Sergey Romanov and the present architecture in Russia
|Professor at the Moscow Architectural Institute, laureate of international competitions, master of architecture, member of the union of architects, and Honorable architect of Russia, Sergey Romanov is one of the most important architects in Moscow. He is the leader of the studio ¹1 GUP MNIIP “Mosprojekt -4”, specialized in multi-story dwelling and public buildings. It is a global project studio with the function of developing design documentation at all blueprint stages. It also works as an architectural supervision for building complexes.
The studio is also involved in designing commercial and entertainment projects, administrative, office buildings, sport and cultural centers, e.g. the Multifunctional Office and Trade Centre, the Moscow K.S.Stanislavsky and V.I.Nemirovich-Danchenko Academic Musical Theatre, with Architects A.V.Bokov, the Children Arts Center, The “Trianon” Housing Complex. The projects' degree of the complexity is unconfined, but, as a rule, the studio usually finds solutions to questions and problems, connected with design of nonstandard buildings.
The Anfiteatro High Rise Block has just won an award in the International Property Award Competition. Located in the south-western administrative district of Moscow, the site of 3.05 hectares provides a high-rise apartment block in shape of an ellipse, open-looped to the south. In the center of the ellipse a court (sports hall and recreation areas) covers a large parking. It is isolated from the environment, fenced and monitored by security guards and video surveillance. The residential complex completed by a commercial aera is built with a maximum height of 103 meters, which is well adapted to the landscape and the insulation and natural lighting asper visual analysis and calculations. Each functional area is separated from each other by technical floors.
Engineering supplement is provided by separate and individual sources of energy. Architecture and planning provide a three-dimensional structure of a classical amphitheatre of the 12 sections of different height from 6 to 30 floors. The main architectural features of the buildings that form the aesthetic view are an active elliptic silhouette.There is a contrast between the external and internal facades. The first one is a "stone" wall system coated with pink and grey ceramic tiles. The inner facade is a "glass" wall of a stained glass aluminum systems. All windows are made of a system with aluminum and energy-efficient glass (low emission glass).
- You mainly design multi-storey buildings in Moscow. What is your philosophy behind those projects? Are there any specificities in building policies in Moscow as well as urbanistic regulations?
We can see two trends. The 1st is common with the period of 1990-2010. This is the period of domination in building of multi-storeyed (up to 25 stories) and high-rise (over 25 stories) buildings and housing estates. This is the period of high densities for housing - 25000 m2/ha and higher. The altitude capacity and density guaranteed the achievement of high economic and representative priorities complied with the metropolis scales. The 2nd is common with the current period, the period of reappraising of values. The requirements of sharp decrease in number of floors and density (up to 18000-22000 m2/ha) for the periphery, and almost absolute prohibition for the new construction in the centre are specified in the reading, declared by the new Moscow administration. It may be said that we see all the characteristic features of the transition period in Moscow town planning. The course of the situation development remains to be seen.
All high-rise projects of my bureau are referred to the period of super densities, and we followed the next principles elaborating them. You can call it a philosophy. This is a creation of a comfortable and high-quality (it may be said sustainable) living environment, when a habitant does not feel density and overcrowding due to organization of a comfortable dwelling unit with the best scenes from windows and large glazed summer spaces - verandas and loggias. Units, furnished with the modern communications, equipped with parking places and common services. Besides, all our buildings were projected in Moscow regions of the wide-scale 5-12-floor standard buildings as composition centres, introducing the new town-planning scale, silhouette, the atmosphere of optimism and belief in future, i.e. as giving birth to the new life style. The special characteristic feature of these buildings is the provision of shelteredness and safety according to the “my house is my castle” principle.
- Are the architects nowadays taking more account of sustainability than before in Russia? What is your special comment on this matter?
Creation of a “sustainable” architecture is an actual theme in Russia, but we are just at the beginning of the way. Positive trend is the activity in discussing this subject and promotion of “sustainable” ideas towards the real architecture. The priorities here are as follows: openness towards nature, usage of the local environmentally friendly materials, introduction of “green” standards, provision of impeccable sanitary properties, reduction in exploitation of power resources, control for emissions and waste, utilization of recoverable resources, guaranteeing psychological comfort and safety in the urban environment. Many of these parameters are already under control of normative standards in Russia.
- What is your opinion on the trend of the present worldwide architecture?
In my opinion, the modern trends in the world architecture is the continuation of triumph of high technologies in design and building, and search for the new forms in constructions and architecture. With the placing of the “unusual” concept of a building form and façade finish and technology to the top position. We can see at least two opposite trends in the “high” architecture, illustrating the foregoing. The 1st trend: as continuation of the line of the static minimalist architecture of the sterile ascetic, geometrically irreprehensible volumes moulded of glass, metal, nets or ceramics without details and scale, i.e. architecture without excessive emotions or architecture with emotions hidden inside themselves. The 2nd trend: as continuation of the line of the dynamic compositional architecture as the architecture of complex and super complex compositions and spaces.
The bionic architecture seems to accompany this trend. Of course, this is the most emotional trend, requiring special qualities and knowledge of the particular project technologies on the part of the creators. For sure, this is a great generalization, and the world of architecture is far more diversified, but these trends are the most pictorial. They will dominate in future alternating with each other at the architectural Olympus, not suppressing but helping and supplementing each other, as separately they will feel lonely. The modern metropolis needs them both. The second trend is much more closer to me in emotions and colours and looks as a Renaissance in a years of tough and exact everyday’s architectural being.