Location: ZOOM
Status: Concept, research
Year: 2020
Project team:
Practice curators: Anna Rodionova, Anastasia Rychkova
Practice team: Alexandrina Levandovskaya, Anna Khachatryan, Vera Margasova, Victoria Yurzinova, Daria Pilipak, Ekaterina Chinchaladze, Lera Mikhailova, Maria Pogodaeva, Maria Yurchenko.

The project was carried out with the interns as part of the summer practice workshop in 2020.

Workshop "Universum" is an attempt to rethink the "black holes" of the city, its blind zones, and those uncomfortable and unsafe places without free access. To solve these problems, the Druzhba interns proposed to design spaces where neighboring communities would form, residents would communicate, and citizens could get the new experience of interacting with the urbanized environment.

The project's name is "Universum", and it is not accidental. It says that the principles and strategies used to design public spaces are adaptive. They take into account the interests of all users and can be applied to "black holes" of different scales and types. This abstract model, which is not tied to a specific place, helps to look at the city from a different perspective.

Residents of the city "Universum" are generalized into three groups: Activists, Necessaries, and Archivists. They are different in their way of life, but their paths intersect spontaneously in newly formed public spaces. Each group will find what they like. By creating new social ties, new spaces, new experiences, and new communication, the problem of facelessness and alienation of people in the city will be solved.

"The activity of life in the city is a relative concept. It is not the number of people that matters, but the feeling that the place is inhabited and used."

Jan Gale

Ян Гейл
The project aims to include closed perimeters with blank fences and open uncomfortable spaces in people's lives, like green areas inside the city. The main idea of the first project is to create a route in the city, uniting the majority of residents by incorporating new places into their lives.
We solve this problem with the help of step-by-step connections with space, between people, and areas, and as a result, this structure turns into an interactive route.

We worked with residential peripheral areas. The idea of decentralization was basic for our project. We faced the task of filling up the sleeping areas with new functions. So the residents have the opportunity to spend their time comfortably and interestingly in the neighborhood. We solve this problem with the help of a step-by-step introduction of spatial structures displayed in the GIF. Initially, the first floors are involved, then three-dimensional structures appear in the yards. And then this structure spreads outward, into the streets.
The project's focus was disadvantaged and potentially criminogenic areas that distort city routes and "cut" the urban fabric. These spaces border directly on the infrastructure necessary for the city, although not so pleasant for the citizens. We cannot demolish or get rid of such places, so the only option was to "build walls". However, due to their imagery, flexibility, and integration with the natural landscape, walls do not limit, but create a new space, saturating it with functions.