Administrative divisions and government

Government

Moscow is the seat of power for the Russian Federation. At the centre of the city, in Central Administrative Okrug, is the Moscow Kremlin, which houses the home of the President of Russia as well as many of the facilities for the national government. This includes numerous military headquarters and the headquarters of the Moscow Military District. Moscow, like with any national capital, is also the host of all the foreign embassies and diplomats representing a multitude of nations in Russia. Moscow is designated as one of only two Federal cities of Russia (the other one being Saint Petersburg). Among the 83 federal subjects of Russia, Moscow represents the most populated one and the smallest one in terms of area. Lastly, Moscow is located within the central economic region, one of twelve regions within Russia with similar economic goals.

Administrative divisions

Moscow Guide - General Information

Administrative okrug of Moscow:

1. City of Zelenograd
2. Northern
3. North-Eastern
4. North-Western
5. Central
6. Eastern
7. South-Eastern
8. Southern
9. South-Western
10. Western

Northern part of Moscow with Ostankino Tower, Monument to the Conquerors of Space and Prospekt Mira

The entire city of Moscow is headed by one mayor (Sergey Sobyanin). The city of Moscow is divided into 10 administrative okrugs and 123 districts.

The Russian capital's specific town-planning development began to show as early as the 12th century, when the city was founded. The central part of Moscow grew by consolidating with suburbs in line with the medieval principles of urban development, when strong fortress walls would gradually gird along the circle streets of adjacent new settlements. The first circular defense walls set the trajectory of Moscow's rings, laying the groundwork for future town-planning of the Russian capital.

The following fortifications served as the city's circular defense boundaries at some point in history: the Kremlin walls, Zemlyanoy Gorod (earthwork town), the Kamer-Kollezhsky Rampart, the Garden Ring, and the small railway ring. The Moscow Automobile Ring Road (MKAD) has been Moscow's boundary since 1960. Also in the form of a circle are the main Moscow subway line, the Ring Line, and the so-called Third Automobile Ring, which was completed in 2005. Hence, the characteristic radial-circle planning continues to define Moscow's further development. However, contemporary Moscow has also engulfed a number of territories outside the MKAD, such as Solntsevo, Butovo, and the town of Zelenograd.

All administrative okrugs and districts have their own coats of arms and flags as well as the head officials.

In addition to the districts, there are Territorial Units with Special Status. These usually include areas with small or no permanent populations, such as the case with the All-Russia Exhibition Center, the Botanical Garden, large parks, and industrial zones. In recent years, some territories have been merged with different districts. There are no ethnic-specific regions in Moscow, as in the Chinatowns that exist in some North American and East Asian cities. And although districts are not designated by income, as with most cities, those areas that are closer to the city center, metro stations or green zones are considered more prestigious.

Moscow also hosts some of the government bodies of Moscow Oblast, although the city itself is administratively separate from the oblast.

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