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Kohtla järve attractions

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The city is located in the north-east of Estonia, in the county of Ida-Virumaa, near the Tallinn-Narva-Petersburg highway and the Tallinn-Narva railway line. The area is 68 square kilometers. It is the fifth largest and most populous city in Estonia. It consists of eight separate parts of the city: Ahtme (est. Ahtme), Järve (est. Järve), Kukruz (est. Kukruse), Oru (est. Oru), Sompa (est. Sompa), Viivikonna (est. Viivikonna), Sirgala (est. Sirgala) and Käva (est. Käva). The Ahtme part of the city is located south of the county center and consists of Central Akhtme, New Akhtme, Old Akhtme, Puru, Iidla, Tammiku and Pargitaguse. Large industrial enterprises (CHP, VKG, Nitrofert) are located in the north-west of the järve part of the city. Between Old Akhtme and the city of Johvi, Iidla's residential community is located.

Kohtla-Järve received city status in 1946. However, settlements on its territory have existed for a long time. So, the first mention of the village of Järve (there it is called Jeruius) in the Danish Land Book (English) dates back to 1241. The current part of the city of Kukruze was first mentioned also in 1241 (Kukarus), and Sompa in 1420 (Soenpe).

Probably, on the site of the present-day Kohtla-Järve, there would have never been a city if it had not been for oil shale, the deposits of which in these parts are quite significant. Figuratively speaking, oil shale is “solid oil”. The fact that this stone can burn, local residents have long known. There are legends telling how this was noticed. According to one of them, once in ancient times, shepherds, making fires, used to lay a ring of stones around them. Usually, limestone was used for this, but once they used tawny stones, of which there were many in that place. It was difficult for the shepherds to believe their eyes when they saw how hot these stones burned with firewood. According to another legend, a certain peasant built himself a bathhouse from slate. It was worth melting it, as the walls lit up - to the greatest amazement of the peasant and all neighbors.

However, for a long time, slate remained in the eyes of the local population only a strange curiosity that did not have practical significance. It was not necessary to use it as fuel, because there were enough forests around. In addition, burning shale gives off too much soot.

Seriously interested in oil shale in the second decade of the twentieth century. It is known that in 1916 the party of the Estonian slate was sent to Petrograd in order to study its properties. Studies have shown that shale is a valuable mineral that can be used both as a fuel and as a raw material for the chemical industry.

In 1919, the State Shale Industry Association was established in the Republic of Estonia. Shale was mined both underground, in mines, and in an open way, that is, on shale sections. Near the mines and open pits villages grew. In 1924, a shale oil plant was built near the Kohtla train station. Next to it began to grow a working village called Kohtla-Järve. In the mid-1930s, it included several working quarters - Käva, Vaheküla, Pavandu.

During the Second World War, the importance of the Estonian shale basin grew: Germany regarded it as a source of fuel. However, the Germans did not have time to start full-scale operation of the field.

After the war, oil shale in ever increasing quantities was required for the northwestern part of the Soviet Union. The main settlement of the shale basin received city status on June 15, 1946.

From this moment, for almost twenty years, the process of administrative unification of the surrounding settlements within the framework of Kohtla-Järve has been going on. In 1949, the villages of Kohtla and Kukruze were included in the structure of Kohtla-Järve. In 1960, it included the cities of Johvi and Ahtme, as well as the village of Sompa. In 1964, the city of Kiviõli, the village of Oru, Püssi and Viivikonna became subordinate to Kohtla-Järve. Thus, Kohtla-Järve has grown greatly, turning into a city with a unique layout, since its parts remained very scattered “islands” lying among forests, agricultural land and shale mining.

In 1991, the number of parts of Kohtla-Järve decreased, Johvi, Kiviõli and Püssi left its composition, becoming independent cities, as well as Kohtla, which received the right to the village. Currently, Kohtla-Järve consists of six (or more precisely, eight) parts: Järve (the region also includes the autonomous region of Käva), Sompa, Kukruze, Akhtme, Oru and Viivikonna (the village of Sirgala also administratively enters). The layout of the city remains very peculiar. The number of inhabitants is slightly less than 50 thousand, but two people located in Sirgala and the other in Järve — that is, both in the territory of Kohtla-Järve — can be separated by a distance exceeding 30 kilometers.

