SPECTACULAR COSMOS THEME PARK
Realization of the scale project, called to revive interest of Russians to a problem of space exploration, have started in Saint-Petersburg.
To our regret it may be forgotten that it was our country – Russia – who paved the way to the stars, the way the mankind follows. The romanticism of the first years of the Space Age has been replaced by the pragmatism of our days and the danger that in 10-20 years there will possibly be nobody to continue the work started formerly by Korolev, Glushko, Yangel and their comrades-in-arms, is quite real.
At the same time there are the people who are not indifferent to a glorious “space” past of our country and who strive to keep the traditions, to attract the young people to cosmonautics, create the ground for realization of new ambitious programs on Universe study. In order to accomplish those tasks the project of creation of “Cosmos” museum-park was born on the Neva river-bank.
The concept of this unique (to Russia) complex combining entertaining, scientific-educational and business centres had been suggested by member of Russian Academy of Sciences Vitaly Lopota, director and chief designer of the central research an development institute of robotics and technical cybernetics (TzNII RTK).
But the first step to creation of the park “Cosmos” was done only on the 13th of January 2004, when Valentina Matvienko, the governor of “North capital” of those days, signed necessary documents and the idea of construction project began finding its real shape.
The draft of the complex to be built in Kalininsky district of Saint-Petersburg has been worked out by “Vitruvy and sons” architecture workshop. The project utilizes reconstructed buildings of TzNII RTK and the adjacent territory of a public garden: it’s made by the “city inside the city” principle and includes many transport, trade, hotel, museum, business and entertainment structures.
In the centre of the composition there’ll be an oval building consisting of four levels, shaped like a “flying saucer” and covered with silvery metal.
It’s intended to place there the modern attractions, which imitate space travels. Numerous laser rays will impart an unearthly outline to the landscape and create additional highlight of the complex’s buildings.
There’ll be a leisure centre and five cinema halls on the second and the third levels of the building. And there’ll be a water jet placed on the roof to cover all the complex with cloud of a mist spray. The visitors of the museum will see at the models of satellites and interplanetary stations, will trace the evolution of human’s imagination about space and the Universe, will observe the heavens through telescopes of a mini-observatory, will find out what is happening in Earth orbit in real time mode and look at the space photos of our planet.
The rocketry exposition comprising the main Soviet/Russian boosters like “Sojuz”,”Cosmos”, “Proton” and “Energya-Buran” system will be situated on open areas. Building a 860 space car park, trade pavilions, restaurants and cafes is also envisaged.
The complex’s area will be 10,8 hectares, the projected number of visitors will be about 2 million a year.
There is not so much time left when the work starts on the building ground. And the park will meet its first visitors approximately in 2007, on the threshold of the 50-year anniversary of the beginning of a space age.
("Spaceflight", Vol. 46, № 6, June 2004, p. 253).