10 Сентября 2020

City Master Plan: Speed-Reading Exam Passed

Krasnodar, 10 September. The draft Krasnodar City Master Plan has been finally approved. On September 2, the result of many years of work on a major document of the city took its final shape at the City Duma: of the 38 deputies, four voted against it, two abstained, and 32 voted in favour of the presented bill. 

“Now we are reviewing the results of our several-year-long large-scale work. It resulted in a serious urban-planning document that will determine the development prospects for our city in all spheres and domains for the next twenty years,” Acting Mayor Vitali Kosenko said. 

At the same time, the city-dwellers, entrepreneurs, developers and many others expressed lots of critical remarks to the draft master plan. The main response was given to the issue of changing the purpose of use of the city’s land. Judging by the text of the conclusion, many remarks had to do with preserving the purpose of use of a land parcel as a construction area for social facilities. However, not all decisions taken were in favour of the applicants. We cannot say what the commission members were guided by when turning down these ideas. A number of other complicated situations also appeared. For instance, members of the gardeners’ noncommercial partnership “Zheleznodorozhnik”, the owners of the residential houses and land parcels that were to be withdrawn for the construction of a motor and rail roads, who had asked the commission to consider their case – all their requests were denied. 

Many public activists stated that they did not see the dialog they had expected, and they still wanted to know in detail why this or that initiative had been denied. 

Marina Repeshchuk from the “Transport Initiative” asserted that the Master Plan had not been thoroughly wrought out by the moment of approval by the City Duma. 

“I had been in permanent contact with the Duma, and to the best of my knowing by September 1 the Deputies had not yet received the draft master plan – and the following morning it was already approved. It makes me suspect that the amendments were adopted without being reviewed. If the deputies of the new convocation would not take measures to get the master plan into normal shape, the new Duma would lose its face in the townsfolk’s eyes – it would be an anti-popular team,” the activist stated. 

Dmitri Kolomiets, a City Duma deputy, said that even after a shallow study of the master plan he had a number of questions to it: “Based on the information we were given, it may be concluded that the number of functional zones has considerably grown. However, the authors neglected the fact that the boundaries had not been properly established for nearly 40% of the land parcels. As a result, many land plots now belong to two functional zones at once.” 

At the same time, some experts gave a positive assessment to the approved document. They are confident that it will ensure due basis for progressive town-planning policy. 

Commenting on the issue, Governor Veniamin Kondratiev said: “I am positive that the document had to be adopted, but now it has to be improved considering the expressed interests. Maybe, even a special commission would have to be summoned to settle these issues. It is natural that the city development plan meant for twenty years will be subject to adjustments and corrections. What is important is the fact that now we have a document that determines the principal line which will serve as a reference point for further development of the city’s infrastructure.”

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