna, _la. Vilna, _lv. Viļņa, _ru. "Вильнюс", _yi. ווילנע ("Vilne"). An older Russian name is Вильна / Вильно ("Vilna/Vilno"), although Вильнюс ("Vil'njus") is now used. The names "Wilno" and "Vilna" have also been used in older English and French language publications. The name "Vilna" is still used in Finnish and Hebrew languages.

History

Early history

Historian Romas Batūra tend to identify the city with Voruta, one of castles of Mindaugas who was crowned in 1253 as King of Lithuania. The city was first mentioned in written sources in 1323, in letters of Grand Duke Gediminas that were sent to German cities and invited Germans and members of the Jewish community to settle in the capital city. In 1387, the city was granted city rights by Jogaila, one of Gediminas' successors.

Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth period

Between 1503 and 1522 the walls were built to protect the city, and at the time it had nine city gates and three towers. Vilnius reached the peak of its development under the reign of Sigismund August, who moved his court there in 1544. In the following centuries, Vilnius became a constantly growing and developing city. This growth was due in part to the establishment of Almae Academia et Universitas Vilnensis Societatis Jesu by the King Stephen Bathory in 1579. The university soon developed into one of the most important scientific and cultural centres of the region and the most notable scientific centre of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. Political, economic, and social activities were in full swing in the town. In 1769, the Rasos Cemetery, one of the oldest surviving cemeteries in the city, was founded. During its rapid development, the city was open to migrants from both abroad and far reaches of territories of Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Each group made its unique contribution to the life of the city, and crafts, trade and science prospered. During the Russo-Polish War (1654–1667), Vilnius was occupied by Russia for several years. The city was pillaged and burned, and its population was massacred. The city's growth lost its momentum for many years, but the population rebounded, and by the beginning of the 19th century city's population reached 20,000, making the city one of the largest in Northern Europe.

In Russian Empire

After the Third Partition of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth in 15 April 1795, Vilnius was annexed by Russian Empire and became the capital of a Vilna Governorate. During the Russian occupation the city walls were destroyed, and by 1805, only the Gate of Dawn remained. In 1812, the city was seized by Napoleon on his push towards Moscow. Following the November Uprising in 1831, Vilnius University was closed and Russian repressions halted the further development of the city. During the January Uprising in 1863 heavy fighting occurred within the city, but was brutally pacified by Mikhail Muravyov, nicknamed "The Hangman" by the population because of the number of executions he organized. After the uprising, all civil liberties were withdrawn, and use of the Polish [ [http://www.vdu.lt/staff/HMF/Aleksandravicius_an.htm Egidijus Aleksandravičius] , Antanas Kulakauskas; "Carų valdžioje: Lietuva XIX amžiuje" ("Lithuania under the reign of Czars in 19th century"); Baltos lankos, Vilnius 1996. Polish translation: "Pod władzą carów: Litwa w XIX wieku", Universitas, Kraków 2003, page 90, ISBN 83-7052-543-1] and Lithuanian languages was banned. in early 20th century Lithuanian speaking population constituted only a small minority then, with Polish, Yiddish, and Belarusian speakers being most of the population of the city. ["A 1909 official count of the city found 205,250 inhabitants, of whom 1.2 percent were Lithuanian; 20.7 percent Russian; 37.8 percent Polish;, and 36.8 percent Jewish. — Timothy Snyder, "The Reconstruction of Nations. Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus 1569–1999". Yale University Press 2003, p. 306.]

In Poland

During World War I, Vilnius — as with the rest of Lithuania — was occupied by the German Empire from 1915 until 1918. The "Act of Independence of Lithuania", that restored Lithuanian independence from any affiliation to any other nation was proclaimed in the city on February 16

In the meantime, for yet another time in its history, the city enjoyed a period of fast development. Vilnius University was reopened under the name Stefan Batory University and the city's infrastructure was improved significantly. By 1931, the city had 195,000 inhabitants, making it the fifth largest city in Poland with vibrant industries, such as Elektrit, a factory of a popular make of radio receivers. Some dispute this picture of economic growth and point out that the standard of living in Vilnius at that time was considerably lower compared to that in other parts of contemporary Lithuania.Fact|date=March 2008

