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  2. Kindergarten construction continued in the Kamenny Bor Park in Karelia. The park's defender was hit by a digger

Kindergarten construction continued in the Kamenny Bor Park in Karelia. The park's defender was hit by a digger

Viktoriya Tikka
On March 9, residents tried to save the park again
Photo from vk.com/xranitelibora

On April 8, preparation works on the construction site of a kindergarten in the Kamenny Bor (‘Stone Forest’) Park continued. The work had been temporarily put on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic. According to Mikhail Novozhilov, one of the defenders of the Kamenny Bor Park, an activist was injured by a developer's digger. The police reported some defenders of the park for the violation of the self-isolation regime.

An inspection of the Prosecutor's office showed that the developer — TechExpert LLC, Moscow - illegally occupied a land plot of 580 m². Residents came to the defense of the forest on April 9. They believe that the company does not have the right to work in the Kamenny Bor Park until the authorities determine exactly where the recreational area is located. The developer fenced the land plot with a hoarding on April 8–9. Defenders of the Kamenny Bor Park believe that this is how the company wants to hide illegal logging which resulted in a criminal case.

When asked by residents about the land plot which the Prosecutor's office recognized as illegally occupied, Evgeny Alimuradov, the CEO of TechExpert LLC, said that he had a permit to work in the recreational area. He showed the documents. In addition, Alimuradov said that he had a permit from the Ministry for Economic Development and Industry of the Republic of Karelia to work during the period of epidemiological restrictions. According to lawyer Olga Tuzhikova, Alimuradov first tried to push the activists out of the fenced area and then ordered the excavator operator to start work. Olga Tuzhikova said that the digger hit one of the women standing next to it with a hoe.

- The digger was using a hoe near the people. It was working and practically lifted me on a hoe, I’ve got a bruise on my leg, - activist Natalya confirmed to the correspondent of 7x7.

The activists called the police after that.

- The police came, and instead of taking into account what we were saying and actually stopping the works, instead of obliging to transfer the recreation area they began to apply administrative measures on violation of self-isolation to the citizens, that is, two or more protocols on violation of self-isolation were drawn up again [the protocols were drawn up on April 8 when the representatives of TechExpert LLC called the police], - explained Olga Tuzhikova.

In the evening of April 11, the defenders of the Kamenny Bor Park reported that construction debris had appeared in the park. They published the pictures in the community on vk.com.

- These photos have recorded the littering of the Kamenny Bor Park’s territory. The hoarding around the construction site of the kindergarten was thrown off a cliff. It happened in addition to everything else that this territory has gone through recently. These photos with geotags will be given to the environmental prosecutor's office, - residents wrote.

Части строительного забора раскиданы по парку.

Parts of the hoarding scattered throughout the park. Photo from vk.com/parkkamennyibor

The developer began to cut down two sections in the Kamenny Bor Park in February 2020. The developer demolished a memorial sign to Yakov Stepanov, the soldier of the Great Patriotic War, that had been installed at the site of his possible death. The administration of Petrozavodsk responded that the monument had been dismantled and would be restored in the autumn of 2020 as soon as the kindergarten was completed. The Prosecutor's office responded that there were no restrictions on dismantling since this was only a "possible" place of death. The monument is currently in storage in the MUE Town Transport.

On March 31, 2020, defenders of the Kamenny Bor Park filed a lawsuit against the administration of Petrozavodsk to recognize the allocation of an area of 280 m² for the construction of a kindergarten illegal, because it contradicts the norms of the Town Planning Code. While the claim is being considered in court, construction in the park continues. This land plot is located in the health care facilities zone where pre-school, primary and secondary general educational institutions can be built.

Defenders applied to the Department of Economic Security and Combating the Corruption of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Russia for Petrozavodsk and the Prosecutor's office.

The prosecutor's investigation ascertained the takeover of 580 m² in the Kamenny Bor Park by the developer, TechExpert LLC, on March 26. The administration committed several violations when issuing permits for the land clearing, the Prosecutor's office passed on recommendation to it, it is being under consideration. Pre-investigation check is being carried out in order to estimate damage caused by cutting down the trees in the Kamenny Bor Park.

Defenders of the Kamenny Bor Park believe that the site of the works can be a recreation area of the park.


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