Togliatti (until 1964 - Stavropol-on-Volga) is industrial center of the Samara region, the second-large city of the region and the center of business activity.
The city was founded in 1373. Then Vasily Nikitich Tatishev, a politician, historian and friend of Peter the Great, was sent to the mid-Volga region to subjugate the local Kalmyk population and convert them to Christianity. In this he was successful and the fortress that he originally built grew into the thriving city of Stavropol-on-Volga (The word ‘Stavropol’ comes from Greek and means ‘City of the Holy Cross’).
The city endured the rebirth in 1950, when the construction of Hydroelectric Power Station named after Lenin began. At that time Stavropol has got to a flooding zone of Kuybyshev water basin and has been moved on 18 km on the left bank of Volga. The city has been built up anew completely, with just small elements from old Stavropol. Nevertheless, Togliatti is included now into the federal list of historical cities of Russia.
In 1964 the city was renamed after Italian communist Palmiro Togliatti. Later, in 1966, the new life of the city began. At that time the “AvtoVAZ” factory was constructed and Togliatti became one of the industrial centers of Russia. The first car "Zhiguli" was produced at the factory in 1970.
Today Togliatti is the biggest Russian city not being the capital of Russian Federation subject. The territory of Togliatti is about 314.8 km2. The city population is 721.6 thousand persons (it is the 17th place in Russia). Togliatti is administratively divided into 3 districts: Komsomolsky, Central and Autozavodsky. All of them are surrounded by natural woods. In culture and leisure park of Komsomolsky district there isn't artificially planted trees.
Togliatti has a transport connection with Samara, Syzran and Moscow through the railway, and with Caspian, Black, Baltic, White and Azov seas through the waterway. Also the federal highway Moscow-Chelyabinsk runs through the city. The largest in the Volga region international airport "Kurumoch" is located 58.5 km away from Togliatti. The distance from Tolyatti to Samara makes 88 km, to Moscow - 985 km, to St.-Petersburg - 1702 km.
The city economy is based on the large chemical and engineering enterprises, such as: AvtoVAZ, GM- AvtoVAZ, TogliattiAzot, KuybyshevAzot, Phosphor, and Togliattikauchuk. Food processing and consumer goods industries are also highly developed in Togliatti.
The city has a number of educational institutions of different types and directions. The biggest institution of higher education in Togliatti is Togliatti State University, which trains specialists in many fields. Besides, there are many branches of the Moscow, St.-Petersburg and Samara universities in the city. Also Institute of ecology of the Volga pool of the Russian Academy of Science and Togliatti institute of technical creativity and patenting function here.
Togliatti has developed sports infrastructure. Sportsmen and sport clubs of Togliatti are well known far outside the city. Togliatti is the birthplace of many European and world champions. The road-circuit races championship of Russia is annually spent in Togliatti. The sportsmen from Togliatti participate in the international competitions in such disciplines as hockey, speedway, karate, sports gymnastics, boxing and sailing. The ice-hockey team "Lada" is one of the strongest teams of Russia.
Cultural life of Togliatti is widely presented by numerous theaters ("Koleso", "Dilizhans", "Secret", Youth drama theater, puppet theater "Pilgrim" etc.), palaces of culture, cinemas, museums (Togliatti museum of local history, Museum of historical and cultural heritage, Technical museum of "AvtoVAZ" etc.) and museum complexes, city art gallery, philharmonic society, modern exhibition complexes, a great number of libraries, symphonic and jazz orchestras. The film club "Coliseum" functions also in Togliatti. It promotes underground films not going on the general release in Russia.
Togliatti is also the city of festivals. Many festivals well known throughout the country are spent in the city. The most popular among them is the festival of an author's song named after Valery Grushin. It is held annually near to the city on Mastryukovsky lakes.
Twin-cities of Tolyatti: Wolfsburg (Germany), Flint (USA), Kazanlyk (Bulgaria), Loyang (China).
Foreign cities-partners: Colmar (France), Nadkanizha (Hungary).
City Day is celebrated in Togliatti on first weekend of June.