The concept of a shopping mall under a cartoonish name “Burunduki” (rus. Chipmunks) proposed to place a large sales floor area (around 130,000 m2) on a completely empty territory at the exit of Novosibirsk. The area is secluded and empty, non-limiting to the architects, but is located on the highway connecting Novosibirsk itself with Akademgorodok and Berdskoe included in the agglomeration. The traffic on the highway is rather heavy so there will be no shortage of visitors.
The customer liked the complex and creative approach used by Alexander Popov and Dmitry Vasilyev in the project of a shopping mall “Respublika” in Kiev (which is not yet finished due to financial shortage), so he asked the architects to make a project, which would answer the functional program of the complex. This program has been developed by the specialists of UTG Company and is quite a standard one: a four-level space with a parking lot, shopping arcades, food-courts and entertainment facilities united around the central atrium. Nevertheless, the architects found a way to make their project stand out from a large number of already existing shopping malls and those under construction in Novosibirsk, both in function and quality. “All our solutions must be interesting and attractive not only from one point of view, but from several points simultaneously,” reveals Alexander Popov, the co-founder and director of “ARCHIMATIKA”, the secret of their success. “If you only take one factor into account, it will either turn out too expensive, which is absolutely impermissible today; or will not be most effective from the functional point of view, which will not add any competitive advantage either”.
One of such solutions was to give up on the usual underground parking lot: unexpectedly, the whole ground floor has been allocated for the parking. First of all, this allowed to reduce the price of construction in the conditions of severe climate. Secondly, the site is located on lowland and the owners would have to constantly face problems with subterranean water. Third, the highway lies two-three meters higher than the site, and the artificially lifted main volume of the complex can be “read” much more easily from a window of a passing car. Finally, the architects considered that it would be easier for the visitors to find their way around and park right under the needed shop, quickly go up and not have to push the heavy cart all around the parking lot. The problem of goods delivery and unloading that occurred due to such layout, is solved with help of a special ramp at the back of the building. The space under it will not be wasted either – it will serve for more parking places.
Another significant aspect is great attention to the public function. Whether we want it or not, shopping centers increasingly become the place for long family pastimes, and the question of quality of the environment and the level of entertainment in this case is important for the project success. “Of course, one must not forget that this is a certain compromise, a closed space with controlled microclimate will always be inferior to an open public city space. But there are so few of such places for leisure and entertainment in our cities, and the weather is so unpredictable that creation of roofed atrium public spaces remains necessary,” says Alexander Popov, “only if due attention is paid to the quality of the created area; both in the functional, as well as architectural and design aspects.” Indeed, besides the standard set of cafes, restaurants, amusement facilities and a movie, the shopping mall offers a concert hall, an oceanarium, exhibition areas, an interactive scientific museum and a topic-based park for children “Minopolis”. More than that, two helicopter landing sites are scheduled on the roof, one of which will actually provide additional transportation opportunities for long-distance haulage, and the second one will serve as another amusement for the visitors. And, all of this is not thought of as another eye-catching, but actually useless “toy”. The architects are ready to give up on the idea completely if it does not turn to by fully functional.
Surely, the solutions for the exterior have to actively demonstrate modern, technologically and aesthetically sophisticated contents of the complex. On the other hand, the façade has to represent the brand of the shopping mall stated in the name “BURUNDUKI” (Chipmunks). But, what’s to be done if, as evolution has willed, chipmunks have not shown themselves either in technical, or aesthetical progress (for now)? On the other hand, these thrifty little animals who collect only the best nuts – how in sync with the concept of a mall! – live in local forests and love cedar cones. So, the architects shifted the accent and drew the spectators’ attention to this specific familiar product of Siberia. The complex constructions are to be made of reinforced concrete with use of metal structures for bridging of large spans. All this will be covered with practical sandwich-panels ensuring the necessary functional performance. And only then comes the shell over the rather simple and inexpensive “box”. Its structure reminds the scale of a cone. On the façade, it will be made of aluminum and on the roof over the atrium – from glass. “Of course, nobody wanted to create some comic, folklore image and build an actual giant cone. It is rather a “cosmic dream of a chipmunk,” smiles Alexander Popov. “I hope everything will work out and the futuristic carcase will have something “delicious” inside to offer”.
The Energy Family
The housing complex Symphony 34 will be built in Moscow’s Savelovsky district; it will consist of four towers from 36 to 54 stories high. Each of the towers has an image of its own, but they all are gathered into a single architectural ensemble – a fragment of a new high-rise urban space lying outside the Third Transport Ring.
The Fifth Element
The high-end residential development in the Vsevolozhsky Lane features a combination of expensive stone and metal textures, immersing them into a feast of ornaments. The house looks like a fantasy inspired by the theater of the Art Nouveau and Symbolism era; a kind of oriental fairy tale, which paradoxically allows it to avoid direct stylization and become a reflection of one of the aspects of modern Moscow life.
Springboards and Patios
The central element of the manor house in the village of Antonovka, designed by Roman Leonidov, is the inner yard with pergolas, meant to remind its owner about his vacations in exotic countries. The exposed wooden structures emphasize the soaring diagonals of single-pitched roofs.
Adding Up a Growing City
The housing quarter “1147” is located at the border between the old “Stalin” district in the north and the actively developing territories in the south. Its image responds to a difficult task: the compound brick facades of the neighboring sections are different, their height varying from 9 to 22 floors, and, if we are look from the street, it seems as though the front of the city development, consisting from long narrow elements, is forming some sophisticated array at this very moment in front of our eyes.
Agility of the Modular
In the Discovery housing complex that they designed, ADM architects proposed a modern version of structuralism: the form is based on modular cells, which, smoothly protruding and deepening, make the volumes display a kind of restrained flexibility, differentiated element by element. The lamellar and ledged facades are “stitched” with golden threads – they unite the volumes, emphasizing the textured character of the architectural solution.
Polyphony of a Chaste Style
The “ID Moskovskiy” housing project on St. Petersburg’s Moscow Avenue was designed by the team of Stepan Liphart in the past 2020. The ensemble of two buildings, joined by a colonnade, is executed in a generalized neoclassical style with elements of Art Deco.
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.
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.
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 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.