World War II

Following the secret protocol of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, on September 19 1939, Vilnius was seized and annexed by the Soviet Union. There were plans to include the city and the region as a part of the Belarusian SSR, but eventually it was decided that Vilnius might be used as a way to exert significant influence on Lithuania.Fact|date=September 2007 On October 10 1939, after a Soviet ultimatum, the Lithuanian government accepted the presence of Soviet military bases in various parts of the country in exchange for restoring the city to Lithuania. On October 28 1939 the Red Army withdrew from the city to its suburbs (to Naujoji Vilnia) and Vilnius was taken over by the Lithuanian Army. A parade took place on October 29 1939 through the city center. Though the process of transferring the capital from Kaunas to Vilnius was encouraged by Soviet emissaries initiated soon after, and the whole of Lithuania was annexed by the Soviet Union in June 1940 before the transfer was completed. An illegitimate Soviet government was installed, with Vilnius as the capital of the newly created Lithuanian SSR. Up to 40,000 of the city's inhabitants were arrested by the NKVD and sent to gulags in the far eastern areas of the Soviet Union. The Soviets devastated city industries, moving the Elektrit radio factory along with a part of its labor force to Minsk in Belarus, where it was renamed the Vyacheslav Molotov Radio Factory, after Stalin's Minister of Foreign Affairs.

German Occupation

In June 1941, the city was occupied by Germany, when it invaded Lithuania as part of its campaign against the Soviet Union. Two ghettos were set up in the old town center for the large Jewish population — the smaller one of which was "liquidated" by October. The larger ghetto lasted until 1943, though its population was regularly deported in what became known as "Aktionen". A failed ghetto uprising on September 1, 1943 organized by the Fareinigte Partizaner Organizacje (the United Partisan Organization, the first Jewish partisan unit in Nazi-occupied Europe),Fact|date=June 2008 was followed by the final destruction of the ghetto. During the Holocaust about 95% of the 265,000-strong Jewish population of Lithuania was murdered by the German units and their local collaborators, many of them in Paneriai, about 10 km west of the old town centre.

In Soviet Union

In July 1944 Vilnius was taken from the Germans by the Soviet Army and the Polish Armia Krajowa (see Operation Ostra Brama). The NKVD arrested the Polish guerillas, who marched to meet them. Vilnius was again incorporated into the Soviet Union as the capital of the Lithuanian SSR shortly thereafter. Immediately after World War II, large numbers of Poles chose to leave for Poland from Soviet-occupied Lithuania. Coupled with migration of the Lithuanians into Vilnius, this development resulted in a change to the city demographics.Fact|date=March 2008

Independence

On March 11, 1990, the Supreme Council of the Lithuanian SSR announced its independence from the Soviet Union and restored the independent Republic of Lithuania. The Soviets responded on January 9 1991, by sending in troops. On January 13 during the Soviet Army attack on the State Radio and Television Building and the Vilnius TV Tower, at least fourteen civilians were killed and more than 700 were seriously injured. The Soviet Union finally recognized Lithuanian independence in August 1991.

Today

Vilnius has been rapidly transformed and the town has emerged as a modern European city. Many of its older buildings have been renovated, and a business and commercial area is being developed into the "New City Center", expected to become the city's main administrative and business district on the north side of the Neris river. This area includes modern residential and retail space, with the municipality building and a 129-metre (423') Europa Tower as its most prominent building.

In 2009 Vilnius will be the capital of European Culture. Among the initiatives promoted by Lithuania for this event, the historical centre of the city has been restored and its main monuments have been renewed. [PDFlink| [http://www.webjournal.unior.it/Dati/17/41/Articolo%20Lituania.pdf O. Niglio, "Restauri in Lituania. Vilnius Capitale della Cultura Europea 2009",] |810 KiB in "Web Journal on Cultural Patrimony", 1, 2006]

Geography

Vilnius is situated in southeastern Lithuania (coord|54|41|N|25|17|E|) at the confluence of the Vilnia and Neris Rivers. It is believed that Vilnius, like many other cities, was named after a crossing river, Vilnia.

