The making of the artificial islands in the Black Sea in Sochi area, similar to the islands made in Dubai, UAE – is  one issue in development of Sochi I strongly oppose. I first heard of the idea a few years back, when mayor of Moscow, Yuri Luzhkov, visited Sochi and voiced this idea. And recently this was brought up in public again by the former mayor of Sochi Leonid Mostovoy.

Why do they think it’s a good idea to build artificial islands in a city that, lets be straight, is not yet developed to its full potential? Well, there are a few reasons. Firstly, Sochi may be underdeveloped, but its land is pretty much is all sold out. And since Sochi is the only subtropics in Russia, its real estate has become very expensive. So, its expensive to buy, and its expensive to lease. Sochi is also very mountainous city, there is simply not much flat land where one could build. So they think is easier to make islands.

Why do I oppose the idea? I also have a few reasons. One is the environmental cost of the project. Im not an expert in this, but it seems logical to me that building large artificial islands in a small Black Sea may have a large toll on the environment. Nature is more expensive then money. And even though I understand that often we’ll often harm nature for our comfort, I believe “the islands issue” should be dropped and they should utilize existing land to make their money. Another reason – is credibility of the people who voiced this idea. What can mayor of Moscow have in this? Well, he voiced his idea when he was in the end of the previous term in Moscow, and there was a lot of talk about him becoming mayer of Sochi next. His wife, Elena Baturina (ranked #335 on Forbes’ World’s Richest People list), owns construction businesses. Its not that hard to guess who’d get all those construction contracts. And for Mostovoy, many people in Sochi did not like the guy. He did very little for the city, and then one day he publicly stated that Sochi is not the city for poor, and that anyone who doesn’t like it should move out to the villages of Kuban – that to the people who voted for him.

Anyways, this idea right now seems to be only “talk”, and it doesn’t look like it has any public or government support. I hope it stays this way, and I hope in the event business lobby grows, people loudly oppose it.


  1. 1
    December 1st, 2007 at 12:38

    Sochi is a great city and will only get better. The thing that I think Russia really must do to make Sochi a better destination for tourists is… Make it simple for Americans to go there! It is a slow process to get a Visa to visit Russia and then once you arrive, you need to register with the hotel. If travel to Russia was easy for Americans, i know Sochi would become even busier, although maybe it is busy enough?

    I spent 2 years there and love it. Too bad land is getting so expensive now. Maybe I need to think about selling my land there!! :-)

  2. 2
    Eugene Niewiadomski
    January 26th, 2008 at 6:46

    Out of twenty years experience of the hotels and resorts construction in Australia, Asia and Europe, for the last three years I have been involved in the construction of Palm Jumeira and Palm Jabel Ali islands in Dubai.
    Base on my experience I would like to dispel all concerns and doubts about profitability of the project and its negative impact on the Sochi economy.

    The time limitation, six years, make the project really challenging, but I am sure that the Federal Island will be completed on time; there is no other possibility as the whole world is following up the work progress.

    If I can add a piece of advice; during the master plan preparation I would rather concentrate on the domestic, not international elitist tourism; after all, Russians represent the third biggest group of tourists in Dubai.

  3. 3
    Takashi Nonin
    March 25th, 2008 at 7:09

    Building of Federation Island off Sochi looks like it is already decided to go on. President Putin issued a GO sign last September.

    This is one project on the part of the Russian side, But, on the other hand, do you know that Japanese business group, backed up by some other Russian authorities, is also eyeing at the project with its own unique earthquake-resistance technology?

    My question is: Are the two groups’ artificial islands allowed to be constructed
    in the Black Sea at the same time?

    Thank you in advance.

  4. 4
    May 8th, 2008 at 2:47

    Hi People

    I am interested in getting a list of names of construction companies that will be involved in developement in this area in the upcoming years. Any information will be greatly appreciated.



  1. Sochi, Russia » Blog Archive » Photos of Federation Island Model

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