So, from July 1, 2012, the territories of the Moscow region, selected and determined last year, officially joined Moscow..
The presentation of the project for the accession of new lands to the capital took place on July 11, 2011, the project was immediately named the most ambitious and large-scale in the history of the city, as it increased the area of Moscow by 2.4 times.
The accession was initiated by Dmitry Medvedev, who was then the country’s president..
During the year, the authorities were deciding exactly how the new lands would be managed, how the newly created metropolitan districts would be named, what exactly would be built in the new territories, and so on..
However, even now, when New Moscow has officially joined the Old Moscow, there is no need to talk about the final decision on the development of territories, there is an active discussion of plans, many of which may still change dramatically. Let’s try to figure out exactly how New Moscow will be used, and what significant objects may appear on its territory.
Moscow without officials
Back in the summer of last year, one of the main goals of joining the capital of a vast section of the Moscow region was called the need to transfer numerous ministries and departments from Old Moscow, as well as other state structural divisions. That is, this territory was supposed to become the new location of the government, and the historical center got rid of bureaucratic cars with traditional flashing lights and, accordingly, many problems with transport links.
In New Moscow, it was planned to build a large federal center, where the Presidential Administration, the General Prosecutor’s Office, the Government Office, the Investigative Committee, the Accounts Chamber and all ministries would move..
The picture “Moscow without officials” was very attractive, since today numerous state structures are not in close proximity to each other, but often in different districts of the capital. It came to the point that if an official from any ministry needs to visit the building of the State Duma, then he has to write out a local business trip, Elena Panina, Deputy Chairman of the State Duma for the construction of structures and buildings, recently said.
Elena Vladimirovna Panina
According to Panina, the problem of communication between individual state structures can be solved only by a single administrative center, where the courts, ministries, and specialized departments, and the government, and the presidential administration will be located nearby..
The project for the construction of a single federal center is supported by the mayor of the now Greater Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin. According to him, “now hundreds of buildings of the government apparatus and departments are scattered throughout Moscow, it is impossible to drive around the Ministry of Transport and the State Duma, and the buildings themselves, many of which are classified as monuments of architecture and history, are used ineffectively”.
In this regard, in April of this year, Medvedev instructed to find a suitable place for the construction of the Federal Center on the territory of New Moscow.
And such a place was chosen by the Federation Council and the State Duma – just five kilometers from the Moscow ring road, in a village with a symbolic name for the future administrative and government center – Kommunarka. This plot of 300 hectares is located behind the Gazoprovod settlement and now belongs to the structures of Senator Vladimir Moshkov, but the current owner, according to government officials, is ready to simply donate land to the government. The senator himself calls the provision of a plot of 300 hectares in the near Moscow region as a gift to the state as only one of the options, preferring to remain silent about other opportunities and prospects. If the fact of donating land turns out to be a reality, it can become an excellent example for other officials who own real estate, and a real example of unprecedented altruism..
The advantages of the site include the proximity to the Kaluga highway and the capital itself.
Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin even suggested making adjustments to the plan for the construction of new metro lines and extending the line to the village of Kommunarka to ensure transport accessibility of the new administrative center
It is planned that an extensive complex of office buildings will be erected for government agencies, the total area of which will reach 3.5 million square meters. The preliminary cost of the construction of the Federal Center has also been announced – 350 billion rubles, that is, about 100 thousand rubles per “square”. The completion date for construction has also been determined – in 2016 the Federal Center may start work.
It would seem that the issue has been practically resolved, it remains to wait for a firm “yes” from the president, and the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Economic Development have already started working out all the stages of officials moving to a new place of work..
However, not all so simple. First, the officials themselves are far from enthusiastic about the upcoming changes. When asked by a journalist from the Kommersant newspaper, one of the employees of the Ministry of Justice asked him not to “frighten” with such rumors, and then remarked that in case of resettlement outside the Moscow Ring Road, the ministries would be left without specialists, and “sending people to settlements is ill-considered and impractical.” Of course, it is highly doubtful that resettlement will cause mass layoffs in the bureaucratic environment, lose warm places only because of the need to travel to work elsewhere – literally a few can take such a step. However, the very reaction of a government official is quite remarkable. Interestingly, the Ministry of Justice is ready to consider the option of moving to St. Petersburg following the example of the Constitutional Court, rather than moving outside the Moscow Ring Road.
Three main factions of the State Duma are also against the move, and even the representatives of United Russia, who unexpectedly united with ideological opponents – Fair Russia and the Communist Party of the Russian Federation. Parliamentarians insist on the construction of a new building for the State Duma in Old Moscow, for example, in the area of Kutuzovsky Prospekt. The only one who decided to support Medvedev’s initiative was Vladimir Zhirinovsky, who noted that it would be better to work outdoors, and the Moscow smog has a bad effect on health. However, the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia could have made his statement simply “in defiance” of the rest.
Vladimir Zhirinovsky: “The parliamentary center should have a favorable environment. Otherwise, power itself shortens life. And there are forests, fields, good air “.
The indicated cost of the construction of the Federal Center also raises serious doubts. According to a source in the presidential administration, only the construction of office buildings for officials will cost $ 10 billion, another $ 30-40 billion will have to be spent on the construction of underground parking and other infrastructure, so that the total investment may reach $ 50 billion.
Dmitry Peskov, the president’s secretary, clarified that in the end it will be about a percentage of the country’s GDP, and the project itself turned out to be much more expensive than previously thought.