Lying close to Vilnius is a site some claim to be the Geographical Centre of Europe.

Vilnius' non-central location can be attributed to the changing shape of the nation's borders through the centuries; Vilnius was once not only culturally but also geographically at the center of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania.

Vilnius lies 312 kilometres (194 mi) from the Baltic Sea and Klaipėda, the chief Lithuanian seaport. Vilnius is connected by highways to other major Lithuanian cities, such as Kaunas (102 km/63 mi away), Šiauliai (214 km/133 mi away) and Panevėžys (135 km/84 mi away).

The current area of Vilnius is 402 square kilometres (155 sq mi). Buildings cover 20.2% of the city and in the remaining areas, greenery (43.9%) and waters (2.1%) prevail.

Climate

The climate of Vilnius is considered as Humid Continental or Hemiboreal by Köppen climate classification. [cite journal | author=Kottek, M., J. Grieser, C. Beck, B. Rudolf, and F. Rubel | year=2006 | title= World Map of the Köppen-Geiger climate classification updated | journal=Meteorol. Z. | volume=15 | pages=259–263 | doi=10.1127/0941-2948/2006/0130] The average annual temperature is +6.1 °C (43 °F); in January the average temperature is −4.9 °C (23 °F), in July it is +17.0 °C (62.6 °F). The average precipitation is about 661 millimetres (26.0 in) per year.

Summers can be hot, with temperatures above thirty degrees Celsius throughout the day. Night-life in Vilnius is in full swing at this time of year, and outdoor bars and cafés become very popular during the daytime.

Winters can be very cold, with temperatures rarely reaching above freezing — temperatures below negative 25 degrees Celsius (-13 °F) are not unheard-of in January and February. Vilnius's rivers freeze over in particularly cold winters, and the lakes surrounding the city are almost always permanently frozen during this time of year. A popular pastime is ice-fishing, whereby fishermen drill holes in the ice and fish with baited hooks.Infobox Weather
location = Vilnius, Lithuania
single_line =Yes
metric_first=Yes
Jan_Hi_°F = 25.7
Feb_Hi_°F = 28.9
Mar_Hi_°F = 37.9
Apr_Hi_°F = 51.3
May_Hi_°F = 64.8
Jun_Hi_°F = 70
Jul_Hi_°F = 71.8
Aug_Hi_°F = 70.9
Sep_Hi_°F = 61.5
Oct_Hi_°F = 50.4
Nov_Hi_°F = 38.3
Dec_Hi_°F = 31.1
Year_Hi_°F = 50.2
Jan_Hi_°C = -3.5
Feb_Hi_°C = -1.7
Mar_Hi_°C = 3.3
Apr_Hi_°C = 10.7
May_Hi_°C = 18.2
Jun_Hi_°C = 21.1
Jul_Hi_°C = 22.1
Aug_Hi_°C = 21.6
Sep_Hi_°C = 16.4
Oct_Hi_°C = 10.2
Nov_Hi_°C = 3.5
Dec_Hi_°C = -0.5
Year_Hi_°C = 10.1
Jan_Lo_°F = 16.3
Feb_Lo_°F = 18.3
Mar_Lo_°F = 25.2
Apr_Lo_°F = 34.9
May_Lo_°F = 45.5
Jun_Lo_°F = 51.4
Jul_Lo_°F = 54.1
Aug_Lo_°F = 52.7
Sep_Lo_°F = 45.9
Oct_Lo_°F = 38.1
Nov_Lo_°F = 30.4
Dec_Lo_°F = 22.6
Year_Lo_°F = 36.4
Jan_Lo_°C = -8.7
Feb_Lo_°C = -7.6
Mar_Lo_°C = -3.8
Apr_Lo_°C = 1.6
May_Lo_°C = 7.5
Jun_Lo_°C = 10.8
Jul_Lo_°C =12.3
Aug_Lo_°C =11.5
Sep_Lo_°C =7.7
Oct_Lo_°C =3.4
Nov_Lo_°C =-0.9
Dec_Lo_°C =-5.2
Year_Lo_°C =3.4
Jan_Precip_inch = 1.61
Feb_Precip_inch = 1.49
Mar_Precip_inch = 1.53
Apr_Precip_inch = 1.81
May_Precip_inch = 2.44
Jun_Precip_inch = 3.03
Jul_Precip_inch = 3.07
Aug_Precip_inch = 2.83
Sep_Precip_inch = 2.56
Oct_Precip_inch = 2.09
Nov_Precip_inch = 2.24
Dec_Precip_inch = 2.17
Year_Precip_inch = 26.9
Jan_Precip_cm = |Jan_Precip_mm = 41
Feb_Precip_cm = |Feb_Precip_mm = 38
Mar_Precip_cm = |Mar_Precip_mm = 39
Apr_Precip_cm = |Apr_Precip_mm = 46
May_Precip_cm = |May_Precip_mm = 62
Jun_Precip_cm = |Jun_Precip_mm = 77
Jul_Precip_cm = |Jul_Precip_mm = 78
Aug_Precip_cm = |Aug_Precip_mm = 72
Sep_Precip_cm = |Sep_Precip_mm = 65
Oct_Precip_cm = |Oct_Precip_mm = 53
Nov_Precip_cm = |Nov_Precip_mm = 57
Dec_Precip_cm = |Dec_Precip_mm = 55
Year_Precip_cm = |Year_Precip_mm = 683
source =The World Meteorological Organizationcite web
url =http://www.worldweather.org/105/c00204.htm|title = en icon Weather Information for Vilnius
accessmonthday = Dec 12
accessyear =2006
language =
]
accessdate = Nov 2006

