Russia drawing up major infrastructure programme for 2018

Vitaly Mutko, chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ and Russia's Sports Minister, held a series of meetings in Moscow 27-30 November with the heads of all 11 regions which will be hosting matches during Russia 2018.

The meetings were attended by the heads of regional ministries involved in preparations for the tournament, the chief executives of city councils, experts from the Russia 2018 LOC and representatives of the relevant federal ministries and government departments.

The aim of the meetings was to draw up an exact list of the facilities to be included in the investment programme which will provide funds to develop the infrastructure required for the tournament.

The list of facilities included in the investment programme includes stadiums, training sites, team bases, airports, road infrastructure, hotels, security infrastructure, public utility and medical infrastructure, communications and information technology infrastructure, environmental facilities and the facilities required for the fan festivals. In total, the preliminary list for the investment programme covers around 1,000 facilities.

The final list of facilities which will receive funds under the investment programme will be submitted to the Russian government for its consideration. The investment programme is scheduled to be approved in the spring of 2013.

Delivering this programme successfully will guarantee a massive legacy in the form of modern sports, transport and general infrastructure for many generations of Russians.

"We've got a lot of work to do to put the infrastructure in place by the 2018 World Cup," Mutko told the meeting in his welcoming address. "Delivering this programme successfully will guarantee a massive legacy in the form of modern sports, transport and general infrastructure for many generations of Russians. But making sure that the infrastructure is used effectively once the tournament is over is something we need to concern ourselves with right now, while the facilities are still being planned and designed," he added.

In selecting facilities and projects for inclusion in the investment programme, specialists from the Ministry of Sport and the Russia 2018 LOC focused on striking a balance between considerations of cost, tournament quality and legacy.

As a result, the designs for the stadiums in some of the host cities will be based on using prefabricated structures, in order to meet the capacity requirements for the 2018 FIFA World Cup stadiums. These structures will be dismantled once the tournament is over, so that stadium capacities can be reduced to reflect the requirements of the host cities.

The same approach will be applied to the reconstruction of airports in a number of cities. In order to ensure the required throughout capacity, organisers are considering using temporary passenger terminals. At the same time, the host cities will draw on the experience of organisers of other major other sporting events which took a similar approach to infrastructure development. In particular, as part of the 'Observer' programme, representatives of the Russian host cities visited Kharkiv during UEFA EURO 2012 in order to study arrangements for a temporary terminal at the local airport.

The development of a major investment programme was one of the most important outcomes of 2012 for all those taking part in preparations for Russia 2018, along with the announcement of the host cities for the tournament. The investment programme to develop the infrastructure required for Russia 2018 will help make the tournament as successful as possible.