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Mayor Says Moskvich Facility Not Being Used as Planned

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin is proposing to pass to investigators material from a review of the Moskvich innovation center, whose territory is not being used according to its designation. The mayor also ordered that the head of the small state company responsible for the site be fired.

City authorities plan to create an innovation center on the territory of the former Moskvich factory, which is known by its Russian acronym AZLK. On an earlier tour of the southeast section of the city, where AZLK is located, Sobyanin criticized the speed at which the innovation space at Moskvich is coming on line.

"I was at the Moskvich innovation development area not long ago and saw empty spaces where nothing is being made. I propose that the results of the review [of the site] be sent to the law enforcement bodies," the mayor said Friday.

The review showed that over the past few years space on the territory, which amounts to about 300,000 square meters, was rented out for use as warehouses and offices.

"There is a bathhouse there, a sauna and some sleeping areas. It's hard to do innovative development in such an environment," Sobyanin said.

Alexander Yuzvik, general director of Stroiexpokom, the small state firm responsible for the innovation development, told the mayor during his earlier visit to the innovation development that there are plans to set up a machine shop in the future to make composite materials at the site.

There will be no housing or business centers built on the site of the ZiL plant, Russia's oldest carmaker, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said, Vedomosti reported. "We will devote the entire territory to high-tech production. … It should be ecological, with high added value, so there will be jobs for Muscovites," Sobyanin said during a visit to the plant Friday. The ZiL plant opened in 1916. Until 1919, it made trucks for the Italian Fiat company. The first Soviet trucks were manufactured there in 1924. Today it makes the ZiL-5301.

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