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Akademichesky, Ekaterinburg

New city for 350,000 people in the foothills of the Urals

The Akademichesky project - to create a new city district adjoining Ekaterinburg - is one of the largest construction projects in Russia and will take up to an estimated 20 years of continuous construction to complete.

When finished the project will comprise more than nine million square metres of residential space and over four million square metres of commercial and retail space. The main aim of the project is to promote economic growth in the region, creating jobs and changing the lifestyles of the Ural region's residents.

The project developers, Renova Stroy Group, approached Arup to prepare a study of peat conditions across the 1,500ha site and recommend peat remediation and design solutions for construction on this difficult ground.

Arup's geotechnics teams in the United Kingdom and Russia worked together on the project, reviewing the design documentation prepared by other sub-consultants before providing final recommendations to the client. The recommendations will save Renova tens of millions of dollars during site preparation and construction.

Nestling in the foothills of the Urals, 1,000 miles east of Moscow, and sitting on the border of Europe and Asia, Ekaterinburg was founded in 1723 and named after St Catherine (Yekaterina). The Urals are often called the industrial heart of Russia. Rich in mineral resources, fossil fuels and forests, the Urals produce 60% of Russian oil and 90% of its gas. As a result, Ekaterinburg considers itself the third city of Russia.