The struggle for big and beautiful, free from residential development lakes on the southern Osokorky began back in 2005-2006, when the local inhabitants demolished the first fence, by which the developer fenced off the access to Nebrezh lake. The closure of the passage to the lake caused then a considerable indignation on the part of the local community. The fence was broken and burned, and the developer retreated.
The financial crisis of 2008 and the collapse of the real estate market began shortly, so the development of the southern Osokorky was postponed for an indefinite period of time. However, the developer continued to prepare the ground for future large-scale residential development. In 2009, at the time of Mayor Chernovetskyi and his odious “young team” at 3 o’clock in the night, out of thin air, the scandalous “Detailed Plan of Osokorky District Territory (DPT)” was accepted in total contradiction with the current General Layout of the city, and allowed residential development of the entire area around Nebrezh lake, where, according to the General Layout a large recreational water park complex was designed.
In 2015, as soon as electronic petition service was launched in Kyiv, an electronic petition was filed to the City Council demanding to stop construction on the lakes of the southern Osokorky and create a large regional landscape park “Ecopark Osokorky” in this area, which will preserve both lakes and unique floodplain meadows located behind the lakes to the south. The petition quickly gained 11,150 votes with a minimum of 10,000 votes required.
More than two years have passed since the petition was filed. During this time, a working group was set up that considered and studied the issues raised in the Petition, more than ten meetings of Kyiv City Council committees were held, representatives of the Ministry of Ecology, of the Department of Architecture at Kyiv City State Administration, the Administration of Tourism at Kyiv City State Administration, non-governmental organizations, etc. spoke up in this regard. In particular, scientists from non-governmental environmental organizations prepared a scientific substantiation of the southern Osokorky territory value and the need to create a regional landscape park on it. All officials involved in the consideration of the petition unanimously supported it, realizing that the development of the city south of Kolektorna Street will inevitably destroy the natural complex of lakes in the southern Osokorky and the unique ecosystem of floodplain grasslands behind them, as a result of which the recreational and tourist potential of this area will be lost forever.
Despite the fact that although Kyiv city Mayor and all commissions that considered Petition formally supported it, neither Kyiv City Council, nor Kyiv City State Administration took any steps towards its implementation. At present, the City Administration in no way opposes the illegal construction of lakes in the southern Osokorky.
Not wishing to put up with the arbitrariness of developers, the activists united and created the Public Organization “Ecopark Osokorky”, which, with the help of lawyers, collected the relevant documentary material and filed a petition with the Prosecutor’s Office of Kyiv city demanding to stop the illegal construction on more than 300 hectares of lakes and meadows in the southern Osokorky.
In a large-scale land transaction in the southern Osokorky, absolutely everything was illegal from the get go, from presenting the issue to the Land Commission of Kyiv City Council, where then- Deputy Head of the Land Commission pushed the allotment of 176 hectares of Kyiv land to the newly formed company belonging to her husband, to obtaining the land allotment approval, which in reality did not exist. And then-mayor Omelchenko substituted the collective decision of Kyiv City Council with his sole decision, which contravened the law. This one fact only renders land lease agreements on the southern Osokorky worthless. However, neither the Prosecutor’s Office, nor Kyiv City Council pay attention to this. Therefore, activists of “Ecopark Osokorky” NGO also filed a petition to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine regarding the inactivity of the relevant law enforcement agencies.
In September 2017 the developer started illegal construction work on the banks of Nebrezh lake. In response, activists of “Ecopark Osokorky”, NGO began to block attempts of the developer to build within the coastal protective lane of Nebrezh lake, which is expressly prohibited by the Water Code of Ukraine.
“Ecopark Osokorky”, NGO demands to immediately cease illegal construction work in the coastal protective lane of Nebrezh lake, to cancel worthless land lease agreements in the southern Osokorky, to cancel the decision on approval of the “Detailed Plan of Osokorky District Territory” and to cancel all permits and approvals issued to the developer, since they were issued on the basis of invalid land lease agreements.
The City Council should return to the city community and Osokorky and Pozniaky more than 300 hectares of unique recreational territories for creating a park and active recreation of Kyiv residents in nature.
Activists urge all indifferent Kyivans to join the protest actions and by personal involvement support the blocking of illegal construction on Osokorky, which will have devastating and irreversible consequences for the environment of the district and the city.