Household number 6 on Sovetskaya Armii Street is close to the Ekaterininsky Park, and it was this neighborhood that ultimately determined the function and class of the building under construction. At first, due to urban planning restrictions, the investor (Barkley company) designed an office complex with an area of 60 thousand square meters on the site, but later, due to a decrease in volumes (to 43.5 thousand square meters), with a compromise was reached by the city. The proximity to the center and the presence of a full-fledged park make elite housing more appropriate here than new jobs. The sports complex is a function inherited from the predecessor of the new house. Previously, an athletics school was located on the site, and Moskomsport decided to create in its place the Center for Innovative Sports Technologies - a special research complex where athletes will undergo examinations, sports testing, etc. One of the prerequisites of the technical assignment was the creation of the longest running track as part of the complex. “It is clear that we could not make a path longer than the width of the site, so we placed a sports center along its border along Soviet Army Street, and the residential buildings are thus deployed perpendicular to this volume and face the park,” says architect Vera Butko.
So, in terms of the residential complex it resembles the traditional letter "P", forming a cozy courtyard inside, protected from the road and, as it were, a continuation of the park. But in the volumetric solution of the complex, compositional interpretations unexpected for this layout and residential architecture as a whole were applied: the five-story block of the sports center merges with the northern residential block and forms a single spatial L-shaped, while the southern residential block (lower), on the contrary, is completely separated from the volume of the sports center - it literally hangs over it with a long console. The renowned German bureau Werner Sobek Engineering & Design was involved in solving this complex design problem. The building not only does not touch its uninhabited neighbor, but deliberately moves away from it so that an arch forms between them. This opening plays an important functional role - through it, not only residents, but also additional sunlight can enter the courtyard, and the interaction of architectural volumes becomes more articulated. Despite the large scale of the building, the architects strove to create a light architectural composition, breaking a single volume into several complex geometric shapes with different interpretations and taken off the ground. An additional human dimension is created by stone bay windows and entrances, visors and numerous other accents that are scattered throughout the complex. Some corner windows are interpreted as deep rectangular niches, petnhauses are fully glazed glass parallelepipeds, and the entrance groups are neat stone "cubes" set at an angle to the main volumes.
The buildings are radically different from each other not only in shape, but also in the materials used: the "torn off" one is faced with a light stone, the main one, L-shaped - with brick. However, in both cases it is only a cape, a drapery partially covering the fragile glass volumes. The blanket, casually thrown on satin pillows, gradually slides down: the "crossbeam" of the sports center is made entirely in brick, but residential buildings are "covered" only partially, although in this case it was not done without precisely verified geometry. In a smaller case, only the street facade and the “bottom” of the console are finished with stone, while the brick “skin” is stretched over half of the glass parallelepiped.
“We tried to get away from the traditional breakdown of a multifunctional complex and the identification of independent volumes. On the contrary, here different functions are collected in a single complex form, which, in our opinion, destroys the standard approach to the design of multifunctional units as to the design of different boxes. Two structurally identical residential areas are interpreted by us in completely different ways, - says Anton Nadtochiy. - One of them clearly gravitates towards progressive modernist architecture, panoramic glazing, minimalist planes, while the second is intentionally half-finished in brick - this is such a traditional elite Moscow house in which a classic interior would be appropriate. We wanted to move away from monotony and create a variety of choices to satisfy customers with different tastes.”
At the same time, both buildings are facing the park with completely glass facades - however, here too the architects tried to get away from stereotypes. In the cladding, four types of glass, different in shade and degree of specularity, are used, due to which the surface is not perceived as a single transparent plane. Triangular bay windows, alternating with balconies of the same shape, give it volume. At first glance, they are scattered on the facades in a completely chaotic manner, but this impression is deceiving: the architects calculated each shift in order to avoid the arrangement of balconies one above the other and thereby save future residents from the temptation to glaze them.
The plasticity of these bay windows grows from the road, due to which the glass volumes seem to dissolve towards the park.
The proximity to the natural complex forced the architects and their customers to make the new building as "green" as possible. The roof of the sports complex has been completely landscaped, and in both residential buildings, each elevator hall is designed as a winter garden with an area of 50 square meters. It is planned to make the terraces of the penthouses green, but, most importantly, the complex uses energy-efficient engineering systems, and all this together allows the architects to certify their project according to the LEED standard. So, outwardly corresponding to all ideas about a high-quality Moscow house (natural stone, brick, a lot of glass and several functions under one roof), the new residential complex promises to become one of the few real "green" buildings in the capital so far.