30 October, 2013
Gorky Park (Парк Горького) is an eco-friendly recreational zone in Moscow, and one of the biggest parks of the city. It is located just across the Moskva river (Река Москва) from Park Kultury metro station.
The park was opened in 1928, named after Maxim Gorky (Максим Горкий). Konstantin Melnikov, a famous Soviet avant-garde architect, was responsible for the project. The park was created by the amalgamation of previous gardens. In the Soviet era, it used to be an amusement park with fairs, rollercoaster rides and a panoramic wheel.
Over the years the rides became decrepit, and other cheap attractions and cafés took their place. Most notably, the park underwent a major reconstruction in 2011, with the aim of making it eco-friendly. All the amusement rides have been removed, and the entrance fee was canceled. Instead of the outdated carnival rides and junk food stalls, Gorky Park now hosts sport activities: aerobic, yoga, salsa, beach volley. The freezing of the river still allows ice-skating during the winter.
With its creative new spaces and commodities, such as an open-air cinema theatre, contemporary art projects, design fairs and free wi-fi, Gorky Park stands now as one of the most popular places in Moscow.