Moscow set to double in size with
new masterplan for city expansion

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Capital Cities Planning Group Moscow expansion proposal

Dezeen News: a British and American proposal for a new district built around manmade waterways has been selected as part of a masterplan to double the size of Moscow in the next few decades.

An international jury selected the entry submitted by Capital Cities Planning Group, which comprises London-based landscape architects Gillespies, London and Edinburgh-based urban designers John Thompson & Partners and international engineering consultants Buro Happold.

Capital Cities Planning Group Moscow expansion proposal

The expansion project is part of the Russian government's plans to double the size of Moscow, already a city of 11 million people, in order to attract business and build the capital's global reputation.

The winning proposal, called 'City in the Forest', is arranged around a series of lakes designed by Gillespies. The development would house 1.7 million people and provide 800,000 jobs, mostly in government, education and business sectors.

Capital Cities Planning Group Moscow expansion proposal

John Thompson, chair of John Thompson & Partners, said the winning proposal offered "a model for the further expansion of Moscow through the creation of a properly serviced, zero-carbon, transit-orientated urban hierarchy set within a forest and lakeside landscape."

In April we reported that international firm OMA had scored highest in the first round of the competition to oversee Moscow's expansion.

Capital Cities Planning Group Moscow expansion proposal

Above image shows map of the proposed city expansion

We've previously featured two bridges designed by engineers Buro Happold – a bridge over the River Soar in Leicester and the as-yet-unbuilt Metro West bridge in the Liffey Valley near Dublin.

See all our stories about Russia »

Here's the full press release:


Moscow Expansion Winning Team Announced
Capital Cities Planning Group (CCPG), an Anglo-American team including Gillespies, John Thompson & Partners and Buro Happold, has won a prestigious competition to plan the future expansion of the City of Moscow.

The international jury headed by Deputy Mayor Marat Khusnullin awarded two prizes; one to CCPG led by Urban Design Associates of the USA for the design and planning of the new Federal District, and the second to Antoine Grumbach & Jean-Michel Wilmotte of Paris for the overall planning of Moscow.

CCPG’s winning proposal calls for a new ‘City in the Forest’ for 1.7 million people, providing 800,000 new jobs with a focus around the ‘Triple Helix of Government, Education and Business’. The new layout reconfigures the 155 km2 earmarked for the district and looks to create an integrated, properly-planned urban hierarchy served by a transit-orientated movement system.

The winning design by CCPG featured a new mixed-use capital district configured around a series of lakes designed by the UK Landscape Design Practice Gillespies. Brian Evans, partner in charge of Gillespies Glasgow Office, who led the British side of the team said: “We are all knocked out by this recognition for our work on the world stage. It seems that our design to use the natural topography of the site to create a series of lakes as the setting for the new Federal District was one of the key factors in the jury’s mind when they appraised the different proposals”.

John Thompson, Chair of John Thompson & Partners & Honorary President of the Academy of Urbanism, said: “We are delighted that our team has won the competition for the design of the new Federal District, bringing together international best practice to create a model for the further expansion of Moscow through the creation of a properly serviced, zero-carbon, transit orientated urban hierarchy set within a forest and lakeside landscape.”

Earlier this year the Russian Federal Government announced that it was doubling the territory of Moscow to enable it to grow into a competitive 21st century world capital. In February 2012, Sergey Sobyanin, the Mayor of Moscow announced an international competition and selected 10 teams from around the world to prepare plans for the Moscow Region, for the City overall and for the planning and design of a new federal capital for the ministries of the federal government.

The Government of Moscow set up a 6 month, 3-stage process with all the teams working and reporting to the Moscow Government on a monthly basis. The finished work of all the teams is currently on show at a public exhibition in Gorky Park.

  • Nino

    Lots of nice big sheds. :-)

  • gripz

    How about freedom first?

  • Fathom

    Wow so conservative – is this retro-postmodern or retro-rennaissance? Or is the language of symmetrical plazas with obelisks just a sign that the power structure of today’s Russia resembles that of 16th century France?

  • Thomas

    Well good they didn't win.

  • skeptical

    What about the ‘old’ Moscow? Cities should grow more organically, this is going to just leave a bunch of undesirable areas everywhere and leave Moscow feeling more empty than alive. Doesn’t sound like this massive development was created out of necessity but rather out of greed. I hope the next Russian generation is ready to inherit another huge problem.

  • Vladimir

    OMA had the best proposal, hope it will be published soon. And the list of the winners – is just a very bad JOKE.

  • vincent

    I really hope OMA comes up with a really solid plan for Moscow’s new area. The current expansions are a total mess. For some reason, Russia never got past the “plattenbau” – they just scaled it up. Higher and in bigger, but no design at all. Seriously, those area’s make people braindead. And almost every residential area has the same buildings. OMA is going to have a heavy task in making the Moscovite construction world change. But hey, how ironic: Koolhaas introduced “generic city”, he actually could be the fittest person for the task. :)

    A tip for extra-interested people. Take a peek on Google maps, because there is streetview available in Moscow. Moscow’s basic structure is roughly built up of concentric rings, historic in the middle, new on the outside. Even a short look at the outer areas, and you’ll see what I’m writing about.

    On the satellite images the newest areas are clearly distinguishable from the older by colour and structure, but they’re still more of the same.