Baikonur, formerly known as Leninsk, is a city of republic significance in Kazakhstan on the northern bank of the Syr Darya river, rented and administered by the Russian Federation as an enclave. It was constructed to service the Baikonur Cosmodrome and was officially renamed Baikonur by Russian president Boris Yeltsin on December 20, 1995. During the Soviet period, it was sometimes referred to as Звездоград, Russian for 'Star City'. In 2009, the population of Baikonur was 36,175, while in 1999, it was 28,776. The rented area is an ellipse measuring 90 kilometres east to west by 85 km north to south, with the cosmodrome situated at the area's centre.