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The rapid pace of residential construction on Marshal Blyukhera Prospect in the area around the Kushelevskaya Road began a relatively short time ago, but already you can see how an abandoned military site has been transformed into a modern residential complex.
Today, housing blocks are being built on both sides of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect, but literally a short time ago, this area was recognised as a 'grey' industrial zone. Data from the analysis department of the company LSR Real Estate – North West, indicates that approximately 250,000 sq. m. of housing currently under construction is now on display on the primary market in this area of the Kaliningrad district.
The new district is being built by four large construction companies from St Petersburg. Approximately 1 million sq. m. of housing will be built on both sides of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect.
Demilitarizing the site
The most rapid construction is being seen on the part of the site that was previously the property of the Ministry of Defence. A military unit was based here – the Petersburg district's artillery supplies were warehoused here as well as the city's artillery laboratory.
Olga Frolova, Senior Analyst at Surveyor International Group says that the project for reclaming the site, under which the comprehensive development of the site as a housing and residential complex is envisaged, was drawn up in 2007, but has not yet received approval.
Plans to build here were only made public in 2007, after the land here was purchased: the largest buyers were the LSR Group and CDS and a small amount of land was acquired by the company KVS. By this time, Setl City had already been started by the construction of housing complexes in the neighbouring sector, located to the east, along the other side of Laboratorniy Prospect, linking the sector on the former military site with the exisiting buildings.
As described by LSR Real Estate – North West, the company approved a draft plan for the entire site, with Marshal Blyukhera Prospect, Kushelevskaya Road, Bestyzhevskaya St. and Laboratorniy Prospect as boundaries. Now on the 90 hectare site, several large developments are all being built at the same time, with a total area of over 780,000 sq. m.
Approximately one third of the site – roughly 35 hectares – is given over to LSR Group housing projects: here the group is building the Kalina Park and the Kalina Park 2 residential complexes, located directly at the junction of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect and Kushelevskaya Road. These will be 25 storey housing blocks and their total accommodation area will amount to approx. 340,000 sq. m. The timeframe for the completion of this housing project is 2016.
The CDS Group is now also building its residential complex, the Kantemirovskiy, here. According to Sergey Terentiev, Director of Real Estate at the State Company CDS, the project consists of eight brick monolithic housing blocks, ranging from 19 to 25 storeys. The housing complex has been designed to accommodate 4.5 thousand flats with an area of over 180,000 sq. m.
The company RosStroyInvest is also building yet another complex on this side of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect – the Morning Star housing complex, ranging from 19-24 storeys and designed to provide 522 flats. Construction completion is scheduled for Q3, 2015.
In August, the company SMU-12 won the tender to build homes at the junction between Marshal Blyukhera Prospect and Laboratornaya St. Here a 19 storey block is planned.
The other side
In terms of housing development, it is planned to develop a 50 hectare plot on the south side of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect. According to Olga Frolova,, this plot has already had planning permission approved and the construction of two residential complexes is already underway. Here over 450,000 sq.m. of housing is planned.
The first of these housing developments – 'Masters City' from the very same RosStroyInvest – consists of two 16 storey buildings, that will house 1,242 apartments. The first phase is scheduled to be complete in Q2, 2016 and the second in Q4, 2016.
The Leader Group is yet another developer developing this district – they are building the 'Medalist' housing complex, which will feature 1,170 apartments with a total area of 52 000 sq.m. The commissioning of this complex, according to the project statement, is planned for Q3, 2017.
A new development tender in the Kalinin District caters for the mass housing demand, namely in the comfort class segment. This is facilitated by its relative proximity to the metro (approx. 15 minutes on foot), good transport links to the city centre and its location next to housing sectors that are now fully developed. Many flats are offered for sale with an improved fine interior finish and construction methods are now making use of energy-efficient technology.
According to Polina Yakovleva, Director of the Newbuild Department at NAI Becar, the average cost of property in this area ranges from RUR 65-90,000 per sq. m. "We are offering affordable apartments for sale, at a similar price to the city's residential districts", said Sergey Terentiev.
Olga Frolova says thatthe price per square metre in the Marshal Blyukhera Prospect – Kushelevskaya Road – Laborantorny Prospect district will not fall below RUR 72,000 per sq. m. in homes that are due for completion in 2016 and that are subject to a one-time payment. In those complexes which are due to be completed and sold in the very near future, an even higher price applies – up to RUR 133,000 per sq.m. LSR Real Estate – North West says that in the Kalina-Park project, the price of a square metre ranges from RUR 74 – to 96,000.
"But on the south side of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect, flats are being sold at more affordable prices, due to the poor quality of the surrounding area ", says Olga Frolova. Leader Group is offering three-room apartments in the 'Medalist' housing complex from RUR 61,000 per sq. m. "
It should be noted that the average price per square metre for newbuilds in the Kalinin District reached RUR 92.6 thousand in July, according to data from 'Peterburgskaya Nedvizhimost'.
On the way to the city centre
Today, redevelopment is virtually the only option available for housing constructon in the city centre.
In St Petersburg itself, there is a shortage of newbuild land and the development of this same part of the Kalinin District has enabled developers to launch a signifucant volume of high-quality housing onto the market. "Providing utility services is an important advantage of revelopment ", said Sergey Terentiev.
The area should be attractive to buyers to a large extent as a result of its transport links. It seems that on the one hand, the new neighbourhood is located on the border of the city's central districts, which you can bypass by travelling up Lesnoy Prospekt, and by going along Kantemirovskiy Prospekt, you have immediate access to the Petrogradsky district. On the other hand, Piskarevskiy and Grazhdanskiy Prospekt provide easy access to the city's residential areas. The Kushelevka railway station with trains to Vsevolozhk and the 'Lesnaya' and 'Ploshchad Muzhestva' metro stations nearby are yet another advantage.
The garages on the south side of Marshal Blyukhera Prospect make the site a little less attractive, but these are expected to be removed during the area's development. Additional areas of land for development in this area may be afforded by entrenching underground power lines, which currently run from Polyustrovskiy Prospekt to Prospekt Energetikov. This, as yet, has not been initiated.
There is still time to buy
The area around the 'Lesnaya' metro station is extremely attractive in terms of its commercial infrastructure, maintains PolinaYakovleva. The construction of the 'Evropolis' shopping centre on Polyustrovskiy Prospekt is almost complete and nearby there are large furniture centres, car and vehicle services, offices and warehouse space.
In terms of social infrastructure, it is not so simple. The area's direct proximity to already existing housing developments and infrastructure – kindergartens, schools and out-patient clinics is currently making the area very popular with buyers. "We hope that the infrastructure here will be sufficient for the amount of construction development proposed" said Olga Frolova, "soon there could be an acute shortage of it ". However around the area of the Kushelevskaya Road and Marshal Blyukhera Prospect, the social infrastructure is still insufficient. It's true that the developers have promised to participate in its construction, and in particular, in the building of kindergartens.
Maria Mokeicheva - email@example.com
Feature pages of ‘Delovoi Peterburg’, supplement ‘Where to live’, № 146, 11/09/2014, с 12(02), 13(03)
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