Oleksii Pedosenko on the reconstruction of Ukraine

24 July 2023. Oleksii Pedosenko is a Masters student in Regional and Urban Planning at the London School of Economics and an M100 alumnus. In an article for the RICS Journal, which provides expert insight into key issues in the built environment, construction, property and surveying, he reflects on the reconstruction of his homeland Ukraine. Reconstruction is needed on a scale not seen since the Marshall Plan after the Second World War. “The World Bank’s estimate for the cost of reconstruction and recovery of Ukraine is currently US$411bn, more than two-and-a-half times higher than the country’s estimated GDP for 2022,” writes Oleksii. “And this figure does not take into account the recent destruction of the Kakhovka dam on the Dnieper river and subsequent flooding downstream.”

Strategic planning and efforts to secure international funding for reconstruction have already begun. But there is much to consider and think about, as Ukraine is fundamentally different in its overall structure and ownership from, say, Germany. For example, he sees the biggest potential problem in Ukrainian planning in privately owned land adjacent to cities. Because: “There is no green belt designation in Ukraine. Owners are allowed to apply to change the use to commercial, industrial or even residential, which may lead to a development boom on the city fringes and significant sprawl”.

As an urban planner, Oleksii is most interested in “how the reconstruction can be carried out and how the policies for it are designed. What are the basic social, economic and political structures needed in the country for the revival of destroyed settlements? How could agricultural land on the outskirts of cities be allocated for planned development to accommodate a growing population and ensure the supply of essential food? And how could the land value increases that inevitably occur in such situations be used to finance essential urban infrastructure? And how Ukraine’s land resources can be better used to support the country’s reconstruction.
You can read Oleksii Pedosenko’s full text here.