Almost a century after Tsarist-era spending came to an end, St. Petersburg is embarking on a new golden age. This time, Russia’s new energy wealth is funding $50 billion in infrastructure projects that will bring Peter the Great’s “Window on Europe” into the 21st century.
By 2020, the city is to have an office tower taller than any in Europe today, a new international airport busier than any in Scandinavia today, and a cruise ship port with more berths than any cruise port of call in the world.
To ease transportation bottlenecks, St. Petersburg is doubling the underground subway system and plans to build a 72-kilometer elevated rail system. Construction crews are building a $3 billion container port, a 116-km ring road, and a 46-km north-south bypass toll road, to speed highway traffic between Finland and Moscow.