In the 1990s, the volumes of extraction and processing of oil shale decreased, however, the prospects for the continued existence of the oil shale industry remain, especially if it is possible to upgrade it to the level of the most modern technologies. In addition, the industrial culture and skills accumulated over decades, the industrial intellectual potential of the inhabitants of Kohtla-Järve offer great opportunities for the development of other non-oil shale enterprises in the city.

Parts of the city

  • Järve consists of the Old City, Ehitayate (adjacent to Kyava), and the so-called. New City (formerly Socialist region) (so-called. Sotsgorod).
    • Old city - a center for processing and researching oil shale.
    • Kyava - The industrial part, located in the south of the city of Kohtla-Järve, developed together with the Käva mine.
    • New town - center of education and culture.
  • Ahtme consists of Iidla, Tammik, Puru, Central Akhtme, Old Akhtme and New Akhtme. The sleeping area of ​​the city, in terms of population is the second district of the city. Located 2 km southwest of Johvi.
  • Kukruze - part of the city between Kohtla-Järve and Johvi within the framework of Kohtla parish. The settlement was formed after 1916, when oil shale was mined in Kukruz. Kukruze is famous for its terrikonik, which is a place of entertainment in the winter months.
  • Oru It is located 9 km east of Johvi not far from the Oru railway station, within the borders of the Toila volost. The settlement arose in connection with the construction of a peat briquette factory in 1958.
  • Sompa It is located near the Tallinn-Narva Railway, west of Jõhvi and east of the Järve part of the city within the Jõhvi parish.
  • Wiiviconna located 7 km southwest of the Vaivara train station (est.), within the boundaries of the Vaivara parish.
    • Sirgala was founded along with a shale quarry. Located east of Wiivikonna.

In addition to administrative authority, these parts of the city have in common only the production and processing of oil shale, as well as part of the infrastructure.

City of Kohtla-Järve

Kohtla-Järve - Estonia's fourth largest city (after Tallinn, Tartu and Narva), is a rather dull industrial center in the industrial region of Estonia, where oil shale is mined. This is not the most remarkable settlement in Northern Estonia, but the municipality has tried to make its historical heritage attractive to tourists. Slagging piles around the developed mines formed high hills that were grassed, landscaped and turned into ski slopes or tracks for motocross.

Video: Kohtla-Järve

Kohtla-Järve received city status just over half a century ago. However, settlements on its territory have existed for a long time. So, the first mention in the Danish land book about the village of Järve dates back to 1241 (there she is called Jeruius). The current part of the city of Kukruze was first mentioned also in 1241 (Kukarus), and Sompa - in 1420 (Soenpe).

Probably, on the site of the present-day Kohtla-Järve, there would have never been a city if it had not been for oil shale, the deposits of which in these parts are quite significant. Figuratively speaking, oil shale is “solid oil”. The fact that this stone can burn, local residents have long known. There are legends telling how this was noticed. According to one of them, once in ancient times, shepherds, making fires, used to lay a ring of stones around them. Usually, limestone was used for this, but once they used tawny stones, of which there were many in that place. It was difficult for the shepherds to believe their eyes when they saw how hot these stones burned with firewood. According to another legend, a certain peasant built himself a bathhouse from slate. It was worth melting it, as the walls lit up - to the greatest amazement of the peasant and all neighbors.

However, for a long time, slate remained in the eyes of the local population only a strange curiosity that did not have practical significance. It was not necessary to use it as fuel, because there were enough forests around. In addition, burning shale gives off too much soot.

Seriously interested in oil shale in the second decade of the twentieth century. It is known that in 1916 the party of the Estonian slate was sent to Petrograd in order to study its properties. Studies have shown that shale is a valuable mineral that can be used both as a fuel and as a raw material for the chemical industry.

In 1919, the State Shale Industry Association was established in the Republic of Estonia. Shale was mined both underground, in mines, and in an open way, that is, on shale sections. Near the mines and open pits villages grew. In 1924, a shale oil plant was built near the Kohtla train station. Next to it began to grow a working village called Kohtla-Järve. In the mid-30s, it included several working quarters - Käva, Vaheküla, Pavandu.

During the Second World War, the importance of the Estonian shale basin grew: Germany regarded it as its second most important source of fuel after the Romanian oil development. However, the Germans did not have time to start full-scale operation of the field.

