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Regular version of the site

Learning from Shabolovka

As part of Week 4 of the Advanced Urban Design Master’s Programme, the students were asked to analyse Shabolovka Street through mapping its physical and social features. The main goal of the workshop was to explore the influence of HSE University (either positive or negative) on Shabolovka and to analyze its potential role. Divided into 6 research groups, the students were asked to gather and map available information and to come up with an observation or recommendation. Each group was working on one of the three suggested themes: buildings, infrastructure and people.

Tutor: Theo Deutinger
Assistants: Marina Sapunova, Ekaterina Dyba
Invited speakers: Alexei Novikov, Vitaly Stadnikov, Gleb Vitkov, Aleksandra Chechjotkina

Through the rapid expansion of HSE University, it is now taking on the role of a key player in urban space transformation. That makes it crucial to discover in what fields the development of the HSE campus and Moscow’s urban development coincide and, moreover, how a common development strategy for the city and university can be mutually beneficial.

At Shabolovka Street the autonomous university campus is about to become a real urban institution: a motor and a tool for urban development. It considerably affects its surroundings along Shabolovka Street, yet is being also affected by them.

As part of Week 4 of the Advanced Urban Design Master’s Programme, the students were asked to analyse Shabolovka Street through mapping its physical and social features. The main goal of the workshop was to explore the influence of HSE University (either positive or negative) on Shabolovka and to analyze its potential role. Divided into 6 research groups, the students were asked to gather and map available information and to come up with an observation or recommendation. Each group was working on one of the three suggested themes: buildings, infrastructure and people.

Below are the research findings presented by the students at the end of the workshop.

Buildings

Multinarrative Anchors by Marina Salimgareeva & Eric Wicks 
Multi-Narrative Anchors. Shabolovka Strip Evolution
Multi-Narrative Anchors Over Space & Time

Understanding the potential of HSE campus in the area of Shabolovka street would require to consider broader context regarding the two main axes - time and space. Several major periods in the history of Donskoy district can be identified, corresponding to the overall periods in economic development of the country and the city.

The area of Shabolovka has not only been shaped by the historical periods but can also be seen to correlate with the prevalent economic, industrial and ideological paradigms of the time. As the country moved from Tsardom to Empire, followed by Soviet and post-Soviet epochs, the socioeconomic system evolved from agrarian to industrial and post-industrial.

In relation to the context of education, the monastic form of education was replaced by the age of Enlightenment, which in turn was followed by modern institutions relying on mass-media and information as main driving forces. All of these “traditional” educational institutions can be found near Shabolovka.

However, the current societies and economies become increasingly dependent on networks instead of conventional institutions. Moreover, information is no longer enough, and diverse experiences and narratives become more and more valuable. In this context, HSE should identify and target for collaboration places and actors that provide the most diverse collection of narratives and experiences, as well as traditional educational institutions.

Perfect MixShabolovka by Ekaterina Zarudnaya & Ernest Sveisberg

Perfect MixShabolovka. Ensembles: Functional Diagram
Perfect MixShabolovka. Ensembles: Size & Activity Comparison

A whole set of functions for a comfortable urban living can be found along one street. While some functions occupy only one building and area nearby creating a hotspot of the street, others form monofunctional groups or clusters and can even define a whole quarter. The plot area of these functional groups varies from 3 600 m2 to 197 500 m2, among them HSE area is about 18 000 m2. The activity of use has even greater influence on the street. For example, Metro station and square nearby occupy only 3 600 m2, however, it is used by 57 000 people daily (metro passengers), whereas the monastery with 197 500 m2 area is used only by 1 500 people. In comparison, HSE brings 3421 people to the district while occupying 24 500 m2. The daily use of the functional groups along the street create the diverse character of Shabolovka street, which is a unique value of urban life in the district.

Analysing the urban fabric, functional diversity and activity of use along Shabolovka street we have come to two conclusions:

  • Currently HSE is a closed monofunctional institution, and the potential of such a diverse location is not realized neither within HSE territory, nor by HSE in the urban environment
  • The diversity along Shabolovka street is so wide that one could say: All you need is Shabolovka – you can be born, spend a colorful life and rest in peace within the span of the street, however, 2 very necessary functions are not completely provided: sport and leisure

Infrastructure

Revealing Potentials by Daniel Roche & Axel Burvall 

Revealing Potentials
Revealing Potentials. Public Realm Diversity

There is a strong dichotomy between the diverse activities of Shabolovka street and the monotony of its public realm. We used the exercise to reveal potential spaces within the public realm that could be used to resolve this paradox. Shabolovka has a multitude of space that could be used more consciously and efficiently. In total, it has over 17 800 m2 of green area dividing the pedestrian footpaths and the road. This green area does not constitute a coherent space, it is divided into individual plots. These plots are consistent throughout the entire street, regardless of how the character of the street changes. Currently 70% of the plots are fenced, none of them are programmed, and they are not distinguished from each other. We believe that the green plots should not be rendered as homogenous, they should instead reflect the heterogeneous nature of Shabolovka. Therefore, we are interested in developing a framework where the plots assume a central role in promoting the heterogeneity of the area.

