How Moscow’s green zones will change: City launches park improvement competition

How Moscow’s green zones will change: City launches park improvement competition
Levoberezhny recreation area. Project design
Following the wishes of Muscovites, several green areas in Moscow – waterfronts, estates, and tennis courts – will get a new look. Historical areas will be refurbished, and a few new parks will open.

A competition for the improvement of another 12 parks has started in Moscow. A diverse group of sites are included: a huge landscape park and a forest, located in large districts beyond the Moscow Ring Road (MKAD), a waterfront, an area of an old estate, places for leisure and walking along rivers. Two of the parks will be created in place of wasteland and abandoned sites. Renovation ideas for some territories were chosen under the Active Citizen project.

Racing tracks, cycling routes, and eco-trails

The 850th Anniversary of Moscow Park, stretching along the Moskva River, is a favourite recreational place for residents of the Maryino District. Renovation of this park will continue this year. There will be a skate park, playgrounds, exhibition stands, a “green” school, workout grounds as well as places equipped to host mass events.

For speed and competition lovers, in the eastern part of the park, there will be two racing tracks for RC cars. One of them will be paved and have markings, while the other will have hills and remain unpaved. For greater convenience, there will be sports equipment rental stations, shopping pavilions, and two dog parks will be created.

There will also be changes in another green area in Maryino. The football field of Bratislavsky Park will be renovated; there will be a recreational area with a wooden deck next to the pond.

Under the Active Citizen project, Muscovites supported the concept of a new park in Brateyevskaya Floodplain. This abandoned area will be turned into a beautiful place for leisure. There will be pedestrian paths, cycling lanes, roller skating lanes, and along the embankment there will be a pedestrian zone. Currently, Brateyevskaya Floodplain is one of the rare natural areas in Moscow untouched by human activity. That is why improvements will be made in such a way as to preserve its natural features. Eco-trails will appear in habitats of rare species of animals and plants. To create a large green area, there are plans to plant deciduous and coniferous trees and shrubs.

A project to renovate the waterfront at the Levoberezhny recreational zone was also discussed on the Active Citizen website. The coastal zone will be tidied up, and there will be a large pedestrian area with landscape lights and places for leisure.  A cycling route to Dolgoprudny will be organised as well.

Sports and historical planning

The history of the 50th Anniversary of the October RevolutionPark begins in 1967. One of the largest recreational areas in Moscow was organised on the banks of the Ramenka River and quickly became popular among residents. The park is popular both among the residents of the surrounding houses, and people from other areas: the park is conveniently located near the Prospekt Vernadskogo metro station.  However, the recreational area has been long in the need of a facelift. Regular visitors say that the children's playgrounds and the stage are crumbling, the paths are shabby, there is no infrastructure for cycling and roller skating.

Following the renovation, the park will be nice for walking, and people of all different ages will be able to exercise there. There will be grounds for playing volleyball, basketball, table tennis, badminton, and boxing, as well as a skate park. Around the perimeter there will be a cycling route. Pedestrian paths and children’s playgrounds will also undergo renovation. There are plans to create skiing routes, a place for chess playing as well as a baby care room. New lighting is to be installed. Over 800 trees, 1,300 shrubs, flowerbeds as well as additional grass sod will be planted.

The focus of the projects targeting Sad Budushchego (“garden of the future”) Park (near the Botanichesky Sad metro station) and the Mikhalkovo estate is on restoring their historical appearance. Improvement ideas for an abandoned estate, located near Golovinsky ponds, was also discussed on the Active Citizen website. The project includes reconstruction of an oak grove with pedestrian zones, refurbishing of the beach area and of the pier as well as the overhaul of the gangways.

For recreational purposes, two areas by the banks of the Yauza River will also be renewed – a small park adjacent to Lazorevy Proezd, and the territory around Rostokinsky Aqueduct. Behind the aqueduct, there will be floorings that will unite the pedestrian zone along the river with the leisure grounds.

On Khodynskoye Polye, in place of a wasteland there will appear a new park with the total area of 24 hectares. On its main square, there will be a dry fountain.  This is a fountain without a water bowl, like a labyrinth of streams, between which you can walk. The park will be equipped with grounds for playing volleyball, tennis, as well as for parkour, working out, and other kinds of sports. In the eastern part of the park, there will be a pedestrian zone, which will connect the park with the CSKA metro station, the station is currently under construction.

Mitino Landscape Park and Zhulebinskiy Forest Park

Preservation of a unique natural landscape and an emphasis on its historical heritage are at the foundation of the renovation project, which was developed for 111 hectares of Mitino Park. Under the slogan “A Park with a History”, its embankments will be renovated to provide convenient access to the water, while the beach with waterfall as well as an equestrian centre will undergo improvements. There will be cafes near Penyaginsky Pond, a pedestrian bridge, playgrounds and a skate park.

In place of an old vegetable warehouse, next to the metro, there are plans to create an archaeological and historical centre measuring 700 square metres. Historians claim that the area surrounding the park was inhabited in the first millennium AD, which is confirmed by preserved ancient burial sites that currently look like small mounds. According to a legend, they hide treasures buried together with the warriors. The treasures were buried so that the local peasant community could use them if needed. Archaeologists have done excavations in the area, but so far they have not managed to find the buried treasures.

In the late 19th century, a brick manufacturing factory was built on the territory of the park. In the 1930s, the land was transferred to the Moscow Breadbaking Trust. A village of 60 two-storey holiday houses (dachas) was built here for the Trust managers. The village existed until the end of the 20th century, but during the formation of the Mitino District its residents were relocated. Before the construction work was launched, the area was carefully examined, resulting in the discovery of ancient artefacts. The area was designated a historical and cultural landmark, real estate construction was banned, and a landscape park was created.

The large territory of Zhulebinskiy Forest Park, which is located in a Moscow district outside the MKAD, will also undergo improvements. These will include roller skating, scooter, and cycling lanes as well as eco-trails for hikers.

Design for Mitino Landscape Park