Built by ADM on Moscow’s Sparrow Hills, the new residential complex, although totally up-to-date, shows nobility in its every detail, being a rightful heir to the legacy of this legendary part of Moscow.
Written by: Translated by: Anton Mizonov
19 December 2018
Running between two rivers and two streets – Kosygina Street and Berezhkovskaya Embankment – the Vorobyevskoe Highway continues the tradition of these parts: back in the day, this land hosted manors of the nobility, and still later on, during the soviet period, the houses of academicians and prominent scientists. Today, this place is extremely popular among those who seek a cozy shelter offering a respectable kind of countryside life essentially in the very heart of one of the world’s busiest megalopolises. On the one side, you are surrounded by greenery and water, and, on the other side, you can admire the main “postcard” views of Moscow, which were once admired by Napoleon and Bulgakov’s Voland.
The peculiarity of the land site where the residential complex “Vorobyev Dom” was built, apart from its being situated on the very borderline of the nature reserve and the go-down to the Setun River, is the fact that legally there were two land sites, and uniting them would have hindered the project significantly. To a certain extent, this defined the composition of the complex: the land site of a smaller size of 0.06-hectare got the most compact unit out of three, five stories high, while the 0.8-hectare land site got two more residential buildings, one with flats, the other with apartments, 13 and 16 stories high respectively. Joining these three buildings with a transparent podium gave the contours of the green plateau of the yard and opened it up to the woodland and the river, turning the whole complex to them.
In addition, the idea to cover the human-proportionate level of the complex with the marquee of the podium allowed the architects to make a far more impressive turnaround of the project – taking it from the level of another rank-and-file housing project to the level of a residential complex marked by nobility and aristocratic exquisiteness. The latter are to be seen in the proportions of the structure and in the arrangement of the propylaea; in the wood sheathing on the inner side – where its texture catches the eye and literally wraps one into warmth; in the perfectly circular windows that “cut through” this sheathing and turn out to be sometimes spotlights and sometimes frames for trees; and in the very configuration of the marquee and the design of the driving access to the buildings: the cantilevered structure follows the contours of the roundabout that the hallways of all the three buildings go out to, and together they form a grand entrance, the kind you see in expensive hotels. The driver comes around, the passenger alights, and off the car goes – it drives either totally away or to the two-level underground parking garage. There is an overland parking lot as well but it is a very compact and payable one, devised for a short stay only – like near the mentioned hotels or airport terminals.
Therefore, the yard is designed as being completely vehicle-free – although small in size, it is surprisingly versatile. The architects even deliberately recreated relief drops characteristic for the local terrain and planted trees on the hills, while in the recessions that, when viewed from above, look like giant boulders (the authors jokingly called them “the balls”) and are paved with granite mosaic of painstakingly selected colors (yet another minute detail that, nonetheless, surely indicates class and nobility), they made zones for active and meditative recreation, including circular wooden benches, tubs for the trees and the lawn, and a playground of the same streamlined shape as the other recessions with a practical rubber coverage.
The yard is also the place, to which comes out the platform, raised on a podium, with a balustrade and yet another marquee, which gives four apartments on the ground floor of the 16-story high building a whole new quality: they have patios of their own, upon which they can make dacha-style tea parties. The rest of the premises on the ground floor are non-residential: lobbies, management offices, and a children’s center in one of the buildings. And, if we are to look at the complex from the woodland and the Setun River, we will see an array of stores that look as if they had grown into the hill – and one will hardly guess that the architects designed the façade of the underground parking garage in this way.
Generally speaking, depending on one’s angle of vision, new and new layers come up. Again, if we are to look from up above (which is quite natural, come right down to it, for most of the residents of the complex, isn’t it?) that the roof of the podium – although the architects weren’t ultimately able to make it completely green the way they originally intended – became an organic part of the landscaping solutions and is marked by the characteristic mosaic “belts”.
Now we are making a 90-degree turn and put our gaze on the façades: if the architects took such a great pain selecting the tones of the granite paving we can only imagine how much effort was invested in the façades. The materials, just as they should be, are exclusively noble and, to some extent, of the signature “Moscow” kind: white stone, red brick, wood (rather, thin ceramic panels that imitate it). But then again, the list of painstakingly chosen materials could be fairly augmented by glass. For example, at the corners of the 16-story building, from where the best views open up, the glass parts are curvilinear and moulded, which yields full-fledged panoramic windows. And, again, these are framed at the top and bottom by stone belts: in order to achieve that, the stone was sawn circle-wise. In combination with the cornice that crowns the residential floors, the image of this house gets something about it that makes it imperceptibly related to the monumental architecture of the buildings standing along the Kosygina Street.
In the building of a smaller height, where the stone is liberally diluted with brick, the corner glass is also of a sophisticated kind - not bent, but without any lintels, so that nothing would stop the view.
