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But as the frontier receded and its military importance diminished, the town fell into lethargy.For that time Omsk became a major center of the Siberian exile.The pinnacle of development for pre-revolutionary Omsk was the Siberian Exposition of Agriculture and Industry in 1910.Popularity of the World Fairs contributed to the image of Omsk as the "Chicago of Siberia".Omsk received new life as a result of World War II.Because it was both far from the fighting and had a well-developed infrastructure, Omsk provided a perfect haven for much of the industry evacuated away from the frontlines in 1941. The Kirov Factory and Omsk Transmash design bureau (KBTM) produced T-80 tanks from the 1970s, and were responsible for the BTR-T, TOS-1, and the prototype Black Eagle tank. In the 1950s, following the development of the oil and natural-gas field in Siberia, an oil-refining complex was built, along with an entire "town of oil workers", expanding Omsk northward along the Irtysh.

River-port facilities handle both passengers and freight, giving the city access to navigating the extensive waterways of the Irtysh and Ob River.

The city has an elevation of 87 meters (285 ft) above mean sea level at its highest point.

Omsk is an important railroad hub, and is the junction point for the northern and southern branches of the Trans-Siberian Railway.

Omsk has a humid continental climate characterized by dramatic swings of weather.

Average daily temperatures, taken over the past three decades, are 20 °C (68 °F) for July and −17 °C (1 °F) for January, although temperatures can reach 40 °C (104 °F) in the summer and drop to −45 °C (−49 °F) in the winter.

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