From Krymskaya Embankment to Balchug Island: the banks of the Moskva River transformation

July 27
Parks and pedestrian areas

This week, the Moskva River Day was celebrated in the capital. Its decoration - the embankments, which have become a comfortable place for walking and cycling, jogging, meetings, and in summer also a real salvation from the heat.

In 2010, the city authorities launched a program of comprehensive development of the Moskva River banks. Thanks to it, 32 embankments with a length of almost 60 kilometers have already become comfortable places for recreation. Pedestrian spaces, observation decks, bike paths were equipped there, shrubs and trees were planted, benches and litter-boxes were installed.

Colored fountain and pedestrian ‘waves’ of the Krymskaya Embankment

The Krymskaya Embankment was the first to undergo landscaping (the work was completed in 2013). It became a continuation of Pushkinskaya, Andreevskaya and Vorobyevskaya Embankments and part of a walking route with a length of about 12 kilometers from Vorobyovy Gory and Gorky Park to the spit of Bolotny Island. There are pedestrian and walking paths on the embankment, special slides for skate boarders and cyclists.

Muscovites and tourists are fond of this embankment for the dry fountain with multi-colored lighting as well. About 200 sprayers can work in different modes: the water is jetted three meters high, then reach only half a meter.

In the art pavilions on the Krymskaya Embankment (this is a kind of 210-meter gallery along the Muzeon Art Park), almost 100 painters can show their works. Each painter has a premise with a section for storing paintings.

A recognizable architectural element here is the wave, the shape of which is repeated by pedestrian and bicycle paths, benches and the roof of the vernissage. Pedestrian ‘waves’ rise up to 0.3 meters, cycling - up to 1.5 meters. A wooden promenade with a length of about one kilometer runs through the entire park.

Frunzenskaya, Novodevichya and Luzhnetskaya embankments (from Novodevichya Embankment to the Luzhnetsky Metro Bridge) were improved in 2014-2015 (this is 6.5 kilometers), and in 2016 the Kremlyovskaya Embankment, which is almost a kilometer long, was reconstructed.

Transformation of 12 embankments

In 2017, 12 embankments were subjected to complex improvement at once - Yakimanskaya, Moskvoretskaya, Krasnopresnenskaya, Smolenskaya, Rostov, Savvinskaya, Kotelnicheskaya, Goncharnaya, Andreevskaya, Bolotnaya, Prechistenskaya, Luzhnetskaya (from the Luzhnetsky metro bridge to the Frunzenskaya Embankment).

Photo by Y. Ivanko.

"This made it possible to create a unique pedestrian route along the embankments of the Moskva River from the Moskva City business center to Taganskaya Square in terms of length and geography. Along Krasnopresnenskaya, Smolenskaya, Rostovskaya, Savvinskaya, Novodevichy Embankments, Khamovnichesky Val Street, then along Frunzenskaya, Prechistenskaya, Kremlevskaya, Moskvoretskaya, Kotelnicheskaya and Goncharnaya Embankments, you can walk about 19 kilometers," in the press service of the Construction Department of Moscow was told.

The improvement of the Yakimanskaya Embankment is one of the most interesting projects of 2017. The section from the Muzeon to the Patriarshy Bridge was closed to cars, it became a continuation of the Krymskaya Embankment. The width of the pedestrian zone here is more than 10 meters. And on the section from the Patriarshy to the Maly Kamenny Bridge there were sidewalks for walking in the direction of Balchug and Bolshaya Polyanka streets or along the Vodootvodny Canal - also more than 10 meters wide.


Of course, the embankments improvement projects are individual (for example, observation decks have been improved on Krasnopresnenskaya and Andreevskaya), but there are also common features: where possible, sidewalks were expanded and trees were planted so as to separate the walking and transport zones.

Photo by M. Denisov.

