Compact City: How compact is Minsk?

A compact city should be effective in terms of urban planning

Project: Compact city. Fair and efficient urban development: a ‘compact city’ concept for Belarus (2017)

Based on statistical analysis and expert evaluation, we found out that Minsk residents prefer compact medium-level (5-7 floors) buildings to other types of development. In addition, they prefer housing, which is located closer to the center. While multi-storey buildings of the micro-district type does not have the same popularity. Such preferences tell us that the center of Minsk corresponds to the principles of compactness.

For obvious reasons, the offer of land near the city center is very limited. At the same time, there is a problem of unused areas within the city limits. Thus, more than 30% of the area of Minsk is occupied by industrial territories, which is much higher than the figure of other European capitals (5-6%).

On this basis, we can give the first recommendation to improve urban policy: it is necessary to ensure the demand for housing through the development of unused industrial areas.

Second recommendation. Urban planners should carry out point construction in areas of medium density, outside the city center, while not damaging the environment and the interests of local residents.

Third recommendation. It is necessary to abandon the development of the micro-district type and consider the possibility of moving to a diverse type of construction of medium height with simultaneous saturation of new blocks of infrastructure.

Fourth recommendation. We should develop and adopt a methodology for calculating the socio-economic impact of infrastructure projects.


In general, Minsk can be recognized as a compact, but urban development can be even more effective.


The full text of the study is presented here (in Russian).


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