Royal sponsorship courted for Siberian eco-city

An unusual petition has been addressed to Prince Charles requesting him to help raise funds to construct an eco-city in remote eastern Siberia.

­The plans is the brainchild of Russian architects from the Ab Ellis bureau, and aims to create what is dubbed “Ecocity 2020” in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia).

The architects want to locate the city close to the town of Mirny, at the site of the Mir mine, the second-largest excavation in the world, after Bingham Canyon Mine. The colossal open-cast diamond pit is about 550 meters deep and over 1,000 meters in diameter.

State-of-the-art technology is at the core of the revolutionary project which suggests that a translucent dome should cover the pit, thus creating a multi-level city with residential and recreational areas which could house up to 100,000 people.

“The Ecocity will become a magnet for population and tourists from all over the world to eastern Siberia,”
Project Director Nikolay Lyutomsky believes.

He was also quoted as saying that the project could cost as much as $5 billion – a sum which, according to the architect, is simply not to be found in Russia.

“There’s been a global interest in the treasures of Yakutia, so our investors are not so important. We’ve already tried to get in touch with the Yakutian authorities. At first, they expressed some interest but then got scared. A high-caliber sponsor is wanted there,” he told RIA news agency.

Lyutomsky wrote the letter to the Prince of Wales, hoping against hope. “If His Majesty responds, it will be just marvelous.”

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