Renovation at the crossroads: either to break, or to upgrade
28 June , 23:42
Last week the Moscow renovation received a review from where it was not expected. Sberbank published its own study of consumer preferences of residents in large cities of Russia, and it showed killer results for high-rise building apologists: people in large cities of Russia do not want to live above 10 floors.

Lyudmila Butuzova

This was announced at an online conference by the senior vice president of Sberbank Vladimir Sitnov. The data of the analytical hub indicate that 40.3% of people in Moscow want to live no higher than the 5th floor, in St. Petersburg - 43.2%, in cities with population over one million people - 52.3%. At the same time, in the capital, those who are interested in living in an apartment no higher than the 10th floor account for another 30%, in St. Petersburg - 29%, in other large cities - 22%.

On the contrary, only 3.89% of Muscovites, 0.65% of Petersburgers and 0.85% of residents of other Russian cities are ready to consider apartments in high-rise complexes from 21 to 40 floors. 1.94% of people in the capital, 4.52% in St. Petersburg and 2.29% in large regional cities would like to live in skyscrapers above 40 floors. According to Sitnov, this points to "an obvious contradiction between consumer preferences and the prevailing point-building format in Russia".

“The talking heads of renovation - the chief architect of Moscow Sergey Kuznetsov and the head of the Moscow Architecture Committee Yuliana Knyazhevskaya - have been convincing the townspeople for three years at all sites of the torn capital that they misunderstand something about density and altitude,” recalls town protector Maxim Kozlovsky. “Let's see how Juliana can withstand this blow from... Sberbank”.

It could be assumed that Sberbank’s hitting for renovation was just an injection by the umbrella in the ongoing debate about the scandalous program. But when VEB also creeps up to the holy of holies of the capital's city hall, through its Strelka design bureau, putting forward the reconstruction of five-story buildings as an alternative to total demolition, hopes creep in that the renovation program, if not disavowed, at least will not be so cannibalistic.

However, we will not deceive ourselves ahead of time. It is likely that both Sberbank and VEB simply sang a duet to fuel the diminishing interest of the regions in the "great relocation." Just the day before, Speaker of the Federation Council Valentina Matvienko suggested distributing the housing renovation program implemented in Moscow throughout the country. The rationale is this: almost half of the housing stock in Russia is formed by Soviet mass development. Five-story buildings make up 27% of all residential buildings in the country, and 9-16-storey residential districts built before the end of the 1980s make up another 22%. More than 70 million Russians live in such houses, and not all of them will agree to demolition.

And here, on the same site of Kommersant, where Sberbank published its sensational research on the unwillingness of Russians to move to high-rises, the article “Moving without demolition. How to fall in love with renovation and stay in Khrushchev”, where Ekaterina Maleyeva, Project Director of Strelka Design Bureau, says that demolition of old houses is just one of the renovation options. But there are other ways to solve the problems of an aging housing stock.

Oh how!!! What Novye Izvestia wrote about at least the last three years, proved through the mouths of famous architects Krotov and Ekhin, it finally came to the famous Strelka!

What are these options?

Yes, of course, the same reconstruction of the strong five-story buildings, ”the author shares the discovery, or not suspecting that the country has had a“ Housing ”program for more than ten years, which enables citizens to organize the modernization of their apartment building. Or deliberately ignoring the fact that in Moscow there is a program document for the comprehensive reconstruction of a five-story housing stock, developed by architects Yuri Ekhin and Alexei Krotov. This work, detailing all the stages of modernization of old housing and bringing it into line with the needs of our time, was awarded the Golden Section Diploma of the Union of Architects of the Russian Federation in 2017. According to this model, several dozen houses were reconstructed in Moscow, including a five-story building on Khimki Boulevard, in which Alexey Krotov lives.

Дом архитектора Алексея Кротова - это бывшая пятиэтажка!

If Ms. Maleyeva is not in the know, it is worth recalling how many copies were broken in 2017 on the eve of renovation for the opportunity not to demolish but to modernize Soviet-built houses, and how many thousands of Muscovites who decided to renovate their homes on their own and at their own expense, suffered due to the fact that the Moscow authorities and their like-minded people from the same Strelka Design Bureau did not want to hear about alternatives to demolition.