Demographics

According to the 2001 census by the Vilnius Regional Statistical Office, there were 542,287 inhabitants in the Vilnius city municipality, of which 57.8% were Lithuanians, 18.7% Poles, 14% Russians, 4.0% Belarusians, 1.3% Ukrainians and 0.5% Jews; the remainder indicated other nationalities or refused to answer.

Evolution

Demography 12col|700px|1796|1811|1818|1859|1875|1897|1909|1916|1919|1923|1931|1939
17 500|56 300|33 600|58 200|82 700|154 500|205 200|140 800|128 500|167 400|195 100|209 400
Demography 12col|700px|1941|1944|1959|1970|1979|1985|1989|2001|2003|2004|2006|2007
270 000|110 000|236 100|372 100|481 000|544 400|576 700|542 300|552 800|541 180|541 824|542 782

Tourism

Vilnius is a cosmopolitan city with diverse architecture. There are more than 40 churches in Vilnius. Restaurants, hotels and museums have sprouted since Lithuania declared independence. Like most medieval towns, Vilnius was developed around its Town Hall. The main artery, Pilies Street, links the royal palace and the Town Hall. Other streets meander through the palaces of feudal lords and landlords, churches, shops and craftsmen's workrooms. Narrow, curved streets and intimate courtyards developed in the radial layout of medieval Vilnius.

The Old Town, the historical centre of Vilnius, is one of the largest in Europe (3.6 km²). The most valuable historic and cultural sites are concentrated here. The buildings in the old town — there are nearly 1,500 — were built over several centuries, creating a splendid blend of many different architectural styles. Although Vilnius is known as a Baroque city, there are examples of Gothic (e.g. St Anne's Church), Renaissance, and other styles. The main sights of the city are Gediminas Castle and Cathedral Square, symbols of the capital. Their combination is also a gateway to the historic centre of the capital. Owing to its uniqueness, the Old Town of Vilnius was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1994. In 1995, the first bronze cast of Frank Zappa in the world was installed near the center of Vilnius with the permission of the government.

On 2007 November 10 Jonas Mekas Visual Arts Center was opened by acclaimed avant-garde film-maker Jonas Mekas. First premiere exhibition futures "The Avant-Garde: From Futurism to Fluxus".

Guggenheim-Hermitage museum will be built in Vilnius. The building is designed by Zaha Hadid. The museum will host: Guggenheim and Hermitage exhibitions, non commercial avant-garde cinema, library, museum of Lithuanian Jewish culture, collection of Jonas Mekas and Jurgis Mačiūnas.

