Silicon park in Siberia

Architectural concept of specific economical zone in Tomsk, completed by architects from ABD early this year, summarizes experience of construction of offices and business-parks which is considerable in this architectural company. From the combination of this experience and urban-planning task there shaped a "park of high technologies”, which combines capabilities of a fine modern office and popular today architecture with the old good idea of a garden-city

author pht

Written by:
Julia Tarabarina

11 November 2008
Architectural concept of technology development special economic zone, Tomsk
Russia, Tomsk

Project Team:
B.Levyant, B.Stuchebrukov, S.Kruchkov, N.Barabanov, L.Mikishev, V.Lagunov, E. Shestakova, Y.Golubeva, A.Gorovoi, I.Levyant in participation of M. Zinina

2007 — 2007

client-developer: OAO "OEZ TBT "Tomsk"

Specific economical zone is a special territory where some taxes and custom charges are lower for development of an important for the country sector. Today, there are 15 special economic zones in Russia, four of them are technology development special economic zones. There is also tourist and industrial, probably, soon there will be such port areas. Technology development zones are like "scientific" elite and their comparison with Soviet scientific towns seems quite proper. Though very likely it is more productive would be comparison to the well-known American “Silicone valley”.

So, there are four new scientific towns planned in Russia where taxes will be lower in order to develop science and to introduce it into production. For the state account there will be constructed engineering communications and first buildings. Then investors-residents will be building, but they will have to do that according to the general musterplan. Having in return comfortable conditions and tax privileges. There are three such towns are based in the European part – in Zelenograd, Dubna and Petersburg. And there is the only one in Siberia, in Tomsk.

Tomsk was a reasonable choice. The city is well-known for two things – lacy wooden architecture and scientific discoveries. Recently, for example, Tomsk scientists have invented a new method of restoration of destroyed brain tissue. This city has 8 universities and an Academic town which belongs to the Siberian department of the Russian Academy of Science. It is located within the city, but on a plan looks like a military base – it is surrounded with forests and just one road is connecting it with the city. Outside academic town is like typical Brezhnev city block – it has common 5storey buildings of grey silicate brick dashed by spots of wild cedar forest.

New Tomsk scientific town be located nearby the existing one, to the southeast from it, and will take a part of reserve territories of the Siberian Russian Academy of Science (in total 192 ha). The nearest neighbors are countryside sites which is actively bringing under this green part of the city, and also forests protected by ecologists and wandering small river Ushaika running into Tom river. Therefore the district is registered as urban, it looks quite countryside and bucolic. Besides, it is academic – the new scientific town is under construction beside the old one and looks like its extension.

The masterplan developed by the architectural company of Boris Levyant, diligently uses all aldvantages of the district, as well as the protected forests, three large fragments of which will be a part of new scientific town. And also a complex relief with difference about 60 m – following irregularity of landscape, architects have planned five kinds of nature zones, including an Alpine village on one of the "natural" branches of the small town.

Frankly, somehow it is strange to call it a town – so picturesque this new growth in the project of architects ABD is. Unlike a scientific town surrounded from the three sides by roads like walls, territory of special economic zone, to the contrary, is thread on its basic route like an axis. This main route, under which there will pass key underground communications, is transformed into a boulevard with trees and wide green strip, dividing roads in the middle into left and right strips. Around of the basic route there are sites of main working buildings – they will be occupied by residents OEZ (there are already 90 applications received). According to design, working buildings will be of two type: office (for programming specialist and IT-specialists) and scientific-technical, for pilot productions.

In east part the basic route branches out into two, echoing outlines of the site in order to regularly fulfill the entire territory. Near the crossroad and in two other spots the architects have planned "social and service" areas that have everything that makes life of working people comfortable: cafes, shops, sports halls, fitness, saunas and so forth. Public centers are placed so that from any part of working territory it was easy to reach them. Each center joins a natural zone so that one after sports activities could take a walk in the open air.

