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High-Rise to Lose Builders' Penthouses

Dom na Mosfilmovskoi's large penthouses, intended for the co-owners of Don-Stroi, will be demolished, in line with orders from city authorities to reduce the height of the building.

Dom na Mosfilmovskoi is an elite housing high-rise with two towers of different sizes connected with a middle section. Don-Stroi started construction in 2004 and planned to finish it this year. But a City Hall group established to combat illegal construction found that the building was much taller than stated in its designs, and called for the violations to be corrected.

The company recently announced that it would shorten the tower from 213 meters to 192 meters to comply with the authorities' requests, but a definite plan for tearing down floors has not been agreed upon, a spokesperson for Don-Stroi Invest said. And it is not yet clear how the company will deal with those who have already purchased apartments that will be demolished. "We will find a solution that will satisfy all sides," the spokesperson said.

Five floors of housing, where 30 apartments have already been bought, will have to be demolished so the height does not exceed 192 meters, a consultant for the project told Vedomosti.

But if floors are torn down, the facade may start to collapse, said Sergei Skuratov, the building's architect. If only the penthouses are affected, the last floor of housing will end at exactly 192 meters, but there must be at least another 12 meters for technical reasons, he said. A source in the Mayor's Office told Vedomosti that the floors with penthouses will be torn down.

Don-Stroi founders and co-owners Maxim Blazhko and Dmitry Zelenov had planned to occupy these top-most floors, Vedomosti has learned.

A source close to Blazhko told Vedomosti that a two-story penthouse atop Dom na Mosfilmovskoi is owned by the businessman. This was confirmed by the consultant and one of the managers of the company.

At Blazhko's request, Skuratov increased the height of the top-most floors, thanks to which the penthouse became two-storied and the building grew 11 meters, Blazhko wrote in his blog on the web site Snob. The top floors were reserved for Blazhko and Zelenov, said a source close to Don-Stroi shareholders. Blazhko's penthouse was to be 1,500 square meters, and Zelenov's was to be 1,000 square meters, but those accommodations have not been paid for.

The price per square meter in such a penthouse could cost $9,000 to $10,000, said Alexander Ziminsky, director of elite real estate at Penny Lane Realty.

Builders often leave the penthouses for themselves in Moscow, said Yekaterina Tein, a partner at Chesterton.

The owners of Capital Group have penthouses in their buildings, said a consultant for the company. The most expensive penthouse, a 500-square-meter dwelling at 6 Granatny Pereulok, was purchased by one of Inteko's executives, said one of the builders. Penthouses there go for $40,000 to $50,000 per square meter.

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