Economy

Vilnius is the major economic centre of Lithuania and one of the largest financial centres of the Baltic states. Even though it is home to only 15% of Lithuania's population, it generates approximately 35% of Lithuania's GDP [http://www.vilnius.lt/new/en/investicijos.php] . Based on these indicators, its estimated GDP per capita, based on purchasing power parity, in 2005 is approximately $33,100, above the European Union average.

Vilnius contributed over 4.6 billion litas to the national budget in 2004. That makes about 37% of the budget. Kaunas, the second largest city, contributed only 1.5 billion. Vilnius received a return of 360 million litas in the budget, which is only 7.7% of its contribution. This disparity caused some conflicts with the central government because of Vilnius' demand for a greater share of the funds it generated.

Education

The city has many universities. The biggest are Vilnius University, Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Mykolas Romeris University and Vilnius Pedagogical University. Specialized higher schools with the university status are General Jonas Žemaitis Military Academy of Lithuania, Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre, Vilnius Academy of Fine Arts.

There is also the National M. K. Čiurlionis School of Art.

Culture

Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania has 6 912 266 physical units.In 2009 Vilnius will become the European Capital of Culture together with Linz.

Religion

:"For ecclesiastical history, see Archdiocese of Vilnius"

Vilnius is the Roman Catholic center of the country, with the main church institutions and Archdiocesan Cathedral located here. There are quite a number of active and open churches in the city, along with small enclosed monasteries and religion schools. Church architecture includes Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and Neoclassical styles, with important examples of each found in the Old Town. Vilnius is considered one of the main centers of the Polish Baroque movement in ecclesiastical architecture. Additionally, Eastern Rite Catholicism has maintained a presence in Vilnius since the Union of Brest. The Baroque Basilian Gate is part of an Eastern Rite monastery.

Also, Vilnius has been home to an Eastern Orthodox Christian presence since the 13th or even the 12th century. A famous Russian Orthodox monastery, named for the Holy Spirit, is located near the Gate of Dawn. St. Paraskeva's Orthodox Church in the Old Town is the site of the baptism of Hannibal, the great-grandfather of Pushkin, by Tsar Peter the Great in 1705.

Many Old Believers, who split from the Russian Orthodox Church in 1667, settled in Lithuania. Today a [http://ldmuziejus.mch.mii.lt/naujausiosparodos/Old_Believers.en.htm Supreme Council of the Old Believers] is based in Vilnius.

A number of Protestant and other Christian groups [ [http://www.adherents.com/adhloc/Wh_186.html Adherents.com: By Location ] ] are represented in Vilnius, most notably the Lutheran Evangelicals and the Baptists.Once widely known as "Yerushalayim De Lita" (the "Jerusalem of Lithuania"), Vilnius since the 18th century was comparable only to Jerusalem, Israel, as a world center for the study of the Torah, and for its large Jewish population. That is why one part of Vilnius was named "Jeruzalė". At the end of the 19th century, the number of synagogues in Vilnius exceeded one hundred. [ [http://www.jmuseum.lt/index.asp?DL=E&TopicID=67 The Great Synagogue of Vilnius] The Vilna Gaon Jewish State Museum] A major scholar of Judaism and Kabbalah centered in Vilnius was the famous Rabbi Eliyahu Kremer, also known as the Vilna Gaon. His students have significant influence among Orthodox Jews in Israel and around the globe. Jewish life in Vilnius was destroyed during the Holocaust; there is a memorial stone dedicated to victims of Nazi genocide located in the center of the former Jewish Ghetto — now Mėsinių Street.

The Karaim are a Jewish sect who migrated to Lithuania from the Crimea to serve as a military elite unit in the 14th century. Although their numbers are very small, the Karaim are becoming more prominent [ [http://www.euronet.nl/users/sota/karaim22.htm New Life in Karaim Communities ] ] since Lithuanian independence, and have restored their kenesa.

Islam came to Lithuania in the 14th century from Crimea and Kazan, through the Tatars. Tatars in Lithuania have maintained their religious practices: currently, about 3,000 Tatar Muslims live in Lithuania. The Lukiškės mosque of the Lithuanian Tatars was a prominent 19th century feature of suburban Vilnius, but was destroyed during the Soviet era.