Aside the main axis there is planned the second additional one – the road leading to the residential zone and uniting residential buildings around. Both axes are curving picturesquely bent, following equally the relief and twists of complex outlines of the site – at the same time supporting image of unostentatious quiet natural picturesqueness.

Residential space is a separate topic. The thing is that the law does not allow constructing residential buildings in special economic zones. However, people who will work there, need to have a place to live. The state customer suggested not project residential spaces at all, saying that employees can get to the workplace from Tomsk. But Boris Levyant managed to convince the client that it is more convenient for workers of IT-sphere to live nearby the workplace, many of experts will probably be invited. The houses were designed as aparthotels for temporary living, there are 2 types – cottages and 5storeyed houses.

Boris Levyant defines genre of the project as a “park of high technologies” – like business-parks, in designing and construction of which architects ABD have a significant experience (business-park in Krylatskoe is already completed, business-park “the Western gate” on crossing of highway Mozhaiskoe and MKAD now is under construction). This experience in Tomsk has got new, greater scale and as consequence – new quality which could be described as “town-planning".

Easy to sea, having broadened frames of the typology business-park, architects from ABD have designed version of an ideal city for a special economic zone. It is most close to the idea of a garden-city which appeared in XIX century and which have been exciting minds of town-planners for all further time. Nature in this project is cultivated, but rather in English manner, than in French, with preservation and even underlining its naturalness. They let it inside the settlement, leaving in the form of a small forest, or turn into Alpine village and providing residents inhabitants with variety of impressions. Also it gives sensation of open space and some degree of freedom. The garden-city borders with the English garden and further smoothly passes into the Siberian wood.

There are another peculiarities to be marked. First, the project is definitely urban-planning – here on an empty space will be if not “city in city”, then a new microdistrict with its own laws and own customs. Secondly, architects ABD design it from their extensive experience of office and business-park constructing. Their architectural concept they filled with economic appendix, with financial structure and the analysis of project’s profitableness. With a huge number of figures and tables. This is called the concept of territory progress – and is beyond architectural work. “This project is rather of economical and political kind” – said Boris Levyant. So, the experience of architectural company ABD which a lot and effectively is engaged into construction of offices, working with the state project passed in the new quality. Constant interest of architects to adjacent spheres allowed them to approach the town-planning task from different points, and the work went out of architectural borders. When it comes to such specific economical urban-planning of a special economic zone, this must be considered fine. In other words, if we really want those large foreign investors would come to Tomsk from the high technology spheres then ABD architects have been a lucky choice.


Architectural concept of technology development special economic zone, Tomsk
Russia, Tomsk

Project Team:
B.Levyant, B.Stuchebrukov, S.Kruchkov, N.Barabanov, L.Mikishev, V.Lagunov, E. Shestakova, Y.Golubeva, A.Gorovoi, I.Levyant in participation of M. Zinina

2007 — 2007

client-developer: OAO "OEZ TBT "Tomsk"

11 November 2008

author pht

Written by:

