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Vorkuta(vərko͞otä`), city (1989 pop. 116,000), Komi Republic, NE European Russia, above the Arctic Circle. It is the industrial center of the Pechora coal basin. Founded in 1932 as the site of large Soviet forced-labor camps, Vorkuta became a city in 1942. Some of the camps were still being used in the 1980s, although they were reportedly dissolved after Stalin's death.
a city in the Komi ASSR. It is located 160 km north of the Arctic Circle, in the Bol’shaia Zemlia tundra, on the Vorkuta River. It has a railroad station. Population, 90,000 (1970). Vorkuta is a major center of coal extraction in the Pechora Coal Basin. Industry is represented by a lumber combine, machine plants, machine-repair plants, and building-materials plants (cement, housing construction, reinforced-concrete products, brick). There is a poultry farm. The city has a nursery for decorative plants and trees and a large hothouse farm. Education and cultural institutions include the Pechora Coal Scientific Research Institute, a branch of the Leningrad Mining Institute, a mining technicum, a medical school, drama and puppet theaters, and a television station. Vorkuta was founded in 1931 in connection with the beginning of coal extraction. It was a settlement prior to becoming a city in 1943. On Dec. 28, 1970, the city was awarded the Order of the Red Banner of Labor.
REFERENCEUshpik, N. G. Vorkuta. Syktykvar, 1964.
a river in Nenets National Okrug; Arkhangelsk Oblast, RSFSR; and the Komi ASSR. Right tributary of the Usa River (Pechora basin). Length, 182 km. Basin area, 4,550 sq km. Its source is in the spurs of the Northern Urals, in the Bol’shoe Vorkuta-Khasyrei-Ty Lake. The Vorkuta basin has 2,000 lakes and many swamps. The river is fed by snow and rain. The mean annual discharge in the middle course is 43.4 cu m per sec. The river freezes in the middle of October, and the ice breaks up between late May and early June. The Vorkuta is used to supply water to the Vorkuta coal fields. The city of Vorkuta is located on the river.