The pre-Christian pagan religion of Lithuania, centered around the forces of nature as personified by deities such as Perkūnas (the Thunder God), is experiencing some increased interest.

Transport

Motorways

Vilnius is the starting point of the Vilnius-Kaunas-Klaipėda motorway that runs across Lithuania and connects the three major cities. The Vilnius-Panevėžys motorway is a branch of the Via-Baltica. Though the river Neris is navigable at this point, no regular water routes exist. Vilnius International Airport serves most Lithuanian international flights to many major European destinations. The Vilnius railway station is an important hub as well.

Public Transport

Vilnius has a well-developed public transportation system. There are over 60 bus and 20 trolleybus routes, the trolleybus network is one of the biggest in Europe. Over 250 buses and 260 trolleybuses transport about 500,000 passengers every workday. Students, elderly, and the disabled receive large discounts (up to 80%) on the tickets. A single ride ticket costs up to 1.40 litas (0,41 EUR) while monthly tickets cost 40-60 litas (14,50-17,40 EUR). The first regular bus routes were established in 1926, and the first trolleybus was introduced in 1956.

In the end of year 2007 a new electronic monthly ticket system was introduced. It is possible to buy an electronic card in shops and newspaper stands and fill it with an appropriate amount of money. The prices for the monthly e-ticket are the same as for the paper tickets. The monthly e-ticket cards are bought once and might be filled with an appropriate amount of money in various ways including the Internet. Currently the monthly e-ticket system co-exists with paper monthly tickets until August 2008 when a new system for electronic one-time tickets will be introduced. [ [http://www.vilniusticket.lt/ Vilnius public transport e-ticket system] ]

The public transportation system is dominated by the brand new low-floor Volvo and Mercedes-Benz buses as well as Solaris trolleybuses. The new Solaris vehicles (built in Poland) are 15 m long three-axle vehicles. There are also plenty of the traditional Skoda vehicles built in Czech Republic still in service, and many of these have been extensively refurbished internally. All is a result of major improvements that started in 2003 when the first brand-new Mercedes-Benz buses were bought. In 2004, a contract was signed with Volvo Buses to buy 90 brand-new [http://www.vap.lt/volvo.htm 7700 buses] over the next 3 years.Along with the official public transportation, there are also a number of private bus companies. They charge about the same as the municipal buses and sometimes follow the same routes. There are also a number of different routes, for example from various neighborhoods to the Gariūnai market. In addition there are about 400 share taxis that are usually faster but less comfortable and more expensive (3litas — 0.87 EUR) than regular buses.

There are also plans to build a rapid transit system, Vilnius Metro.Fact|date=October 2008

ister cities

Vilnius has 14 sister cities. In addition, agreements on cooperation have been signed with 16 other cities.

ubdivisions

The city of Vilnius is made up of 21 elderships that are based on neighbourhoods:
#Verkiai — includes Baltupiai, Jeruzalė, Santariškės, Balsiai, Visoriai
#Antakalnis — includes Valakampiai, Turniškės, Dvarčionys
#Pašilaičiai — includes Tarandė
#Fabijoniškės — includes Bajorai
#Pilaitė
#Justiniškės
#Viršuliškės
#Šeškinė
#Šnipiškės
#Žirmūnai — includes Šiaurės miestelis
#Karoliniškės
#Žvėrynas
#Grigiškės — a separate town included in the Vilnius city municipality
#Lazdynai
#Vilkpėdė — includes Vingis park
#Naujamiestis — includes bus and train stations
#Senamiestis (Old Town) — includes Užupis
#Naujoji Vilnia — includes Pavilnys, Pūčkoriai
#Paneriai — includes Trakų Vokė, Gariūnai
#Naujininkai — includes Kirtimai, Salininkai, Vilnius International Airport
#Rasos — includes Belmontas, Markučiai

ignificant depictions in popular culture

*Vilnius is one of the locations featured in the video game "Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon" (photographs comparing the game's locations with their real-life counterparts can be found [http://www.ghostrecon.net/html/real-locations.htm here] ). However, although some of the architecture is relatively well-represented, it has to be said that most of the map is fictional and it does not feel like a particularly accurate representation of the city of Vilnius.
*Vilnius is the birthplace of the fictional character Marko Ramius in Tom Clancy's novel "The Hunt for Red October". Fictional character Jack Ryan calls Ramius "The Vilnius Schoolmaster" because Ramius trained nearly all the Russian submarine commanders.
*In Thomas Harris' novel "Hannibal" it is revealed that serial murderer Hannibal Lecter was born just outside Vilnius.
*Robert Ludlum's "The Bourne Conspiracy", a video game for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, features an assassination mission in Vilnius.