Julia Tarabarina
Headlines now
​In Three Voices
The high-rise – 41 stories high – housing complex HIDE is being built on the bank of the Setun River, near the Poklonnaya Mountain. It consists of three towers of equal height, yet interpreted in three different ways. One of the towers, the most conspicuous one looks as if it was twisted in a spiral, composed of a multitude of golden bay windows.
​In the Space of Pobedy Park
In the project of a housing complex designed by Sergey Skuratov, which is now being built near the park of the Poklonnaya Hill, a multifunctional stylobate is turned into a compound city space with intriguing “access” slopes that also take on the role of mini-plazas. The architecture of the residential buildings responds to the proximity of the Pobedy Park, on the one hand, “dissolving in the air”, and, on the other hand, supporting the memorial complex rhythmically and color-wise.
​Dynamics of the Avenue
On Leningrad Avenue, not far away from the Sokol metro station, the construction of the A-Class business center Alcon II has been completed. ADM architects designed the main façade as three volumetric ribbons, as if the busy traffic of the avenue “shook” the matter sending large waves through it.
​Steamer at the Pier
An apartment hotel that looks like a ship with wide decks has been designed for a land plot on a lake shore in Moscow’s South Tushino. This “steamer” house, overlooking the lake and the river port, does indeed look as if it were ready to sail away.
The Magic of Rhythm or Ornament as a Theme
Designed by Sergey Tchoban, the housing complex Veren Place in St. Petersburg is the perfect example of inserting a new building into a historical city, and one the cases of implementing the strategy that the architect presented a few years ago in the book, which he coauthored with Vladimir Sedov, called “30:70. Architecture as a Balance of Forces”.
​Walking on Water
In the nearest future, the Marc Chagall Embankment will be turned into Moscow’s largest riverside park with green promenades, cycling and jogging trails, a spa center on water, a water garden, and sculptural pavilions designed in the spirit of the Russian avant-garde artists of the 1920, and, first of all, Chagall himself. In this issue, we are covering the second-stage project.
​Architectural Laboratory
A-Len has developed and patented the “Perfect Apartments” program, which totally eliminates “bad” apartment layouts. In this article, we are sharing how this program came around, what it is about, who can benefit from it, and how.
​“Architectural Archaeology of the Narkomfin Building”: the Recap
One of the most important events of 2020 has been the completion of the long-awaited restoration of the monument of Soviet avant-garde architecture – the Narkomfin Building, the progenitor of the typology of social housing in this country. The house retained its residential function as the main one, alongside with a number of artifacts and restoration clearances turned into living museum exhibits.
​LIFE on the Setun River
The area in the valley of the Setun River near the Vereiskaya Street got two new blocks of the “LIFE-Kutuzovsky” housing complex, designed by ADM architects. The two new blocks have a retail boulevard of their own, and a small riverside park.
​Celestial Tectonics
Three towers on a podium over the Ramenka River are the new dominant elements on the edge of a Soviet “microdistrict”. Their scale is quite modern: the height is 176 m – almost a skyscraper; the facades are made of glass and steel. Their graceful proportions are emphasized by a strict white grid, and the volumetric composition picks up the diagonal “grid of coordinates” that was once outlined in the southwest of Moscow by the architects of the 1970’s and 1980’s.
Clouds over the Railroad
In the stead of former warehouses near “Lyubertsy-1” station, a new housing complex has been built, which peacefully coexists with the railroad, with the flyover bridge, and with the diverse surrounding scenery, not only dominating over the latter, but improving it.
​Towers in a Forest
The authors of the housing complex “In the Heart of Pushkino” were faced with a difficult task: to preserve the already existing urban forest, at the same time building on it a compound of rather high density. This is how three towers at the edge of the forest appeared with highly developed public spaces in their podiums and graceful “tucks” in the crowning part of the 18-story volumes.
​The Towers of “Sputnik”
Six towers, which make up a large housing complex standing on the bank of the Moskva River at the very start of the Novorizhskoe Highway, provide the answers to a whole number of marketing requirements and meets a whole number of restrictions, offering a simple rhythm and a laconic formula for the houses that the developer preferred to see as “flashy”.
​The Starting Point