Watch the Door by Larisa Koroleva & Innokentiy Volyanskiy 

Watch the Door. Analyzes
Watch the Door. Door Typology
Shabolovka Night Panorama with the HSE on the Dark Side

Doors are the key points through which people have access to inner public and private spaces. Along Shabolovka street 70% doors are public and 30% are private, totaling 115 doors. It became clear that the highest frequency and number of public doors are located near HSE and two metro stations (Oktyabrskaya and Shabolovskaya). So it means that HSE together with business clusters produce commercial activities and value around them. The doors and areas diagrams show different characters of the street: quiet residential, active business-educational and administrative. All these areas have various ratios of glazed and unglazed doors. The HSE and business area mostly have glazed doors (around 70%). However, the main HSE entrance is an exception. It does not clearly show the great significance of the university campus and conceals its presence in the street. We think that the process of opening of the HSE University to the city could start from as small a step as changing its main door.

People

Rhythm of Shabolovka by Dima Panov & Oskar Simann

Rhythm of Shabolovka. Mapping the Opening Hours and Capacity of Shabolovka Street
Rhythm of Shabolovka. Mapping the Opening Hours and Capacity of Shabolovka Street

Looking at the opening hours and capacity of Shabolovka Street one can conclude that it consists of a center and a periphery that have different rhythms of activity. The center is concentrated around the metro, HSE campus and the several business centers that are located on the street. The area has a high density of facilities ranging from restaurants and shops to education, offices and public transport. Most of these facilities are small and have a low capacity. The periphery, on the other hand, consists of fewer facilities but with a larger capacity. In the center, a majority of the facilities has capacity of fewer than 10 persons. In the periphery the cinema alone has a capacity of 851 persons. The small facilities in the center are reinforced by the office space with a capacity of 10888 persons and the HSE campus with a capacity of 1384.

The impact of the HSE campus is unquestionable. Situated in the central part of the street it leaves a huge gap in the otherwise dense and active street fabric. As the campus itself is not public it gives little to the street life and you can see it as a pause in activity. The students on the campus, on the other hand, are still interacting with the other activities on the street. In spatial terms the campus takes from the center but in terms of people it gives.

Coffee Talks by Emily Radosavljevic & Evgeny Yurasov

Coffee-to-Go Price based on Location

Coffee-to-Go Analyzes

From the slow coffee of the past, the culture of to-go coffee has moved at a speeding pace, while the tea culture of Russia is a constant element of daily life, especially in more domestic settings. Examining coffee’s connection to urbanity, a look at Shabolovka Street can provide insights to society, as we examine how its coffee culture operates throughout urban space. Coffee serves critical functions in urban environments and can be read as a social barometer in several ways that provide a glimpse into local culture and wider global tendencies. Coffee is an important constituent within the urban landscape that interlinks people, their work and the spaces they inhabit. This also highlights a spectrum of an emerging type of tired people working in the knowledge-economy, within mostly tea-centered Russia.

Investigating the coffee establishments of Shabolovka Street, the location of an HSE campus, we see that there are 17 coffee establishments that offer coffee to-go. Naturally they spread in clusters along the strip accordingly to 3 functional superstructures. They are concentrated nearby the metro, central business districts and HSE campus, but there is also coffee offered at both ends of the street. They offer coffee at a variation of prices, ranging from 25 rubles to 190 rubles. The average price of coffee in the area is 101 rubles, compared to 170 rubles throughout Moscow, which indicates that this area is oriented towards serving students and daily users (office workers, visa center).

There are only two coffee franchises in the area, and larger global brands such as Starbucks are missing from the neighbourhood, which reflects a more local character in coffee establishments. The cups of coffee also have a more international orientation, with 60% including text in foreign languages. However, HSE is not among them.

Students support neighborhood coffee establishments, and through short interactions, tend to brush shoulders with neighborhood residents. Through our observations of coffee around Shabolovka, we are interested in examining the potential of coffee cups or the cup sleeves as a medium or device for communication, awareness and identity in the neighborhood. They could be used for the dissemination of information about the area, including awareness of interesting facts, events, hidden histories and secret sites or for the sharing of various neighborhood narratives.

Furthermore, in cooperation with HSE’s public program, the intellectual orientation of coffee internationally and the closed space of HSE, we propose HSE open programming in another neighborhood space designated for community function as a type of community, cultural and debate center. We are interested in seeing how the borders of HSE could open up to the general public and involve itself in local social life, initiated by people meeting and exchanging over coffee, such as the Human Libraries project, where HSE’s public program and lecturers are positioned in more high-traffic, sociable spaces in the community.