Okay, who will remember the old... Ms. Maleyeva for some reason calls the reconstruction “soft renovation”. We will not find fault, we will dwell on the details - what will be our apartments? We quote:

“Everyone knows the shortcomings of standard apartments... An example is a typical two-room apartment in a house of series I 464 with an area of 45.1 square meters. m with a small kitchen and a living room, in which the door arrangement does not allow you to conveniently arrange furniture. During the reconstruction of the house, remaining within the same area, the kitchen can be combined with the living room and turned into a comfortable space for communication. In this case, you can separate the cooking zone with the help of a sliding partition to localize odors from cooking. A built-in wardrobe will appear in the entrance hall, additional storage spaces will occupy the previously unused living room space. Thanks to the arrangement of the second riser, the apartment can accommodate two bathrooms: for guests and cleaning at the entrance and a spacious bathroom with a bedroom. The last improvement will be a large side balcony, where in the summer you can have breakfast and spend time".

Residents of apartments on the most hated first floors are not forgotten. “This housing can be turned into the most comfortable in the house. It is enough to arrange your own front garden at each of them with a separate exit from the apartment. This will protect residents from what is happening in the courtyard and create a rare opportunity for city residents to drink coffee in the morning in their own garden. "

Вот такой может быть хрущевка после реконструкции! Площадь квартир увеличивается на 20-40 кв метров
А это - хрущевка с выходом в собственный садик. Реализовано в Германии

Entrances, “small and dark”, go as a separate chapter: “Their area can be increased by annexing, glazing doors and a facade, creating a through passage to the courtyard ..., expanding the entrance group and making it a room for the concierge, a waiting area for delivery services or guests residents, a bathroom so that mothers with children walking in the yard can not go up to the apartment if necessary. ”

It is no exaggeration to say that the article by Ms. Maleeva fans of the reconstruction read out to the holes.

- Awesome! Two toilets in odnushka and unused space in the living room under the pantry! We are stunned, dear edition! - Residents of the house number 21 on ul. Papernik , who had been seeking reconstruction for five years and were just a step away from it, when the mayor’s office cut their plans in December 2018.

There is something to be upset about. That reconstruction, for which they stood, increased each apartment by 20-40 square meters, completely changed the layout and quality of life. At the same time, residents did not pay a dime and did not sit on the neck of the budget - all expenses were covered by three or four superstructure floors and the sale of new apartments at commercial prices. The current reconstruction, if it is carried out in the variant proposed by Strelka Design Bureau, at best will add another toilet to their cramped conditions, at worst it will turn into cosmetic repairs at the public expense and the prospect of hovering in Khrushchev for the rest of his life.

- We went for reconstruction when there was no rumor about renovation, we just turned out from under the overhaul, finding out that this is a uniform profanity and it will not change anything in our five-story building, the chairman of the housing and communal services “21 Papernika St. 21” Marina told “NI” Sandpiper . - We would have long been rebuilt, we had a wonderful project by architect Alexei Krotov, there were reliable investors and a full package of documents for the reconstruction. The Moscow City Planning Policy Department was dragging on with all its might. In December 2018, the last signature remained ... But instead, our partnership “City reconstruction of five-story buildings” was dispersed, the head and documents of thirty other Moscow houses were arrested . More than a hundred initiative groups were dragged through the courts, who, like us, wanted to independently modernize housing without the participation of the city. That, apparently, was our “fault”, which is on its own. The building complex did not see any benefit from this - you won’t steal from the residents, you won’t draw from the budget. Whether the renovation program is the business - just substitute your pocket ... Now that it turned out that nobody needs renovation skyscrapers, officials and developers are figured out how to get along with the five-story buildings and profit from the budget.

Actually, the article was written for that, you just need to be patient and read to the end. The architect Krotov read it.

