Pyramiden, originally a Swedish coal mining attempt, named after the pyramid-shaped mountain (936 m) above the settlement, was bought up by the Soviet Union and was the only settlement of Spitsbergen, which was not destroyed during World War II. After the war, it was therefore here, where Soviet mining started again, and also the Soviet consulate in Spitsbergen was based here for some years. Almost everything visible in Pyramiden today is built after World War II and Pyramiden had the reputation of being the most pleasant of the Soviet settlements to live in for the workers from Ukraine and Russia. Population reached up to about 1000 persons, more than Longyearbyen at that time - and the urban architecture lets the place seem even bigger - a strange deserted island of civilisation in the middle of arctic wilderness.
Svalbard is an archipelago in the Arctic, constituting the northernmost part of Norway.The islands were first utilized as a whaling base in the 17th and 18th centuries, after which they were abandoned. Coal mining started at the beginning of the 20th century, and several permanent communities were established. The Spitsbergen Treaty of 1920 recognizes Norwegian sovereignty, and the 1925 Svalbard Act made Svalbard a full part of the Kingdom of Norway. This act also established Svalbard as a free economic zone and a demilitarized zone. The Norwegian Store Norske and the Russian Arktikugol are the only mining companies remaining on the islands. Research and tourism have become important supplementary industries. Two major research facilities are the University Centre in Svalbard and the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. No roads connect the settlements; instead snowmobiles, aircraft and boats serve inter-community transport. Svalbard Airport, Longyear serves as the main gateway to the rest of Europe.The archipelago features an Arctic climate, although with significantly higher temperatures than other areas at the same latitude. The flora take advantage of the long period of midnight sun to compensate for the polar night. Svalbard is a breeding ground for many seabirds, and also features polar bears, reindeer and marine mammals. Seven national parks and twenty-three nature reserves cover two-thirds of the archipelago, protecting the largely untouched, yet fragile, nature. Sixty percent of the archipelago is glacier, and the islands feature many mountains and fjords.source: wikipedia