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SBD Global/September 26, 2013/Facilities
St. Petersburg Officials Drop Zenit Stadium Developer, Put Out Call For Replacement
Published September 26, 2013
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WORK WILL GO ON: City Hall insists the replacement of the developer will not have a negative impact on the work schedule or the project’s budget. Earlier, city officials said that the total cost of the project is to be 34.9B rubles ($1.1B), and the stadium, which is to host 2018 World Cup matches, is to be inaugurated in '16. The construction of Zenit Arena began in '06, but the project was revised and the capacity raised by 5,000 seats to 70,000 when Russia put the arena on its application to host the World Cup. The new stadium is being erected on the site of FC Zenit’s former home arena, Kirov stadium, built in the '50s and demolished in the mid-2000s. The construction stirred controversy when the cost of the project went up drastically from the initial 6.7B rubles ($202M). Allegations about corruption and embezzlement were made but no proof was ever found.
Vladimir Kozlov is a writer in Moscow.