After the war, oil shale in ever increasing quantities was required for the northwestern part of the Soviet Union. The main settlement of the shale basin received the status of a city. On June 15, 1946, the inhabitants of Kohtla-Järve became citizens.

From this moment, for almost twenty years, the process of administrative unification of the surrounding settlements within the framework of Kohtla-Järve has been going on. In 1949, the villages of Kohtla and Kukruze were included in the structure of Kohtla-Järve. In 1960, it included the cities of Johvi and Ahtme, as well as the village of Sompa. In 1964, the city of Kiviõli, the villages of Oru, Püssi and Viivikonna became subordinate to Kohtla-Järve. Thus, Kohtla-Järve has grown greatly, turning into a city with a unique layout, since its parts remained very scattered “islands” lying among forests, agricultural land and shale mining.

In 1991, the number of parts of Kohtla-Järve decreased, Johvi, Kiviõli and Püssi left its composition, becoming independent cities. Currently, Kohtla-Järve consists of six parts: the Järve part, Sompa, Kukruze, Ahtme, Oru and Viivikonna (the last part administratively includes the village of Sirgala). The layout of the city remains very peculiar. The number of inhabitants is slightly less than 50 thousand, however, two people, one in Sirgala and the other in the Järv area - that is, both in the territory of Kohtla-Järve - can be separated by a distance exceeding 30 kilometers. The same distance is shared by people located on the opposite outskirts of London or Paris.

In the 90s, the volumes of extraction and processing of oil shale decreased, however, the prospects for the continued existence of the oil shale industry remain, especially if it is possible to upgrade it to the level of the most modern technologies. In addition, the industrial culture and skills accumulated over decades, the industrial intellectual potential of the inhabitants of Kohtla-Järve offer great opportunities for the development of other non-oil shale enterprises in the city.

Kohtla-Järve has a little less than 50 thousand inhabitants. The largest parts of the city - Järveska (about 23 thousand inhabitants) and Akhtmeskaya (approximately 21.5 thousand inhabitants). Followed by Sompa and Oru (about 2,000 inhabitants in each part), Viiviconna (900 inhabitants) and Kukruze (750 inhabitants).

Of the number of citizens, approximately 14,700 are pensioners. Representatives of almost four dozen nationalities live in the city. About four fifths are Russian and Russian-speaking residents, one fifth of the population is represented by Estonians. Thus, the city, like neighboring Narva, Johvi and Sillamae, is predominantly Russian-speaking.

The most important areas of activity are associated with oil shale. Large enterprises include mines (there are 2 mines and 3 quarries in total)They are managed by Eesti Pylevkivi JSC, the leading enterprise in the field of shale chemistry is Viru Keemia-Group JSC, the Nitrofert chemical company, which specializes in the production of nitrogen fertilizers and is a subsidiary of the Russian company Gazprom. The local energy sector is also based on oil shale - thermal power plants that provide the city with heat operate on oil shale.

Shale museum

In the western industrial suburb of Kohtla-Nomme, there is one of the most unusual museums in the region - the Slate Museum. The industrial profile of the region is reflected in this unique museum - with tunnels, miniature mine trains and operating mechanisms. Paraffin-enriched oil shale has until recently been widely used as domestic and industrial fuel and has been a major factor in environmental pollution. In winter, visitors can ski from the well-maintained heaps and in the summer they can rent a bicycle.

There is also a climbing wall 26 meters high.

What to see in Kohtla-Järve?

The city gained fame due to the fact that it contains rich shale deposits, which is why Kohtla-Järve is considered an important industrial site of the country. But thanks to such natural features in the city, unique tourist sites are offered for tourists to see, among which the following can be listed:

    Terricon in Kukruzhaving a height of 182 m. Previously, there was a mine in which oil shale was mined, but at present it is closed. Travelers are invited to visit the Museum of Slate, which was opened in 1966. The museum is considered unique, because it allows you to familiarize yourself with the history of the mining industry and find out the facts about how the tar shale was formed. The collection has more than 27,000 exhibits. The museum presents not only objects related to slate, but also contains works of art. Great hopes are placed on the land heap as a tourist attraction, it is planned that in the future a ski resort will be located here.

Kohtla-Järve has a very unusual layout. From its founding until the 60s, the unification of nearby settlements took place. Then some of them left this structure. To date, Kohtla-Järve has six districts, but separate urban units are isolated from each other.

