We were asked to re-design the former Olympic Site in Moscow, Russia, into a retail led mixed-use scheme. And completely regenerate the surrounding neighbourhood into a vibrant lively environment.
The existing structure and façade of the main arena building needed to be retained.
The Client wanted to incorporate the retail, sports, exhibition, offices, entertainment, planetarium and food and beverage uses within the scheme.
Currently the Olympic Site has two separate former stadium buildings, nesting on a podium. The former water sports building is still actively used for training athletes and water sports events. The former Olympic stadium is mainly used for events, with two stages where performances can happen simultaneously. The areas under the podium are used for car showrooms and retail uses. Architecturally, the buildings do not form a coherent united scheme – the buildings read as separate disjointed elements, and the environment is uninviting. The main Olympic building has a listed façade that is monumental and has predominantly a vertical emphasis.
In response to the brief, we set five main values for the project that guided its development throughout the design process.
Respecting the heritage and taping into nostalgic values, whilst deconstructing the formality of the scheme.
Creating connections to the city.
Creating a destination, a vision and architectural language that draws people in and through the scheme.
Working on the unity of the proposal, creating a cohesive whole.
Putting the user experience at the centre of proposals.
The resulting scheme is an engaging, beautiful environment that draws people in.
Architecturally the buildings are connected with a uniting softer language of the façades. The softer, sustainable wrapped façade made of wooden elements deconstructs the verticality of the existing scheme to a human scale. The old structure of the Arena building acts as a cage to the “jewel in the box”, ephemeral lightweight proposal placed inside the existing envelope.
The uses are organised vertically within the building, with retail use at the lowest floors, bringing value to the client and creating engaging active frontage. Entertainment uses with the associated food and beverage services are located across levels 5-8 and have a separate entrances. 360 degree revolving panoramic restaurants are nestled at roof level, offering views across Moscow, together with a secluded, secret roof garden, with planetarium and exhibition spaces.