Address by the Governor of St. Petersburg

Declaration of the General Council
The Strategic Plan for St. Petersburg
The Main Goal and Principal Strategic Objectives
The Strategic Plan for St. Petersburg: Main Bearings


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Third strategic objective:

Improvement of the urban environment

Another factor capable of enhancing St. Petersburg's competitive potential is improvement of the urban environment (of both the man-made and natural environment). To this end it is important not to scatter investment but rather to concentrate it in zones of active redevelopment, using resources primarily to develop the infrastructure in such areas, thereby generating a market momentum towards reformation of the city's environment as a whole.

Within this strategic objective five specific goals have been identified.

Revival of St. Petersburg's historical city center. The latter is in itself one of the city's natural advantages in competition with other regions. An internationally renowned architectural masterpiece, it attracts millions of tourists to St. Petersburg and is responsible for the image of the city that the world knows best. It accommodates most of the city's museums, art galleries, theaters, places of interest as well as tourism infrastructure. However, tourism is by no means the only valuable function of this part of the city. A cultural center of world significance, it is not only a treasury of priceless collections of books and works of art, but also a workshop for live modern art - a place where numerous outstanding artistic products have been made in the past and continue to be made to this day. The city center also accommodates the bulk of St. Petersburg's higher-education institutions, scientific-research institutes, local government and federal executive bodies, consulates, financial institutions and representative offices of foreign companies. It is not surprising, then, that here is to be found the largest concentration of retail outlets and public-catering and service facilities. For citizens and visitors the city center is a place to spend one's leisure time, shop, eat out at cafes and restaurants, go to the theater, visit exhibitions and meet with friends.

In addition to the above, close to one million people live in the city center and about one million people come here daily to work.

This explains why the condition of the city center significantly affects the fate of the whole city.

The main problems relating to the city center are:

The poor condition of many buildings. It is necessary to establish procedures which would make reconstruction of such buildings (including those which are monuments of federal or local importance) commercially viable.

Growth of material inequality amongst residents of the city center. This is more pronounced than in the city as a whole. The process of resettlement of residents of shared (communal) apartments should be continued, but reconstruction of houses with such apartments should be conducted in such a way as to make it possible for most residents to stay on at their present residences upon completion of repair work; the center should not be for the wealthy only.

High levels of environmental pollution. Environmentally harmful manufacturing facilities should be relocated from the city center. Air pollution by motor vehicles should be reduced.

Transport problems (traffic jams, shortage of parking space, congested public-transport systems). In the city center priority should be given to public transport. The center should be relieved of transit flows by means of construction of inner ring roads. Systems of traffic control should be improved. A program of construction of underground and multistory parking should be undertaken.

Poor condition of the urban environment. The center needs: more pedestrian zones; new green spaces; more effective use of spaces between houses to form a more human-friendly environment such as will attract small service businesses; recreational zones; promenades and organization of entertainment for residents. All the above will help to reduce the proportion of derelict territory, thereby bringing down the associated crime rate.

Poor condition of infrastructure. The dilapidated state of the infrastructure in the city center prevents the implementation of non-state-funded projects to reconstruct buildings. Forms of partnership must be found that will facilitate complex reconstruction projects for which funding may be sought from the Federal Government, the World Bank and private developers.

The above problems can be solved by developing, on the basis of the Strategic Plan and the federal program entitled "Preservation and development of the historical center of St. Petersburg", a plan of action to attract loans from the World Bank for use in renewing the infrastructure and to provide incentives such as will secure private investment for reconstruction of the historical center. It is important to make the right choices in identifying which locations and which types of redevelopment can do most to enhance the attractiveness of the city center and to raise its levels of business and tourism. This means that it is necessary to work out a strategy for reconstruction of the city center and programs of action for the short-, medium- and long-term.

Creation of zones of dynamic redevelopment is a policy that can be usefully applied not just to the center, but to the whole of St. Petersburg - given the abundance of unexploited or inefficiently exploited land. The fact that land use was for so long free of charge has led to lack of understanding of types of land use and to developments with a density 2-3 times lower than in similar cities in the West. This has resulted in increased expenditure on development and exploitation of infrastructure. To remedy the situation, the first step should be to analyze efficiency of land use in specific mini-districts, taking account of prospects for development of the infrastructure in these districts. The most cost-effective districts from the point of view of commercial development should then be offered for bidding to potential investors, but only after city-planning regulations have been drawn up for the areas in question determining permissible changes in land use. In zones of dynamic urban development a secondary land market may be expected to spring up. Active participation by the city authorities in freeing the best land plots for sale or lease at market prices can be expected to contribute significantly to the city exchequer.

