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The Russia Tower ( ; Bashnya Rossiya) is an unfinished supertall skyscraper, the construction of which iscancelled, in the Moscow International Business Centremarker of Moscowmarker, Russiamarker. Construction began in September, 2007, and was planned to be completed in 2012. The total area of the structure would cover , of which 38% (approximately ) would be located underground. The tower would contain 118 floors, 101 elevators, and underground parking to accommodate 3,680 cars. Commercial retail shops would be located at the base of the building. The maximum capacity of the building was projected to be around 30,000.

Construction was halted in November 2008 due to financial difficulties . In February 2009, it was announced that the project has been suspended and that it is now unlikely that the tower, in its original form, will be built. In June 2009 the project was officially cancelled .

History

Originally, Russia Tower was proposed for plots 2 and 3 of the Moscow International Business Centre in 1994 as the world's tallest building; a , 125-story tower. It was designed by Chicago-based architectural firm Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. It was soon moved to plot 14. In the middle of 2003 an updated , 134-story design had been moved to plots 17 and 18. In January 2004, the Moscow Development Company (STT Group) was appointed as the main investor and developer of the $2-billion project.

On 18 September 2007, the building's cornerstone was laid in an official groundbreaking ceremony.

The Russian news agency Interfax reported on 21 November 2008 that construction on the tower was to be halted. Shalva Chigirinsky, head of the tower's development company, indicated that the credit crisis of 2008 had left him unable to secure financing for the project and had also eviscerated demand for the tower's office space, even if the building were able to be completed.

On 3 December, Russian oil company Sibir Energy agreed to buy a number of real estate assets, including Russia Tower, from Chigirinsky. As Chigirinsky was a major shareholder in Sibir Energy, the purpose of the purchase was to alleviate financial pressures upon him, so that he would not be forced to sell his shares in the company, and thus enable the company to preserve its existing shareholder structure. However, many analysts decried the move, arguing that such use of the oil company's capital to assist Chigirinsky by purchasing his distressed real estate assets — which had no relation to the company's core oil business — at possibly inflated prices was detrimental to the company's shareholders and constituted a significant conflict of interest.

Current status

On 12 February 2009, it was announced that the Russia Tower will most likely not be built. The project developer's assistant stated that, "In today's economy, a project of such scale is no longer feasible for us and can no longer be justified." In place of the tower, the company proposes to use the land to build three smaller skyscrapers and a large parking garage.

See also



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