“In the article under discussion there are no interests of people living in five-story buildings,” he shared with “NI”. - The article is not about people at all, but about the same commercial interest of business, for which people are just an annoying hindrance. I called the Honorary President of the Union of Architects Andrei Vladimirovich Bokov: the reaction is negative, the article was written by amateurs who have no idea about the essence of the subject of discussion. And what else can you expect? Strelka is a consulting bureau with professionals in the field of architecture and construction. Hence the confusion in the typology of five-story buildings:

- we didn’t build wireframes - they’re going to reconstruct them, you can’t dismantle the bearing panels - the floor slabs will collapse, they haven’t heard about it ... The article focuses not on improving the quality of the existing old housing stock, but on the possibility of increasing square meters in order to make a profit. In the open text they write: in order for developers to become interested in Khrushchev, the building density of the former five-story microdistricts will have to be increased no less than three times - from 8 thousand to 24 thousand square meters. m per 1 ha. So how does this so-called “reconstruction” differ from the current robbery? But it should be noted that the article did not appear by chance. Apparently, the "senior comrades" realized that the renovation in its current form is untenable, it leads to even greater problems, but something needs to be done ... This "something" can be a reconstruction. So it must be led and connected to the budget pipe. Again, in the interests of business, the townspeople, as they themselves noticed, at best will get a second toilet.

Well, in the regions, if “soft renovation” comes from the Strelka consulting bureau, there will be at least rush demand for plumbing ...

But there is good news: while some are fantasizing and courting the budget, others are launching in the regions the process of reconstruction of five-story buildings with the participation of residents. Details in the comment.

Maxim Poleshchuk, professor of MARCHI:

- In recent years, the debate about renovation in Moscow has not stopped, which indicates that the program is not sufficiently substantiated, from a scientific, social, architectural and urban planning point of view. In connection with the transfer of M. Khusnulin to the federal level of government, in the early days the idea was voiced of transferring the experience of renovation to the whole country, however, a few days later this statement was disavowed with the thesis "that everything is more complicated and you need to study the situation."

However, it so happened that, in the framework of the concept of “Institutionalization of Innovative Development in Urban Planning, Architecture and Design,” we at MARCHI since 2016 have been developing an organizational and activity program for the reconstruction of the old foundation, called the “Platform for the reconstruction of the living environment of the late 50s, 60s” years with pilot projects in Kaliningrad, Samara and other cities. In contrast to the statement of the problem in the article, the Platform presents a system for organizing reconstruction activities, with a roadmap, methodology, software, scientific justification, the creation of material interest of residents, etc. In order to promote the Platform, a public organization “Institute of Innovations in Urbanism, Architecture and Design” was created, a training system is being implemented as part of a similar special course, extensive research has been carried out in Kaliningrad and Samara.

However, in recent years there has been a practice of ignoring the country's leading architectural universities in the development of the most important spatial tasks, for some unknown reasons Strelka Institute is trying to monopolize the most important social market. Yes, of course, this is a reflection of the general trends in our specific economy. However, in this situation it turned out that the topic of reconstruction of five-story buildings was more developed by the Moscow Architectural Institute and the Institute of Innovation with the participation of well-known architects who in practice implemented reconstruction projects.

Currently, there are about 500 million m2 of housing in the country , 120-160 million m2 fall on 4- and 5-story buildings of the so-called demolished series, almost half (40-60 million m2 are located in investment-attractive areas in the largest cities of the Russian Federation. During their reconstruction, within the framework of the concept developed at the Moscow Architectural Institute, it is possible to obtain 30-60 million m2 of additional living space based on the principles of a comfortable environment, energy efficiency, sustainable development in the settled areas. What is attractive for residents? Density no more than 15-17 thousand .m2 per ha, storeys of 6-7-9 floors.

The process of reconstruction of low-rise buildings of the 50-60s requires significant research, design and organizational efforts. It is impossible to solve the problem without the creation of special funds, without the support of development institutions, without the creation of specialized construction organizations, without the broad support of the residents themselves, and only with traditional measures known from Moscow renovation. Currently, the concept is being studied at the ASI, the Ministry of Construction of the Russian Federation, and the House. RF, Ministry of Education and Science, Ministry of Digitalization. We look forward to a wide discussion and support at the Urban Forum in Kaliningrad in October this year.

So it’s not just Strelka that the prospects for housing modernization depend.

Эти симпатичные домики - переделанная советская хрущевка в Германии!

On our own we'd like to add: in addition to Russian renovation options, there are also ready-made projects from Germany, the Baltic countries and Finland.