On the Luzhnetskaya Embankment, there are zones where you can walk, run, ride a bicycle and roller skates. The length of the race track with a special rubberized coating is three kilometers. The pedestrian part, located closer to the water, was paved with large tiles, and asphalt was laid on the paths for bicycles and roller skates. Along the embankment, in the shade of trees, six workout platforms were installed with outdoor fitness equipment and a coating of shock-absorbing rubber chips.

A new space near the water has also appeared here. Instead of a granite descent to the river, a wooden ladder made of specially treated larch was erected - you can play sports, sunbathe, read and just admire the Moskva River on its steps.

New garden squares, easy navigation and pleasant walks

In 2019, the Ovchinnikovskaya and Ozerkovskaya Embankments were improved in Zamoskvorechye, this is one of the final stages of the reconstruction of the streets in Zamoskvorechye and the historical center of Moscow. The work was carried out on an area of more than nine hectares. As a result, instead of two, one lane of traffic remained on the embankments, and new places of rest were arranged for pedestrians in the cleared place.

The overhead cable lines that spoiled the view were removed underground, the sidewalks were expanded and paved with granite tiles, the old curb stone was replaced with a new granite one. The storm sewer system was also updated. The lighting has improved - more than 170 street lights with energy-saving lamps have been installed here. The pavement on the roadway was updated, the parking space was reorganized, and modern bus shelters were equipped for public transport passengers. Benches and litter-boxes were installed, as well as information pylons.

In addition, two small garden squares were created there. In the green zone, at the intersection of Ovchinnikovskaya Embankment with Sadovnicheskiy Passage, you can relax while waiting for the tram. And the garden square between Sadovnicheskiy Bridge and Sredny Ovchinnikovsky Lane has become another comfortable urban space with benches and additional lighting.

About 1,300 shrubs and more than 100 trees were planted on the embankments, which visually separate the pedestrian zone from the roadway along the water.

By the way, the embankments of the Moskva River are transforming not only in the center of Moscow. For example, in 2019, a park was created in Kapotnya on the Moskva River bank, local dwellers have received a place for walking and recreation. Specialists cared with respect to the landscape: the wetlands were not artificially drained, but made part of the nature trails. They were mounted on stilts and lined with a terrace board. Lighting that turns on in the evening is safe for plants and animals.

The park on the embankment in Kapotnya became a continuation of the previously landscaped park of the 850th anniversary of Moscow in Maryino.


This year, work is going to be completed on the improvement of two embankments near the Kievsky railway station - Tarasa Shevchenko and Berezhkovskaya Embankments. A bicycle path with a length of 660 meters and a width of two meters has already been arranged on the Taras Shevchenko Embankment, another one with a length of 374 meters has appeared on the Berezhkovskaya embankment.

This year, the Sofiyskaya, Raushskaya, Sadovnicheskaya and Kosmodamianskaya Embankments, the adjacent to them Sadovnicheskaya Street, Komissariatsky, Faleevsky, Raushsky Lanes and Repin garden square will havea new look. The total area of improvement will be 22 hectares.

"One of the features of the Balchug Island improvement project is the conditional division of space into historical (along the line of houses) and modern ones (near the water). 540 new lighting poles with energy-saving lamps will be installed on the embankments. They will also emphasize this division: some will be manufactured in retro style (they will resemble gas ones), others - in a minimalistic one. The parapets of the embankments will be decorated with a special illumination of 544 lamps," the press service of the department informed.

Repin mini-park, opened in 1948, will also subjected to be transformed. It will have lanterns, benches and litter-boxes in the style of the late 40s of the last century. In addition, a new passage to the Bolotnaya Embankment will be arranged here. This will be a convenient route between the Sofiyskaya and Bolotnaya Embankments.

The main works are planned to be completed by September 2021.


Latest Events

Specialnyy pokaz k yubileyu Yu.B. Norshteyna

September 26

Sluchaynost i dogadka

September 29
If you continue to use our website, you are agreeing to accept the use of cookies on your device. Cookie files ensure the website’s efficiency and help us provide you with the most interesting and relevant information. Read more about cookie files.
Accept ccokies