In this article, we are reviewing two retro projects: one is 20 years old, the other is 25. One of them is Saint Petersburg’s first-ever townhouse complex; the other became the first example of a high-end residential complex on Krestovsky Island. Both were designed and built by Evgeny Gerasimov and Partners.
The Path to New Ornamentation
The high-end residential complex “Aristocrat” situated next to a pine park at the start of the Rublev Highway presents a new stage of development of Moscow’s decorative historicist architecture: expensively decorated, yet largely based on light-colored tones, and masterfully using the romantic veneer of majolica inserts.
​Renovation: the Far East Style
The competition project of renovating two central city blocks of Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, developed by UNK project, won the nomination “Architectural and planning solutions of city construction”.
​The Contact
The Istituto Centrale per la Grafica in Rome presents Sergei Tchoban’s exhibition “Imprint of the future. Destiny of Piranesi’s City”. The exhibition includes four etchings, based on Roman architectural views of the XVIII century complemented by futuristic insertions, as well as a lot of drawings that investigate the same topic, at times quite expressively. The exhibition poses questions, but does not seem to give any answers. Since going to Rome is pretty problematic now, let’s at least examine the pictures.
​In Search of Visual Clarity
In this article, we are reviewing a discussion devoted to the question of designing city space elements, which is quite complicated for the Russian expanses of land. The discussion was organized by the Genplan Institute of Moscow at the ArchMoscow convention in Gostiny Dvor.
​The City of the Sun
Jointly designed by Sergey Tchoban and Vladimir Plotkin, the VTB Arena Park complex can arguably be considered the perfect experiment on solving the centuries-old controversy between traditional architecture and modernism. The framework of the design code, combined with the creative character of the plastique-based dialogue between the buildings, formed an all-but-perfect fragment of the city fabric.
​...The Other Was Just Railroad Gin*
In their project of the third stage of “Ligovsky City” housing complex, located in the industrial “gray” belt of Saint Petersburg, the KCAP & Orange Architects & A-Len consortium set before themselves a task of keeping up the genius loci by preserving the contours of the railroad and likening the volumes of residential buildings to railroad containers, stacked up at the goods unloading station.
​Lions on Glass
While reconstructing the facades of Building 4 of Moscow Hospital #23, SPEECH architects applied a technique, already known from Saint Petersburg projects by Sergey Tchoban – cassettes with elements of classical architecture printed on glass. The project was developed gratis, as a help to the hospital.
Park of Sentiments
The project of “Romantic Park Tuchkov Buyan”, which was developed by the consortium of Studio 44 and WEST 8, and has won an international competition, combines sculptural landscape design and wooden structures, variety of spatial features and an eventful agenda, designed for diverse audience, with a beautiful and complex passeist idea of a palace park, meant to evoke thoughts and feelings.
​Architecture as an Educational Tool
The concept of a charity school “Tochka Budushchego” (“Point of the Future”) in Irkutsk is based on cutting-edge educational programs, and is designed, among other things, for adapting orphaned children for independent life. An important role is played by the architecture of the building: its structure and different types of interconnected spaces.
​The Gallery Approach
In this article, we are covering the concept of a Central District Clinic for 240 patients, designed by Ginzburg Architects, which won at a competition organized by the Architects Union and the Healthcare Ministry.
Health Constructor
In this issue, we are publishing the concept of a standard clinic designed by UNK Project, which took second place in the competition organized by the Union of Architects of Russia in collaboration with the Healthcare Ministry.
From Foundation to Teaspoon
Based on the taste of their friendly clients, the architects Olga Budennaya and Roman Leonidov designed and built a house in the Moscow metropolitan area playing Art Nouveau. At the same time, they enriched the typology of a private house with modern functions of a garage loft and a children’s art studio.
Continuation and Development
The second “office” stage of Comcity, the most popular business park of the “New Moscow” area, continues the underground street of the already existing part of the complex, responding to its architectural identity.
​The Flying One