Honors

A minor planet 3072 Vilnius discovered by Soviet astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh in 1978 is named after the city. [ [http://books.google.com/books?hl=ru&q=3072+Vilnius+1978+RS1 Dictionary of Minor Planet Names - p.253] ]

Other towns named for Vilnius

*The rural town of Wilno, Ontario, Canada was named after the Polish name for Vilnius in the 1860s. The village of Vilna, Alberta was also named for Vilnius.

ee also

* Archdiocese of Vilnius
* Cathedral Square in Vilnius
* Coat of arms of Vilnius
* Gediminas Castle
* Elektrit
* Kaziuko fair in Vilnius
* Pilies Street
* Vilnius Cathedral
* Vilnius Marathon
* Vilnius University
* List of Vilnians
* Vilna Gaon
* Vilna Ghetto

Footnotes and references

External links

* [http://www.vilnaghetto.com Chronicles of the Vilna Ghetto: wartime photographs & documents — vilnaghetto.com]
* [http://www.vilnius.lt/new/en/gidas.php Official city guide]
* [http://www.holocaustresearchproject.net/ghettos/vilnius.html Vilnius during the Holocaust]
* [http://www.vilniustransport.lt/en.php/ Vilnius Public Transport System]
* [http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=408473 Pictures of Vilnius]


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  • Vilnius — Wappen …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • VILNIUS — Capitale de la république de Lituanie, Vilnius (en lituanien Wilno; ancienn. Vilno), 590 100 habitants selon les estimations de 1993, a grandi au confluent du Néris (Vilia) et du Vilen (Vileïka); la partie centrale de la ville est construite sur… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Vilnius — the capital city of ↑Lithuania …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • Vilnius — [vil′nē əs] capital of Lithuania: pop. 579,000: Russ. name Vilna [vēl′nä; ] E [ vil′nə] …   English World dictionary

  • Vilnius — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Wilno (homonymie). Vilnius …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Vilnius — /vil nee oos /, n. a city in and the capital of Lithuania, in the SE part: formerly in the Soviet Union and earlier in Poland. 582,000. Polish, Wilno. Russian, Vilna /vyeel neuh/; Eng. /vil neuh/. * * * City (pop., 2001: 542,287), capital of… …   Universalium

  • Vilnius — Hauptstadt von Litauen; Wilna * * * Vịlnius,   deutsch Wịlna [v ], russisch Wịlnjus, polnisch Wịlno, Hauptstadt von Litauen, 80 220 m über dem Meeresspiegel, erstreckt sich im Tal und auf den Terrassen der Wilija, (2000) 578 000 Einwohner; …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Vilnius — Original name in latin Vilnius Name in other language Bilna, Bilnious, Gorad Vil njus, IVilnyusi, VIL NJUS, VNO, Vil njus, Vil no, Vil nyus, Viln , Vilna, Vilnia, Vilnias, Vilnious, Vilnis, Vilnius, Vilnjus, Vilnjs, Vilno, Vilnues, Vilnus,… …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • vilnius — 1 vilnius sm. BzF198, KŽ žr. 2 vilnis: Teip akmuo didis aba uola viduj marių esti nepakrutinama, norint ant jos didi vėjai užpuola ir vilniūs baisi ją daužo SPI50 …   Dictionary of the Lithuanian Language

  • Vilnius — Filniyūs (Arabic), Vėlnios (Samogitian), Vilna (Italian, Spanish, Slovene, Finnish, old Romanian variant), Vilne װילנע (Yiddish), Vilnius (French, Norwegian, Portuguese, Romanian, Swedish, Turkish), Viļņa (Latvian), Vilna (English until 1945,… …   Names of cities in different languages


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