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City to Landscape Vacant Lots

Residents of several city neighborhoods may soon enjoy new parkland thanks to City Hall's decision to landscape and plant greenery on disused construction sites.

Moscow's construction investment committee canceled leases on six undeveloped sites around the capital and is turning several of them into parks.

The new parkland includes a site on the 76th kilometer of the Moscow Ring Road that was leased in 2000 to Atlant Motor for construction of an automotive services complex that was supposed to include gas stations, shops and a cafe.

"But the land isn't fenced, there is no construction work being carried out, and buildings and facilities are not available," a department spokesman told Interfax. "Nor is there any development plan, coordinated construction project or building permit. The land development commission considered it appropriate to use the land for landscaping and gardening."

Two other sites originally intended to accommodate shops will also get the green treatment, he said. One is on Dnepropetrovskaya Ulitsa, and the other is on Prospekt Andropova  The sites are among several disused plots the city is trying to find a purpose for.

Officials are still mulling the fate of a site in Kapotnya, a northwestern suburb just outside the MKAD, where an investor named Klip had planned a production and warehouse complex.

Since the lease was signed in 2003, there have been no planning documents and no building permits associated with the project, the city spokesman said.

The same goes for the site on Ulitsa Dorozhnaya, which was rented by a firm called "Special Directorate-180" with the goal of building a depot for building materials.

The land development committee also canceled the lease on a property at 44A Utkina Ulitsa, where Alyans Rezerv had planned to build a car wash. That plot could still be used as a site for a garage, however.

In January 2012, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin ordered Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin to turn the vacant wasteland near the Kremlin that was once the site of the Rossiya hotel into a park. A tender to develop the new park is expected to be held in the first quarter of this year.

Contact the author at r.oliphant@imedia.ru

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