Arkady Rotenberg leads a chord through the burial ground

The billionaire’s company won a contract to build part of the Southeast Chord, on the path of which is a radioactive repository.
Origin source
Mostotrest, owned by Arkady Rotenberg, won the tender for the construction of a section of the Southeast Chord. The contract was published on April 6 on the public procurement website. A section from Kuryanovsky Boulevard to Kantemirovskaya Street, about two kilometers long, including a bridge across the Moscow River, the company will build for 24.1 billion rubles.

Nobody, except Mostotrest, applied for the tender. Therefore, the competition was declared invalid, and the contract was concluded with a single participant and at the maximum price.

Long time construction

In fact, Rotenberg's company began work long before the competition. An Open Media correspondent who visited a construction site in December 2019 found equipment there with the Mostotrest logo clogging supports for a future flyover. Although the information on the tender appeared on the public procurement website only on February 15, 2020.

Thus, representatives of Mostotrest, starting work at least two months before the competition, were confident in advance of their victory. The press service of the company was unable to promptly respond to a request from Open Media.

At that time, December 2019, Mostotrest did not have permits for its work. Therefore, the Moscow City Duma deputy Pavel Tarasov, who was on a construction site on December 21, 2019, even managed to stop her by calling the police. An employee of Mostotrest, foreman Igor Kuznetsov, went to the department to give explanations. However, the very next day, work continued as if nothing had happened.

Dirty slope

The site of the Southeast Chord became scandalous because it passes through the territory of a radioactive repository. In Soviet times, the Moscow Polymetal Plant dumped its waste onto the territory behind the fence for many years. Thus, on the banks of the Moscow River, near the Kolomenskoye park, a radioactive burial ground appeared.

The position of officials in this regard is ambiguous. Initially, they generally denied that the chord affected the infected area. So, in the environmental impact assessment (it was attached to the documentation on public procurement) it is said that no increased radiation was detected. But since there is a dangerous area nearby, the contractor is recommended to “minimize the implementation of work related to the movement of soil”.

However, in January 2020, Mayor Sergei Sobyanin acknowledged the problem. He promised to take out the radioactive soil first, and then build the SE. “Obviously, these works will require enormous costs,” Sobyanin wrote on his personal blog.

Later it turned out that Moscow allocated 80 million rubles to clean the slope. This will allow to utilize 10 cubic meters of radioactive waste and 450 cubic meters of contaminated soil, it follows from the conditions of the tender. Although the capital’s officials themselves a few years ago claimed that about 60 thousand cubic meters of radioactive ore dumps had been dumped near Kolomenskoye. If so, Moscow decided to clear only one hundredth of the burial ground. The Federal State Unitary Enterprise Radon is engaged in soil removal; it is due to finish work by mid-May.