The most interesting thing, however, is how these elements made of different materials combine with one another. It would not be an overstatement to call ADM geniuses of façade design: somehow they always manage to make the façade surface just as interesting and diverse as, seemingly, only a landscape of some super-up-to-date park can be (although, speaking on that particular subject, we can see that ADM were still able to make a mini model of it within the space of a regular yard). The staggered rhythm of brick and glazed surfaces, surprise inserts of alternative materials, recessions and screens for the air conditioning units, corrugated surface of the stone – all of this sophisticated (yet still looking quite natural) multilayered structure again puts you in the mind of, on the other hand, a “nest” made with love and care, and, on the other hand, about something that has been formed for years, imbibing the signs and traits of the previous generations.
So, the advertising slogan of the complex “See the Best” is equally applicable to its architecture. Because this a veritable feast for one’s eyes – quite comparable, in terms of breathtaking views, with the iconic panoramas of Moscow that these windows command.
Vladimir Plotkin: “Our profession is complex, vulnerable, and sometimes defenseless against...
As part of the editorial project devoted to the high-rise and high-density construction that Moscow is seeing in recent years, we spoke to the leading architect of CU Reserve Vladimir Plotkin, the author of many grand-scale – and high-profile – buildings of this city. We spoke about an architect’s role and his tasks in the mega-construction process, about the drive of the megalopolis, about the strong sides of mixed and multifunctional construction, and about the methods of organizing big forms.
Alexander Kolontai: “The competition revealed the potential of Moscow as a global city”
An interview with the deputy director of the Genplan Institute of Moscow about the international competition for the concept of development of the nation’s capital and the territories that it annexed in 2012. The competition took place 10 years ago, and this year we are seeing its anniversary, just as the anniversary of changing the boundaries of the capital city.
Foothills and Peaks
Developed by OSA, the concept of revitalization of the territory of Stankoagregat plant combines two scales: extreme-high towers and relatively “human-friendly” urban villas. In the conditions of ultra-dense construction, this solution makes it possible to vacate territories for public spaces and trees, as well as adapt the project for the conditions of the changing market.
City in the Stream
The books by Genplan Institute of Moscow, published for the Institute’s 70th anniversary and for the coinciding exhibition, are the most amazing three-volume edition that I ever saw: the books are totally different, yet packed in one box. This, on the other hand, is justified by the specifics of each of the volumes, the diversity of approaches to processing information used in them, and the complexity of the material as such: town planning is a multifaceted science, bordering on art.
Stop the [special operetion]!
The collective letter Russian architects was published here the 26.02.2022. Now, 04.03.2022, it's text is edited according the new law of the Russian Federation. All the signatures, more than 6800, are deleted, as well as weblinks. But we coserved the edited text for the history.
Shape of the Winery
In this article, we are telling you more about the development of the shape and the implementation of the “Skalisty Bereg” (“Rocky Shore”) winery, designed by Alexander Balabin and his company “Severin-Project” in the Krasnodar Territory, and one of the finalists of WAF 2021.
An Architectural Reality Show
Roman Leonidov, the well-known architect of luxury countryside residences, about which Archi.ru repeatedly wrote, launched a new online project called “Build YOUR House” on his YouTube channel.
Buyan and the Court Quarter
The news about cancellation of the Tuchkov Buyan park has been stirring the minds of people of St. Petersburg for a week already. In the absence of any verified specific information, we discussed the situation with the architects of the park and the Court Quarter: Nikita Yavein and Evgeny Gerasimov.
The Possibility of Flight
The project of the airport, which ASADOV Architects developed for the city of Tobolsk, and which won in the architectural competition, was not implemented. However, it is interesting as an example of designing an airport building of a very small scale, where the main challenge is the optimal organization of space and infrastructure without compromising the imagery component.
Built in the town of Pushkino in the Moscow area, the “Turgeneva 13” housing complex, while fitting in with the surrounding context, differs from it with the rhythmic austerity of its dual composition, a slight wave of the façade, and the color design, in which one can see two images, winter and summer, both “growing” from the specifics of the place.
A Shell by the Sea
Designing the Sports Palace that will determine the development of the entire northern part of Derbent, ASADOV Architects turned to the architectural legacy of Dagestan, local lore, and ancient layers of history.
Karen Saprichyan is wishing everyone a merry Christmas, presenting a series of letter-shaped skyscrapers. The architect has long since been working on this theme, and has calendars of various years in stock. His latest development is a group of towers designed for the city of NEOM, which will be built in Saudi Arabia.
The three brick blocks of the “River Park” housing complex gaze at the water with their terraces. Each block forms a backdrop and two wings, while the residents-only yards turn into “stages” perceived from the river. The landscaped embankment, accessible to all the city people, complements the hierarchy of private, semi-private and public city life that is formed here.
