The site will be partially opened for visitors next year. A new concept of reconstruction has been developed, today it was presented and discussed at the Smolnyi. Mariya Marchenko found out how the resident-favorite recreation place will be like and what will appear in the New Holland.
Mariya Marchenko, reporter: “For the first time in its 300-year history, the New Holland – formerly a military site – will be opened not only during the summer, but all year round: 365 days and 24-hours a day. These are the main principles of the concept presented today at the Smolnyi”
Reconstruction work of the New Holland was trusted to the Dutch. Specialists from the Netherlands proved to be careful and respectful to the early classicist industrial monument – there will be no new buildings on the historic ground, all existing ones will be renovated.
Edzo Bindels, head architect of the project: “There will be a lawn and a pedestrian ring inside the island. And so on – the trace of time”
This will be within the city – with stores, cafes, a cinema and art galleries. Temporary pontoons and a swimming pool will be installed by the water side, there will be an ice-skating rink during the winter. Historic red-brick walls will naturally fit into interiors of the apartment hotel, designer workshops and IT-specialists offices. Ideally, after renovation the New Holland will join the Apraksin Dvor in St. Petersburg’s creative cluster.
Mikhail Piotrovskiy, director of The State Hermitage Museum: “This project changes the quality of the residents’ living. Tourists will be willing to come back over and over again. Just like in Paris, visitors will delve into this sphere of the city’s life”
Mikhail Piotrovskiy expressed hope that it will provide competition to the Dvortsovaya square for the status of the main venue of mass festivities. The island can take up to 11 thousand people, according to organizers of the “Summer at the New Holland” project. But there have to be additional two bridges built from the Kryukov canal’s embankment for their safety. And this caused concerns among the city’s authorities.
Alexander Kononov, deputy head of VOOPIK: “The embankment is an architectural monument, it mustn’t be changed. But, generally speaking, it is a very good project”
The infamous dome, which, reportedly, Roman Abramovich – the main investor – wanted to cover the territory with will not be put. The flat roof of glass will only appear on one building. And it will not spoil the look of the monument. The construction is expected to be done by 2017, but the territory will be opened gradually. The first visitors will be allowed here in a year.
Georgiy Poltavchenko, acting governor of St. Petersburg: “It’s a pretty project”
The council on protection of historic heritage has already unanimously supported the project. Authorities described it as a role model for all investors. They were upset, though, that this principle was not used by those who are reconstructing Nikolskiye Ryady and Konushennyi Dvor.