Real Estate News
Moscow remains over-populated
The average size of residential property per Moscow resident is currently about 19 sq meters, compared with 35 sq meters on average in Europe and 65 meters in the United States, the business daily Kommersant reported. According to the report, it will take 15 years to increase that figure to at least 22 sq meters. Technically, the existing housing capacity could be doubled if residential buildings are constructed on the sites of industrial zones within city limits and five-story “Khrushchevka” buildings, but that would present an unsurpassable challenge for the city’s infrastructure. Meanwhile, the residential situation in the country’s other major cities is better than in the capital. For instance, for St Petersburg, which has a population of 4.9 million people, compared with Moscow’s 11.5 million, the average residential property figure is 22.4 sq meters per resident, which corresponds to the national average.
City to privatize hotel assets
Moscow authorities are planning to partially privatize the early 1950s building which currently houses the Hilton Leningradskaya, Natalya Sergunina, head of the city government’s property department was quoted as saying by the wire service RIA Novosti, adding that the city owns a 30% share in the building and is ready to completely pull out. The building, located near Komsomolskaya Metro station, is one of the “Seven Sisters” skyscrapers built in the late 1940s and early 1950s in Stalinist neoclassical style. The evaluation process is to begin this autumn, after which the city’s share in the building will be put up for sale. According to Sergunina, the city government also plans to sell its minority share in OAO Gostinichnaya Kompaniya. However, the evaluation of that holding could be difficult, as the fate of the company’s most valuable asset, the plot of land on which the demolished hotel Rossiya used to be located, is uncertain.
Moscow’s construction capacities insufficient
The city government is prepared to take out substantial construction contracts, but the existing capacities are not sufficient, the business daily Vedomosti reported. According to the report, construction capacities shrank as labour and some companies left the market originally due to the economic downturn and later because of uncertainty around many development projects in the city under the new Moscow government. Meanwhile, city authorities are optimistic, planning to invest 429 billion roubles into construction projects in the capital in 2012, 446 billion roubles in 2013 and 476 billion roubles in 2014.
Reconstruction planned in the city centre
Rostovskaya Embankment and Plushchikha Street in the centre are to undergo major reconstruction as part of the city’s attempt to improve the traffic situation in Moscow, the wire service RIA Novosti reported. As part of the reconstruction works, the embankment and the street, located near Smolenskaya Metro station, will be widened to be able to accommodate more traffic, Alexander Kuzmin, the city’s chief architect, was quoted as saying by RIA. The reconstruction and broadening of the existing transport arteries is the centrepiece of a plan aimed at improving the city’s traffic situation and adopted by Moscow’s new government under mayor Sergei Sobyanin.