The new entrance to the Hermitage museum, which will lead from Palace Square through the Great Courtyard of the Winter Palace, is planned to be opened to the public in May, in time for St. Petersburg's 300th anniversary celebrations. A separate entrance is planned for special groups, including foreigners. The interiors of this entrance have already been redecorated.
The opening of the new entrances into the Hermitage is part of the 'A new entrance for visitors to the Hermitage' project, which is estimated to cost over USD 7 million. Alexei Bogdanov, the deputy operations manager of the museum, said that the reconstruction work takes into account the needs of disabled visitors. Special ramps and lifts have been put in for the disabled, as well as specially equipped toilets.