Subdivisions of Kyiv
History of subdivision
The first known formal subdivision of Kyiv dates to 1810 when the city was subdivided into 4 parts: Pechersk, Starokyiv, and the first and the second parts of Podil. In 1833-1834 according to Tsar Nicholas I's decree, Kyiv was subdivided into 6 police districts; later being increased to 10. As of 1917, there were 8 district councils (Duma), which were reorganized by Pavlo Skoropadskyi into 17 raions. In 1924 bolsheviks reorganized them into the bigger six party-administrated districts with various sub-districts under Hryhoriy Hrynko administration. Districts of the city that start with the letter "D" are located on the left bank of Dnieper and until 1927 were part of Chernigov Governorate with Darnytsia being the first to be incorporated within the city limits that year.
Over the Soviet time, as city was expanding, the number of districts was gradually increasing. The districts has been also commonly named after Soviet party leaders, and as political situation was changing and some leaders were overturned by the other, so district names were also changing.
The last district reform took place in 2001 when the number of districts was decreased from 14 to 10.
Under Oleksandr Omelchenko (mayor from 1999 to 2006), there were further plans for the merger of some districts and revision of their boundaries, and the total number of districts had been planned to be decreased from 10 to 7. With the election of the new mayor-elect (Leonid Chernovetskyi) in 2006, these plans were conducted.
Districts of Kyiv
The last Kyiv district reorganization took place in 2001, and currently Kyiv districts are:
- Darnytskyi District (Дарницький район)
- Desnianskyi District (Деснянський район; after the Desna river)
- Dniprovskyi District (Дніпровський район; after the Dnieper river)
- Holosiivskyi District (Голосіївський район)
- Obolonskyi District (Оболонський район)
- Pecherskyi District (Печерський район)
- Podilskyi District (Подільський район)
- Shevchenkivskyi District (Шевченківський район; after Taras Shevchenko)
- Solomianskyi District (Солом’янський район)
- Sviatoshynskyi District (Святошинський район)
Most of the districts are named after respective historical neighborhoods of the city.
- Zaliznychny (April 9, 1938 - October 2001), most of it became the Solomianskyi District
- Zhovtnevy (~1920s - October 2001), raion was created on the territory of Shuliavka that became famous for the Uprising of 1905, in 1938 khutor Vidradny was incorporated within the raion, later became the Solomianskyi District
- Minsk (? - March 3, 1975), renamed into Obolon Raion
- Starokyiv ( - October 2001), merged with Sovietsky to form Shevchenkivskyi District
- Sovietsky ( - October 2001), merged with Starokyiv to form Shevchenkivskyi District
- Leningrad (April 12, 1973 - October 2001), formed out parts of Zhovtnevy, Sovietsky, and Shevchenko, later renamed into Sviatoshyn Raion
- Shevchenko (prior to 2001)
- Rakhiv-Sviatoshyn (January 1924 - April 1973), included Sviatoshyn sub-raion, later became Leningrad
- Sviatoshyn (1918 - 1924), created by an administrative reform of Pavlo Skoropadskyi, was incorporated as a sub-raion into Rakhiv-Sviatoshyn
- Moscow (1921 - October 2001), reorganized as Holosiivskyi District
- Kharkiv (? - 2004), became part of Darnytskyi District
The Right Bank and the Left Bank
The natural first level of subdivision of the city is into the Right Bank and the Left Bank of the Dnieper River (a few large islands belong to the left-bank raions).
The Right Bank (Ukrainian: Правий Берег, Pravyi Bereh), located on the western side of the river, contains the older portions of the city, as well as the majority of Kyiv's business and governmental institutions.
The eastern Left Bank (Ukrainian: Лівий Берег, Livyi Bereh), incorporated into the city only in the twentieth century, is predominantly residential. There are large industrial and green areas in both the Right Bank and the Left Bank.
The terms "Right Bank" and, especially, "Left Bank" are recognized in the names of Kyiv's infrastructure, e.g. "Livoberezhna" Metro station.
Residents widely recognize a system of the non-formal historical neighborhoods. Such neighborhoods count in dozens, however, constituting a kind of hierarchy, since most of them have lost their distinctive topographic limits.
The names of the oldest neighborhoods go back to the Middle Ages, and sometimes pose a great linguistic interest. The newest whole-built developments bear numeric designations or residential marketing names.
Most notable informal historical neighborhoods of Kyiv include:
Right Bank (west):
Left Bank (east):
Lypky and Zvirynets of the Pecherskyi Raion are the most expensive areas to live. Koncha-Zaspa is arguably the most interesting neighborhood name dating back to the times of Kyivan Rus. A local legend explaining the name of a locality states the Rus warriors who felt asleep (zaspaly) during their watch at the outpost were killed (koncheni) by Golden Horde invaders. Koncha-Zaspa is now a prestigious area too.
Practical orientation patterns
Another useful pattern of city division is the Kyiv Metro system. However, metro lines do not cover significant parts of Kyiv, making such orientation very approximate (but easy for newcomers). Sometimes, the system of elektrychka train stops are used for the same purpose.
Names of well-known shopping malls, restaurants, night clubs are used for orientation purposes as well.
The full informal set of addresses in Kyiv (used, for example, in real estate advertising) would include:
- Formal raion
- Historical neighborhood
- Nearest metro station or train stop
- Formal address