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26% of Moscow Is Closed to Cars and Pedestrians

More than a quarter of Moscow is out-of-bounds to both cars and pedestrians that are not authorized to enter its various off-limits zones, a news report said Monday.

About 11 percent of Moscow is designated as "closed" and is accessible only to employees of organizations located in these areas, such as railroad or military facilities, according to a study by Moscow city planners, RBC Daily reported.

Within the capital's ring road, more than 15 percent of land is taken up by industrial zones, gated housing communities, private office buildings or garage cooperatives, where private security guards prevent trespassing.

Beyond these areas, another 11 percent of the city is made up of public spaces that are largely open to the public, but which are subject to some kind of temporary restriction. This includes parks or school yards that are only open during certain times of the day.

Architect Eduard Khaiman said residents of some districts on the outskirts of the city are fencing off their neighborhoods, making the areas difficult to navigate, while pedestrian traffic in downtown Moscow is often blocked by kiosks or parking lots.

Municipal legislature lawmaker Yelena Tkach added that construction projects in the city — which require whole city blocks to be sealed off — often see smaller old buildings being replaced with larger new ones.

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