To help alleviate congestion in the core of Moscow and create a grand, coherent capital appropriate to an emerging nation, President Putin, Prime Minister Medvedev and Mayor Sobyanin intend to move Russia’s federal functions from scattered locations in central Moscow to a new capital district at the edge of the city. To help figure out how to make such a bold move, the Russian government sponsored an international competition to solicit ideas.
Ten teams were shortlisted and paid to develop detailed plans that were presented in a series of workshops in Moscow. Nelson\Nygaard led the transportation work for the Anglo-American team, led by Urban Design Associates of Pittsburgh, with Larry Beasley from Vancouver, Gillespies from Glasgow, and John Thompson Partners from London.
In September 2012, the Russians announced two winners: Antoine Grumbach of Paris for their regional plan, and the Nelson\Nygaard team for the new capital district. The judges singled out the transit- and pedestrian-orientation of our approach, and how we learned from the successes and failures of efforts to relocate federal jobs in the DC region. More controversial was our plan to link Moscow’s 19th century regional rail terminals to each other with a Crossrail-scale project that would include a new central rail station near the Kremlin.