City of Moscow Says it Has Shed Long-Held Ranking for World’s Worst Traffic

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Deputy Mayor Tells Urban Forum that City Also Gets Top Ratings for Urban Development and Improved Quality of Life

Moscow Urban Forum 2015

“Last year was the breaking point – we had moved up to the fourth spot from the bottom leaving behind Istanbul, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro (as the most congested cities in the world),” said Marat Khusnullin, Moscow deputy mayor of urban planning.

MOSCOW (Oct. 19, 2015) – Moscow has shed its long-time ranking as the city with the worst traffic in the world, thanks to an ambitious infrastructure development program that has reduced congestion by 16 percent and significantly improved quality of life, the city announced at its annual Moscow Urban Forum, held October 16-17 in Moscow.

During last week’s event, officials detailed the success so far of their 10-year, $20 billion urban development plan, which was enacted with the appointment of Mayor Sergei Sobyanin in 2010.

In fact, the city is now second only to Beijing in an independent rating of urban development and quality of life indicators in megacities, Marat Khusnullin, deputy mayor of urban planning, said.

"Every year we order an assessment, an international study, and this year it was done by PricewaterhouseCoopers,” Marat Khusnullin, deputy mayor of urban planning, told the forum last week.

“The study compares Moscow with 12 other major world cities in terms of urban development indicators. We compared ourselves to New York and London on all indicators, as this is what we should aim for. I can say that we lead the world by the average annual growth rate of quality office real estate, and by the average annual commercial real estate numbers we are second only to Beijing.”

The city also ranks third in the world for road construction, behind Beijing and Hong Kong, according to the report.

That helped Moscow finally drop its long-held distinction of most congested city in the world, according to city traffic researcher TomTom (

“Last year was the breaking point – we had moved up to the fourth spot from the bottom leaving behind Istanbul, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro,” said Khusnullin, who reported the city has reduced traffic congestion by 16 percent with more than 30 new subway lines, more than 400 kilometers of new roads and more than 112 new tunnels, overpasses and bridges.

The city’s social infrastructure program is also progressing at full speed in Moscow, he said. A total of 63 schools, 191 kindergartens, 25 new outpatient clinics and 24 healthcare facilities have been built since 2011.

“The polycentric urban region concept that was chosen by the direction from the Mayor of Moscow as the central city development strategy is working and paying off,” Khusnullin said.

“There have emerged a higher number of roads, convenient road junctions and metro stations, more jobs in outlying suburbs and an increased enrollment in kindergartens in the city. We have managed to significantly improve the quality of life in the city by the development of new housing, transportation and public infrastructure facilities. Living in Moscow has become more comfortable and better over five years.”

For more information please contact:
Max Smetannikov
+1 917 310 33 96

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