Support The Moscow Times!

Moscow Officials Vote on Home Demolition Plan Despite Prosecutors' Warnings

An interior view shows a flat in an old five-story apartment building, which is demolished as part of the city authorities' project, in Moscow. Sergei Karpukhin / Reuters

The Moscow government will vote on new changes to the capital's controversial home demolition program despite city prosecutors slamming the law as “unclear.”

The Moscow prosecutor's office flagged concerns about the law on Tuesday night, warning officials that the bill relied on “ambiguous language,” Russia's Kommersant newspaper reported Wednesday. 

The law, which will appear before the Moscow City Duma for its first reading on Wednesday, had been lauded as bringing better protection for city residents affected by the mayor's controversial demolition program. The plans, which will see 45,000 four and five-story apartment blocks destroyed across the city, could affect as many as 1.6 million people. Tenants will be able to vote on the plans, with buildings only being demolished if more than two-thirds of residents agree with the scheme. 

The government has pledged to rehouse affected residents, but many are concerned that replacement apartments could be worth less than their original property.

The new bill hopes to tackle residents' concerns, as well as set out more detailed procedures in case of disputes.

But lawyers said that the legislation did not go far enough, and needed “further elaboration” in order to solve potential conflicts, Kommersant reported. 

The legislation stipulates that tenants who cannot decide whether their building should be demolished after a formal vote should hold a general meeting. Yet the legal consequences of these meetings had not been formally settled, prosecutors said.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more