Pompidou Inside Out
Renzo Piano and his GES-2 have already been compared to Ridolfo Aristotele Fioravanti and his Cathedral of the Assumption. And for a good reason: GES-2 also stuns you with its grace and loftiness, but ultimately turns out to be the richest collection of recognizable motifs from an early masterpiece by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers, the George Pompidou Center in Paris. These motifs are fused into the grid of Shukhov-esque structures, painted white, and they create a dialogue between 1910, 1971, and 2021, built on references (not devoid of a poster-like quality) to the main masterpiece. The basilica-shaped space of the former power station is taken apart virtually just like the museum, in accordance with the concept by Teresa Mavica.
Next to Lidval and Nobel
The housing complex designed by Anatoly Stolyarchuk in Neishlotsky Alley: tactful change of scale, tribute to the memory of the place, Finnish additions to the functional typology – specifically, saunas in the apartments – and plans for receiving a BREEAM certificate.
And stabbed it with a knife
The leader of Coop Himmelb(l)au, Wolf D. Prix, presented three projects that he is currently doing in Russia: a complex in Sevastopol, Crimea, which, as it turned out, a western architect could build bypassing the sanctions, because this is a cultural project; a museum and theater center in Kemerovo, and the “SKA Arena”, which is built in the stead of the destroyed Sports and Concert Complex in St. Petersburg – during the presentation the latter was symbolized by a round cake that the architect eventually cut.
The Thin Matter
The house named “Medny 3.14” (“Copper 3.14”) is composed of two textures, each of which resembles in its own way some kind of precious fabric, and of three units, each of which is oriented towards one cardinal point. The architecture of the house absorbs the nuances of the context, summing them up and turning them into a single rhythmic structure. In this article, we are examining the new, just-completed, house designed by Sergey Skuratov in Donskaya Street.
The new business center built in Moscow’s district of Presnya in the 1st Zemelny Lane is all about technology and sustainability. Its streamlined shapes and white facade grid are combined with a new version of vertical greenery: the green of wild grapes, placed at a distance from the facade, instead of arguing with the “pergola” grid, sets it off by contrast.
Lightness of Being
Blooming Sakura, a campfire party, kids splashing in a swimming pool – no, these are not pictures from a vacation, but everyday life going on in the yards of Kiev’s housing complex “Fayna Town”. In this issue, we are examining how the utopia designed by the architects is wired, and what they did to make it a reality.
A Triangular Folded Structure
The project of the new terminal of the Muraviev-Amursky airport in Blagoveshchensk offers architecture based on a modular form – endowed with a special imagery, it becomes the basis both for the carrying structures of the building and the plastique of the facade, at the same time reverberating in the interior design.
The Breath of the East
Designing a residential complex for Tashkent, GENPRO is turning to traditional architecture and modern trends, aiming at emotionality and efficiency: the panjar window lattices and mishrabias are neighboring on vertical greenery and parametric ornaments, while the theme buildings do on a cotton alley and an oriental bazaar.
The Openwork XX-Construction Set
The yard of the Architecture Museum on Moscow’s Vozdvizhenka hosts an installation by DNK ag. It is timed to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the company, and was originally presented at Arch Moscow. The art object is expected to stay in the yard of the museum for one year and set a new tradition – a regularly renewed exhibition project called “Modern Architecture in the yard of MUAR”.
The Spinning Vibe
The pavilion designed by Sergey Tchoban for the World EXPO 2020 in Dubai is a bright and integral architectural statement, whose imagery can be traced back to avant-garde graphic experiments by Jacob Chernikhov, but allows for multiple interpretations. The pavilion looks both like a dome temple, a spinning “Planet Russia”, and the head of a matryoshka doll. Still more interestingly, the core of the exposition is a “brain”. In this article, we take a closer look at the interpretations and the subtleties of the implementation.
Tolerant Aesthetics of Terraforming
The World Expo is a gigantic event; it is difficult to give it one definition or cover it at a glance. All the more so – such an ambitious and record-breaking fair as the one that is now open in Dubai despite all the pandemic restrictions. By no means claiming to present an all-rounded review, we are making an attempt to examine Expo 2020, where signs of aesthetic tolerance of a developer project begin to loom behind the imposing-looking “wings” of “star” architects and delights from space exploration.
The Town in the Snuff-box
The new academic building of Cooperation School in Moscow’s Taganka, designed and built by ASADOV Architects, is a compact volume, at the same time filled with functions and impressions. It easily combines classrooms, a theater, a cafeteria, a gym, and a double-height atrium with an open library and an exit to the terrace – virtually everything that you expect to see in a modern school.
The Northern Versailles
On the bank of the magnificent Vychegda River, in a picturesque location six kilometers away from Syktyvkar, the capital of the Komi republic, the renowned neoclassical architect Mikhail Filippov has designed the town of Yugyd-Choi in the traditional aesthetics inspired by the center of St. Petersburg. The customer Elena Soboleva, the head of the Syktyvkar Housing Construction Fund, sees her mission in making Yugyd-Choi the hallmark of the republic.