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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 October 2005, 15:30 GMT 16:30 UK
Russia plans 'millionaires' town'
The new town is set to rise on a bend in the Moscow River

Keeping up with the Jones's could take on a whole new meaning in a town being planned for rich Russians near Moscow.

The $3bn (1.7bn) town of Rublyovo-Arkhangelskoye will house some 30,000 residents and is expected to be almost twice the size of Monaco.

It will be completely self-sufficient, boasting luxurious villas, a clinic, bars, sports facilities, a school and a marina on the Moscow River.

The project, due to start in 2006, is being financed by Nafta Moskva company.

Russian 'Amsterdam'

"Building elite apartments outside an industrial metropolis reflects a new tendency favoured by buyers," said Michael Belton, CEO of the project's developer, CMI Development, in a recent press release.

The 430-hectare (1,060-acre) development site is situated three kilometres (two miles) to the west of Moscow and has good transport links with the capital.

The future "millionaires' town" will have "a uniquely European feel", according to its British architects, John Thompson and Partners.

"We are trying to make it in the architectural style of old European cities like Prague, Amsterdam and Munich," Viktor Novichkov, a director of the project, told Britain's The Times newspaper.

It is estimated that Moscow alone has more than 30 dollar billionaires, vying for the top spot with London and New York.

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