Espro Group announced the opening of the Mastergrad children’s theme park in St. Petersburg. A park called Mastergrad with the total area of 5,400 sq. m will be opened in the PITERLAND multifunctional shopping and entertainment mall. A lease agreement was signed for a 10-year term. Jones Lang LaSalle acted as an advisor of that transaction. Espro Group schedules the park opening for the end of the Q IV 2012 – beginning of the Q I 2013. The project budget is about €10.5 million, the payback period is 7 years.
We would like to remind that in January of this year Espro Group announced its plans of launching the Masterslavl children’s theme park in Moscow that will be opened in late 2012 in the Evolution Tower multifunctional complex. Hence, the St. Petersburg project will become the second one in Russia.
Like Masterslavl, Mastergrad will be a unique Town created for children and opening them the world of adult professions. There will be about 50 workshops in the Town each of which will familiarize children with various specialties. As in adult life, children will be able to work in the workshops and receive a ‘salary’ for their labor to be paid in the Town’s own currency. Mastergrad will have its own court, taxing inspectorate, bank, social services, theater, research laboratories, and creative and production workshops in which children will mix with each other, perform joint assignments, learn collective responsibility and interaction in society. It is important that everything occurring in the Town will be based on initiative and mutual respect. Close attention in the project is paid to teaching children charity principles and to inclusive leisure with the involvement of children with challenges.
“When we only were beginning to work on the Moscow project, we considered some ideas of opening similar parks in other cities of Russia but came to the opinion that it would be more correct to launch projects gradually, having completed one to start another, says Roman Klimov, Mastergrad Project Manager and representative of Espro Group. Nevertheless, having viewed the PITERLAND project concept, we decided to begin building there a children’s town without waiting for the launch of the Moscow project. We discarded all doubts thanks to the uniqueness of the ground that allows carrying into effect almost any of our cherished dreams starting with the Town architecture and ending with the sporting kinds of entertainment not represented in Russia so far.”
Vitaliy Kozhin, General Director of the PITERLAND company noted: “It is my view that Mastergrad is a topical teaching and entertaining project for children. No particular attention has been paid to this niche for a long time and currently it has no analogues in Russia. For me a social component is important in any project and it is present here. The occupational guidance and adaptation of children to adult life that will take place in Mastergrad territory in the form of games will become a good help for parents in education and for children in their formation during life. I reckon a good project of a new format as modern and opportune for my native city.”
Stanislav Bilen, Senior Advisor of Jones Lang LaSalle in St. Petersburg commented: “Recently a tendency to diversified formation of children’s zones has grown. If before standard operators of children’s entertainments available in a shopping and entertainment malls were considered sufficient, now a format becomes more and more popular in which little visitors are proposed not only entertainments but also training. Mastergrad will become the St. Petersburg’s largest children’s entertainment center of a new format. Additional thanks to the amount of investments to the project that will make it one of the best in Europe. That is why I am sure that the new center will be very popular among the PITERLAND shopping and entertainment mall visitors.”
In Russia similar children’s theme parks are not represented so far (except for several small projects), however they are widely spread all over the world. The difference of the parks on which Espro Group is working is a deeper immersion of children into the professional world: having visited the basic class, the child will be able to complete additional training in the specialty he liked in the master class and subsequently visit the occupational guidance courses. The educating and diverting programs are developed in cooperation with specialized educational institutions. Close attention is paid to the park stylistic decoration: this will be a modern Russian town with the architectural look of which was formed in the XIX century.
Ivan Potekhin, General Director of Espro Group told about the nearest plans of the children’s theme park project implementation: “Cooperation with the guardians (sponsors) of the future town is an important particularity of this project. Well-known international and Russian companies are involved in the project which will be able to participate in the town life, including workshop programs development, thus fostering future consumers’ interest in their brand from childhood. At the same time the task of our project is much wider: to open the world of wonderful professions to children, teach them joint creative work, retain the educational traditions of the Russian pedagogic school.”âåðíóòüñÿ