|Roman Catholic Church at park “Kotovka”: an expert opinion|
|Friday, 11 November 2016 12:22|
The chairman of non-governmental organization “Belarusian public-service organization of cultural heritage and legacy protection” Anton Astapovich expressed his opinion to Catholic.by about a roman catholic church construction at park “Kotovka”.
The Minsk parish of Saints Peter and Paul and Saint Eugène de Mazenod gained admittance to build a church. The building site allotted by the government is located at the district so called Selhozposelok at the site named as park “Kotovka”.
Green area amounts to three hectares. The piece of ground allotted to the parish amounts to approximately 10% of the gross area, while the actual church is planned to occupy around 1,5% of the territory. Building surrounding grounds will be opened for visiting throughout the day for everyone not only for believers.
According to the design approved by the “Zelenstroy” it’s necessary to dig of 49 trees before construction, instead of dug-out trees 56 trees will be planted elsewhere.
However, local community which clamours against trees digging up is upset over this subject.
Catholic.by asked the chairman of non-governmental organization “Belarusian public-service organization of cultural heritage and legacy protection” Anton Astapovich to comment on situation.
— “Kotovka” will be overbuilt without this. As you know nature abhors a vacuum. Undeveloped real estate becomes built-up in no time especially in the city with dynamic urbanistic activities. Often even guarding regulations can’t change the situation.
Primarily general plan adjustments or local area development plan adjustments are made, territory functional use becomes changed and as a consequence the construction begins.
In such a manner park “Kotovka” won’t exist, it will be replaced with apartment block or with shopping centre.
If authorities bar the parish from allotting an area, the chances of church construction will be extended without date. Now there is constructible surface shortage in Minsk, the more so, because Catholic Church is an applicant.
Catholic.by: What incisive comments do you have about complaints expressed on the subject of construction lawfulness at park?
A. A.: The petition of contradictors who are against church construction at park “Kotovka” is based on regulatory, technical and city-planning documents which are not operational.
Now general plan approved in 2016 is in force. Contradictors make reference to the general plan of 2003. You must admit it's odd. They also use Public Debate Statement that was approved in 2006 by Minsk City Executive Committee, but from 2011 there is Statement affirmed by Council of Ministers with amendments and additions incorporated in 2014. There is no sense in further analyzing because one manipulation is enough to ignore the whole document.
The reaction of locals is natural. In Minsk the cases of both building land allotment and investment projects are considered to be not very clear so every step of authorities are perceived judiciously.
Catholic.by: What do you think about roman catholic church construction at park “Kotovka”?
А.А.: Frankly speaking I don’t see a great problem of the magnitude that our tree huggers present. It’s no big deal if the part of park “Kotovka” is going to be taken by a church and its improved land.
Moreover this territory is occupied by poplar that is low-value timber species and renewable resource. So I think this battle is just an action for the sake of an action.
|Updated Monday, 12 December 2016 17:22|