The central part of the city is called Socialist, which has the status cultural center Kohtla-Järve. Here are architectural buildings belonging to the Stalin period, picturesque parks are located.

In the immediate vicinity of Kohtla-Järve is located Kuremäe village, where the main architectural attraction of this region is located - Pyukhtitsky Assumption Monastery. A legend is connected with its appearance, which says that the shepherd who was near the village had a divine revelation. For several days he saw a beautiful woman wearing radiant clothes. As he tried to get closer, the vision faded. This happened near a source with holy water, and later residents found in this place the ancient icon of the Assumption of Our Lady, which is still in the monastery. A feature of this icon is that the Mother of God is depicted standing on the earth. The church was built in the 16th century, in 1891 a convent was formed. During the Soviet Union, this monastery was the only one that operated throughout its territory.

Location

Kohtla-Järve is the fifth largest settlement in Estonia. It is located in the north-eastern part of the country, in the county of Ida-Virumaa. In fact, this is an agglomeration consisting of several industrial towns, districts, namely:

  • Järve (as well as the Käva Autonomous Region) is the historical and administrative center of the city, its heart.
  • Ahtme is a large sleeping area.
  • Kukruze is one of the industrial shale producing centers, known, among other things, for the large waste dump.
  • Oru is a settlement that sprang up around a peat briquette factory.
  • Sompa is a village of a rural type.
  • Viiviconna.

City `s history

People lived on the site of the current city for a long time. The first written records of the villages of Järve and Kukruz date back to 1241, and about Sompa to 1420.

The history of modern Kohtl-Järve is inextricably linked with oil shale. In this region, rich deposits of this mineral, which is often called solid oil, have been discovered. At the beginning of the 20th century, the country's leadership became interested in a potential source of fuel and raw materials for the chemical industry.

In 1919, oil shale production was organized both in the mines and in the open pit. Mining villages grew around, and in 1924, a plant producing shale oil appeared near the Kohtla railway station, and next to it was a village called Kohtla-Järve.

During the Second World War and the first post-war years, the importance of oil shale for industry increased, and the mining village increased. On June 15, 1946, Kohtla-Järve received city status.

Until the 1990s, the city grew, it included all new villages. In 1991, Kohtla-Järve decreased due to the fact that part of the districts were withdrawn from its structure.

Attractions with photos

There are few tourist attractions in the mining town. In addition to the unique Estonian mine museum, an inquisitive tourist can visit the following places:

  • Water tower. One of the symbols of Kohtla-Järve, according to the idea of ​​the builders, was to be in the form of a mining lamp. Located at the entrance from Narva.
  • Waterfall Valaste. The highest waterfall in Estonia is located in the vicinity of the city. The best time to visit is spring, when the waterfall is most full, and also winter, when the jets of water freeze, forming bizarre patterns.
  • Turpsal Mill and Manor. Located at the entrance, the manor was already known in 1497 and belonged to one of the oldest clans in Estonia - the von Paikul family.
  • Kukruze Manor in the homonymous district. An old manor of the von Tol family, built in different architectural styles.

Turpsal Mill and Manor:

Kukruze Manor in the homonymous area:

Population size

According to 2013 data, the population of the city was about 36.5 thousand people, but it is gradually decreasing. The most densely populated areas:

Almost 40% of the population are pensioners.

The city’s economy is closely linked to the extraction and processing of oil shale. Kohtla-Järve is sometimes called the Estonian Donbass. Unfortunately, in recent years, the economic situation in the city has been deteriorating due to a decrease in the need for this mineral. Mines are closing, and factories are cutting jobs.

Currently, 1 mine and 1 quarry is operating in the city under the control of the state joint-stock company Esti Energy.

Other large enterprises in the industry are Viru Keyemia Group JSC and Nitrofert chemical fertilizer plant.

Infrastructure

Due to geographical features The city has a well-established network of public passenger transport. Communication between the districts is carried out by buses and minibuses.

Among the objects of the social sphere are:

  • 6 secondary and 8 elementary schools,
  • 3 vocational schools,
  • Virumaa College of Tallinn University of Technology,
  • 6 hospitals with outpatient clinics,
  • there are 34 sports facilities
  • Orthodox Church.

You can stay for a few days at the hotel:

  1. Hotel Alex,
  2. Virumaa Hostel,
  3. Valaste Guest house and Camping.

There are cafes and shopping centers.

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