Consortium Wins Tender To Design Theme Park

An international consortium led by real estate company Cushman & Wakefield has won the tender for the best design and financial concept for a theme park called "Russia" to be built south of Moscow near Domodedovo airport, the company announced Monday.

Second place went to Dutch landscape architecture design firm Hosper.

Park Russia is envisaged as a national theme and amusement park, where visitors would be able to get acquainted with the nature, traditions and cultural heritage of all Russian regions.

The park will be built on 1,000 hectares of land approximately 75 kilometers south of the capital near Domodedovo Airport, the Moscow region press service said.

The tender's winner will receive a cash prize of about 3 million rubles ($90,000).

Almost 180 companies participated in the tender to build what may become a post-Soviet version of the VDNKh — the exhibition center on Prospekt Mira that originally showcased the economic achievements of the U.S.S.R.

The winner was chosen based on a number of criteria including architecture and design concept, proposals for access to transportation, visitors' infrastructure inside the park and other criteria.

Russian design companies EPI Mosproyekt-5 and Citimakers received the third and the fourth places in the tender, correspondingly, RIA Novosti reported.

The final version of Park Russia will incorporate ideas provided not only by the winner, but the other participating companies as well, the project's organizers said. They plan to finalize designing the park's concept and outline the financial model for its construction later this year.

Cushman & Wakefield estimated the probable cost of the park's construction at $8 billion, while the payback period for the project is expected to be 12 years.

The company proposes to divide the park's territory into southern and northern sectors with the 175-meter-high flagstaff tower dominating the territory. The concept also provides for the development of railway infrastructure around the park, which will transport about 40 percent of its visitors, the newspaper said.

The work on the park's construction may create up to 9,000 jobs for Moscow and the region, according to Cushman & Wakefield estimates.

The company's design for the park also provides for planting up to 1 million trees in the area.

Regional authorities expect that the park will bring more than 70 billion rubles in tax revenues to the budget. They also expect that the project's implementation will help develop local hotel infrastructure and increase tourist traffic, the region's press service said.

The park may draw up to 10 million visitors per year, Cushman & Wakefield said in a press release.  

The first stage of the construction including main zones and the miniatures park is expected to be completed in the next two years, while the theme park and hotels should be open in 2017 to 2019. By 2020 to 2021 the park will add an exhibition complex and sports facilities and will be ready for year-round operation, the press service said.

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