Saint Petersburg: A skyscraper Russian gas
giant Gazprom wants to construct in Saint Petersburg in the
face of bitter opposition is set to be built after a key state
body approved the plan, reports said on Saturday.
Opponents of the project have contested that the Okhta
Centre -- a conical glass skyscraper planned to be 403-metres
(1,322-feet) high -- will wreck the historic skyline of
Russia`s former imperial capital.
But the Kommersant newspaper said that last formal
obstacle to the tower had been removed after the state body
charged with assessing construction projects in Russia had
given its green light to the plan at a meeting on October 7.
It said the state body -- Glavgosekspertiza which answers
to the ministry of regional development -- had declined to
comment but several sources in the Gazprom unit responsible
for the tower had confirmed approval had been received.
The deputy director of the Okhta Centre project, Vladimir
Gronsky, also confirmed to Moscow Echo radio that the approval
had been received from the commission that the building would
not impact the Petersburg cityscape.
Kommersant said that now only intervention at the highest
level from the Russian leadership could prevent formal
planning permission being given.