Olympic Construction Sins: The Leaning Houses of Sochi

Red Eft

Former Staff
May 2007
Vladimir Putin promised the Olympics in Sochi would be as green as could be. Instead, the construction of facilities has had disastrous consequences for the environment, particularly for the residents of Baku Street, whose homes have become the victims of man-made erosion.

When Tigran Skiba, 52, leaves home in his delivery truck each morning to supply fresh bread throughout Sochi, he gets a view of the new sporting facilities: Fisht Olympic Stadium in the valley and the grand ice-skating palace, which shimmers in the moonlight like a pearl. It looks as if it's all right nextdoor.

Oympia Park is located less than two kilometers away from Skiba's home. What worries him these days, though, is the fact that this distance isn't remaining constant. The space between his home and the stadium is decreasing, slowly but ever so surely. The hillside upon which his home is built is sliding down into the valley at a pace of 1.5 meters (nearly five feet) per year, Skiba claims.

Environmental Damage and Botched Construction Mar Sochi - SPIEGEL ONLINE