An American geographer and Russian ecologist discuss current and prospective environmental hazards precipitated by large-scale infrastructure projects on Russia's southern coast of the Gulf of Finland. The region, investigated by both authors during the course of regular field research from 1999 to 2009, is one of the best environmentally preserved coastlines of the Baltic Sea with abundant potential greenfield sites, largely due to its closed-border-zone status during the Soviet period. A favorable location for trade also places the region under intense development pressure. The authors devote particular attention to two major developments, a multifunctional port complex (which inter alia serves as a major pipeline terminus and oil export port) and expansion of an existing nuclear power plant. Based on extensive personal observations and government documents, they analyze the emerging environmental threat posed by these initiatives as well as the challenging political environment that discourages public participation and local involvement in spatial planning.