Proponents of the move retort that as a result, the construction of the Federal Center will not cost the Russian budget a dime – it is possible to attract credit funds, which will then be returned through the sale or lease of numerous buildings that officials will vacate. Since all state structures are now located in the center of the capital, such a prospect seems quite real, because the cost of prestigious real estate will reach a truly transcendental value.
Thus, the mass relocation of officials from Old Moscow may not take place at all until the president has made a final decision, but the high cost of the project and the active resistance of the officials themselves may make the prospect of Moscow, freed from state structures, very vague..
By the way, the presidential administration has recently increased by 200 employees, so if the project for the construction of the Federal Center is not approved, it will be necessary to solve the problem with their placement by erecting or reconstructing another additional building in Old Moscow.
If the resettlement of officials can be called one of the most significant and resonant issues of the development of New Moscow, then the rest of the problems and tasks of the development of the newly annexed territories, although not so vigorously discussed in the press, can have no less impact on the fate of the entire capital.
What has already become a reality? In New Moscow, two administrative districts appeared – Novomoskovsky, which borders directly on the Western Administrative District, and Troitsky, which included lands located further west of the capital..
The CJSC itself also became much larger – its territory was joined by: a separate site “Rublevo-Arkhangelskoye”, a separate site “Horse-breeding plant, VTB”, which became part of the Kuntsevo district, as well as a separate site “Skolkovo”, which joined the municipal district Mozhaisky.
The Moscow government has a new Department for the Development of New Territories of the City of Moscow, headed by Vladimir Fedorovich Zhidkin. It is this department that will deal with construction issues in new territories, issue permits for construction, consider projects and accept new objects..
The fact that for the residents of New Moscow, who previously lived in the Moscow region, life will change for the better, none of the experts even doubts. The authorities have already announced a 30% increase in the payroll in health care and education, so that doctors and teachers will definitely receive a large salary, which rises to the capital level. In addition, local residents will receive benefits from Moscow, that is, higher than in the region, social benefits. Utilities tariffs in New Moscow are still planned to remain at the same level, and residents will not have to re-register their, previously considered Moscow region, real estate.
But as for the residents of Old Moscow, they may not notice any changes in the near future. Yes, according to experts, the population density in the megalopolis has more than halved – from 10.7 thousand people per square kilometer to 4.6 thousand people. However, these are just numbers, in reality, the number of residents in the Central District has not yet become smaller, and in the near future there will hardly be a flow of migrants to new territories..
Sergei Sobyanin: “Together with the Moscow Region, we ordered a concept for the development of the Moscow agglomeration, in which the best urbanists and the best architects of the world participate. I hope that by autumn we will receive their solutions. “.
According to Sergei Sobyanin, there will be three zones in New Moscow: the first – dense urban development, which will occupy the Solntsevo-Butovo area, the second – the so-called zone of sparing development, where primarily kindergartens, residential complexes surrounded by green adjoining territory, polyclinics and other social facilities, while the third zone will remain recreational. The mayor of the capital stressed that the government is not planning to massively build up New Moscow and turn it into a typical metropolis. At the same time, the mayor does not deny that already today permits have been issued for the construction of 7 million square meters of housing on the newly annexed territories, and the general development plan envisages the construction of over 30 million “squares” of new residential areas. At the same time, private construction companies will build only residential buildings – this is their profit from the sale of apartments. According to HSE professor Alexei Skopin, it is not yet known who will build all the infrastructure necessary for new residential areas – roads, social facilities, conduct communications in lands that were previously considered agricultural land, and so on. The government of the capital has no money for this at the moment, and business will not invest in such “unprofitable” construction.
By the way, until 2025, the Moscow government received an advantage when buying land in new territories, so the mayor’s office will manage the plots for construction and the withdrawal of allotments from agricultural land.
In addition, the government of the capital plans to gradually move all industrial zones of Old Moscow to new territories, which will free up significant areas of the area – more than 18 thousand hectares in the administrative districts. These sites can be used in different ways – from the construction of residential complexes to the construction of universities and libraries. The withdrawal of industrial enterprises from the city center, according to the authorities, will undoubtedly be followed by the relocation of the labor force – in order not to travel to the duty station through the entire city, Muscovites will have to move to New Moscow, where by that time there will already be housing in the required quantity. It is believed that the outflow of the population from the city center to new territories can reach 2.5 million people, at least the government is now considering options for the development of New Moscow with just such a prospect..
Currently, a competition for projects for the development of a new territory is being held, in which only experienced teams of architects who have already worked on such large-scale projects participate. The competition, which will last until September 2012, was attended by both Russian and foreign specialists from France, the United States, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and China. The works will be accepted by a special commission and the chief architect of the capital.
According to representatives of the mayor’s office, the experience of expanding Paris will be taken as a model for the development of New Moscow..
So far, the leader among the competitive works is the project proposed by the Russian architect Andrey Chernikhov. He is the only one who paid more attention not to the development of new territories, but to the development of the Old City, in particular, the vacated industrial zones, the use of buildings of state structures and the solution of the transport problem..
In autumn 2012, when the winner of the project competition will be determined, plans for the development of New Moscow and the development of old territories will become more obvious and realistic. Now we can only say with confidence that large-scale construction will require no less large investments, and the residents of the Old City are unlikely to feel in the near future that the capital has become much larger.