MOSCOW, October 14 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Culture Ministry has complained to prosecutors about the St. Petersburg authorities' approval of plans for a skyscraper in the city's historic center, a business daily said on Wednesday.
Governor Valentina Matviyenko gave approval for the Gazprom-led project in late September despite the city's historic center being a UNESCO World Heritage site.
According to Kommersant, Russian Culture Minister Alexander Avdeyev submitted a report by Russia's cultural heritage watchdog to a local prosecutor last week, although no details were disclosed at the time. The Roskhrankultura report said it was unlawful to build the 403-meter Okhta business center.
The regulator said the construction of the tower would violate at least two laws, the paper reported.
First, the potential construction site includes a historical monument, the Swedish Nienshants fortress, which is protected under a 2001 law as a special zone in which buildings can be no taller than 40 meters.
The other major violation occurred on September 1 at public hearings on the increase in the height of the Okhta tower to 403 meters from 100 meters. Participants complained about "aggression" on the part of the police and "physical pressure" by "young men" against opponents of the project.
Hundreds of people gathered in St. Petersburg on Saturday to protest against the proposed skyscraper.