Expected to become an analogue of Moscow’s Skolkovo, the project of the High Park campus at Saint Petersburg’s ITMO University, designed by Studio 44, mesmerizes us with its sheer scale and the passion that the architects poured into it. Its core – the academic center – is interpreted as an avant-garde composition inspired by Piazza del Campo with a bell tower; the park is reminiscent of the “rays” of the main streets of Saint Petersburg, and, if watched from a birds-eye view, the whole complex looks like a motherboard with at least four processors on it. The design of the academic building even displays a few features of a sports arena. The project has a lot of meanings and allusions about it; all of them are united by plastique energy that the hadron collider itself could be jealous of.
​The Aperture Effect
For a housing complex built in the town of Pushkino in the Moscow metropolitan area, KPLN Architects designed facades that adjust the stream of light by using the wall geometry.
​A Comfortable City in Itself
The project that we are about to cover is seemingly impossible amidst human anthills, chaotically interspersed with old semi-neglected dachas. Meanwhile, the housing complex built on the Comcity business part does offer a comfortable environment of decent city: not excessively high-rise and moderately private as a version of the perfect modern urbanist solution.
Moving on the Edge
The housing complex “Litsa” (“Faces”) on Moscow’s Khodynka Field is one of the new grand-scale buildings that complement the construction around it. This particular building skillfully tackles the scale, subjugating it to the silhouette and the pattern; it also makes the most of the combination of a challenging land site and formidable square footage requirements, packing a whole number of features within one volume, so the house becomes an analogue of a city. And, to cap it all, it looks like a family that securely protects the children playing in the yard from... well, from everything, really.
Visual Stability Agent
A comparatively small house standing on the border of the Bolshevik Factory combines two diametrically opposite features: expensive materials and decorative character of Art Deco, and a wide-spaced, even somewhat brutal, facade grid that highlights a laminated attic.
The Faraday Cage
The project of the boutique apartment complex in the 1st Truzhenikov Lane is the architects’ attempt to squeeze a considerable volume into a tiny spot of land, at the same time making it look graceful and respectable. What came to their rescue was metal, stone, and curvilinear glass.
Color and Line
The new successful techniques developed by A.Len for designing a kindergarten under budget constraints: the mosaic of irregular windows and working with color.
The Union of Art and Technology
His interest for architecture of the 1930’s is pretty much the guiding star for Stepan Liphart. In his project of the “Amo” house on St. Petersburg’s Vasilyevsky Island, the architect based himself on Moscow Art Deco - aesthetically intricate and decorated in scratch-work technique. As a bonus, he developed the city block typology as an organic structure.
The Countdown
The project that Evgeniy Gerasimov and Partners developed for Moscow’s Leningrad Avenue: the tallest building in the company’s portfolio, continuing the tradition of Moscow’s Stalin architecture.
White Town
In the project that they developed for a southern region of Russia, OSA Architects use multilayered facades that create an image of seaside resort architecture, and, in the vein of the latest trends of today, mix up different social groups that the residents belong to.
​Just a Mirror for the Sun
The house that Sergey Skuratov designed in Nikolovorobinsky Alley is thought out down to the last detail. It adapts three historical facades, interprets a feeling of a complex city, is composed of many layers, and catches plenty of sunlight, from sunrises to sunsets. The architect himself believes that the main role of this house is creating a background for another nearby project of his, Art House in the Tessinsky Alley.
​Part of the Whole
On June 5, the winners of Moscow Architectural Award were announced. The winners list includes the project of a school in Troitsk for 2,100 students, with its own astronomy dome, IT testing ground, museum, and a greenhouse on the roof.
Pedagogical Architecture
Yet another project of a private school, in which Archimatika realizes the concept of aesthetic education and introduces a new tradition: combining Scandinavian and Soviet experience, turning to works of art, and implementing sustainable technologies.
​Rational Arrangement
In this article, we are examining a complex of buildings and interiors of the first stage of the project that has recently become extremely popular – the Kommunarka clinic.
​Parallel Universe
In the “Parallel House” residence that he designed in the Moscow metropolitan area, the architect Roman Leonidov created a dramatic sculptural composition from totally basic shapes – parallelepipeds, whose collision turned into an exciting show.
In the Istra district of Moscow metropolitan area, the tandem of 4izmerenie and ARS-ST designed a sports complex – a monovolume that has the shape of a chamfered parallelepiped with a pointed “nose” like a ship’s bow.