On the other hand, it is equally necessary to identify areas most at risk of environmental degradation. To encourage the reconstruction of these zones it is necessary to create powerful incentives for potential developers.

Establishment of agencies and corporations to undertake land development should be closely linked to the map of redevelopment zones of the first and second types (i.e. respectively, zones offering promising prospects for development, and stagnant zones in which redevelopment has to be stimulated by means of incentives). Development agencies and corporations should be empowered by the city administration to plan land use and manage real estate on behalf of the city.

Development of the inner and suburban transport network. The last few years have seen a large reduction in the services provided by St. Petersburg's public-transport system, including sizable cuts in the extent of routes covered. At the same time, there has been a sharp increase in the number of private cars, in volume of truck traffic, and in congestion of streets and thoroughfares. A balance must be found between private and public transport; the throughput capacity of the city's streets and roads needs to be increased; and there must be an improvement in parking facilities. To this end there must be improvements to procedures for road construction, maintenance and use; the city's transport network requires reconstruction and development; and new road-maintenance facilities must be built.

Selection of objects in the transport system to be built or reconstructed was driven by the principle of optimizing the city's transport flows at minimum cost. Priority tasks are to: complete construction of unfinished metro lines; restore traffic on the section of metro line between Lesnaya and Ploschad Muzhestva stations; and complete construction of two semi-circular roads and freeways. As with other measures to improve the urban infrastructure, it is planned to use multi-source financing, including from international sources. A significant share of the above projects will be financed through mixed state/private or wholly private investment; objects built or reconstructed will be leased to investors and charges levied for their use.

Development of the utilities infrastructure should be carried out by means of its substantial modernization. The present situation is that St. Petersburg's utility networks are extremely dilapidated; there are unacceptable levels of leakage during transport of resources; certain districts of the city suffer from shortage of electricity capacity; and the quality of drinking water is deteriorating.

The program for development of the utilities infrastructure outlined in the Strategic Plan is designed to ensure reliable operation of the city's energy-supply systems, uninterrupted water supply, high quality of drinking water and improved treatment of waste water and sewage.

It is necessary to monitor conditions for connection of customers to the public utilities and to stimulate, where possible, competition between the various utilities. The program for development of the utilities infrastructure is closely bound up with measures for control of the natural monopolies and their pricing policies; control should be exercised in such a way as to make modernization projects sufficiently viable to attract long-term credit.

Improvement of quality of environment. In the first place, environmental improvement requires solutions to the problems of utilization and recycling of waste - which implies reconstruction of enterprises recycling toxic and domestic waste, introduction of certain specific regulatory measures and development of a system of collection, transport, recycling and utilization of waste.

Close attention must be paid to the problem of air pollution. The "Clean air" program provides a framework for implementation of organizational measures and drafting of regional regulation. Water quality should be improved by improving monitoring and by introduction of an integrated system for management of water resources.

In order to improve recreational opportunities in the city, work must be done in the direction of preserving and developing St. Petersburg's fund of protected natural zones, including public gardens and parks. Ecological decisions must be taken on the basis of commonly established principles and in conformity with international agreements; to this end a program entitled "The sustained development of St. Petersburg" should be developed.

3. Improvement of the urban environment



3.1. Revival of the historical city center

3.1.1. Obtain federal and international funding for reconstruction of the city center
3.1.2. Stimulate private investment in reconstruction of the city center
3.1.3. Use reconstruction of the city center to achieve the city’s strategic goals

3.2. Formation of zones of dynamic urban redevelopment

3.2.1. Identify and give legal status to zones of dynamic redevelopment and to a framework for investment activity in these zones
3.2.2. Develop a system of measures to foster development in zones of dynamic redevelopment

3.3. Development of the inner-city and suburban transport network and of major roads

3.3.1. Develop an integrated system of high-speed rail transport based on integrated development of the metropolitan, high-speed tramway and railway network in the period up to year 2005
3.3.2. Carry out reconstruction and development of the roads network

3.4. Development of utilities infrastructure

3.4.1. Ensure continuous, reliable and safe operation of St. Petersburg’s energy-supply facilities
3.4.2. Ensure uninterrupted water supply to consumers and improve the quality of drinking water
3.4.3. Improve the quality of waste-water treatment
3.4.4. Develop a regional power-supply market and strengthen control over natural monopolies
3.4.5. Reduce per capita consumption of energy and water resources

3.5. Improvement of the state of the environment

3.5.1. Protect the environment from the negative effects of industrial and domestic waste
3.5.2. Improve the condition of objects in the municipal water system
3.5.3. Protect the atmospheric environment from mobile and fixed sources of pollution
3.5.4. Improve the condition of St. Petersburg’s green areas and protected natural zones
3.5.5. Improve quality of decision-making with regard to the use of natural areas and protection of the environment