Whatever the weather, the capital’s residents are likely to have a much cooler summer than last year – all thanks to the City Hall.
The capital’s authorities have abolished the regulation obliging residents to apply (and in some cases even pay) for permission whenever they want to install an air-conditioning system.
During last year’s extreme heatwave, the endless air-conditioning red tape was getting on Muscovites’ nerves more than ever.
Back then, demand and prices for air coolers sky-rocketed. It was almost impossible to find a fan, let alone an air conditioner.
No wonder the lucky residents who managed to get hold of a much-desired gadget were furious when they found out that excessive paperwork could prevent many of them from enjoying their deserved bit of cool air straightaway.
The mass media reported that the actual reason behind the bureaucratic procedure was to draw bribes from residents. Red tape concerning the installation of an air conditioner could cost ten times more than the gadget itself, the GZT.ru on-line newspaper reports.
Initially, the regulation was aimed at getting rid of those conditioners that were allegedly spoiling the facades of the capital’s historic pearls.
Moscow mayor Sergey Sobyanin has promised to set special rules for installing air conditioners on buildings of historic importance.