© the Open International Architecture and Urban Planning Competition for the development of a master-plan for the territory adjacent to the Almetyevsk Reservoir on the Stepnoy Zay river in the city of Almetyevsk, Republic of Tatarstan
The qualification round of the Open International Architecture and Urban Planning Competition for the development of a master plan for the territory adjacent to the Almetyevsk reservoir on the StepnoyZay River, Almetyevsk, Republic of Tatarstan, concluded on January 30. The judging panel, chaired by Tatneft CEO Nail Maganov, selected three finalists to work on the design of the StepnoyZay Valley master-plan in Almetyevsk. This honor went to consortia made up of Russian and foreign experts, led by IND Architects LLC, Obermeyer Consult LLC, and IQ Studio LLC respectively.
“We have chosen finalists that are capable of dealing with the complex task set before them. It's going to be really complex, as the finalists will probably find out soon enough. But I believe that we made a worthy choice; all of the finalists are well-known companies with a wealth of experience and have implemented dozens of successful projects around the world.”
(Deputy General Director of PJSC TATNEFT for Capital Construction)
The master plan will help revitalize the territory adjacent to the Almetyevsk reservoir on the StepnoyZay River and transform it into a public space for the local community. Despite the complexity of the task, it piqued the interest of urban planning professionals both in Russia and abroad. The large number of competition submissions is testament to this: there were 44 applicants from 37 cities in 16 different countries. The total number of potential applicants who registered for the competition reached 243, representing 48 countries and 6 continents. The competition’s organizing committee received properly filled-out applications from 115 companies: Nine individual entries and 106 entries that were part of 35 multinational consortia. The competitors represent 37 cities from 16 countries. Seventy-three of the companies are from Russia. Over one third of the competitors who submitted an application were from abroad.
“The StepnoyZay Valley transformation project is vital for the city’s future. It will affect the valley’s greenest area, which lies in direct proximity to the residential districts, and has already been integrated into the urban environment. Because of this, we would like to understand how to develop this territory harmoniously, in order both to preserve its natural identity and make it more accessible to the local community; we wish to make the facilities in the area more user-friendly, ensure that they do not clash with one another, and comply with modern standards.”
(Head of the Almetyevsk region of the Republic of Tatarstan, member of the judging panel)
The judging panel members represented several industries and included government officials from the Republic of Tatarstan and the Almetyevsk municipal district administration, members of the business community, and distinguished experts on the environment, tourism, economics, construction, urban planning, and architecture. Guy Eames, founder of the Green Building Council in Russia (RuGBC), acted as the international competition curator. Thanks to his experience working at major companies in different countries, he will most certainly enhance the judges’ competence with his expertise regarding green construction and public space development.
“While working on projects, it’s very important to pay special attention to environmental safety and sustainable development, as this is the only way you can create a space that people would truly want to live in. It’s high time we focused on green buildings. I am very happy to see that the competition has reached this vital turning point.”
(founder of the Green Building Council in Russia (RuGBC), international competition curator)
During the judging panel meeting, the experts reviewed all the materials submitted by the competitors as part of their proposals: portfolios of relevant projects and essays outlining the key ideas the competitors plan to implement should they be chosen for the Competition final. The Expert Panel was also involved in evaluating submissions. Chaired by Marat Gifranov, head of the Executive Committee of the Almetyevsk Municipal District, Republic of Tatarstan, this Panel had met the day before, on January 29 Highly regarded community members from the Republic of Tatarstan, representing such fields as culture, politics, environmental safety, sport, and religion, had reviewed the 44 proposals submitted for the Competition, discussed them, and gave their recommendations for the short list, which the judges then accounted for when making their choice regarding the finalists.
After the judges’ vote, the finalists were:
A consortium under the leadership of IND Architects LLC (Moscow, Russia).
Bureau B+B (Amsterdam, the Netherlands)
JTP Studios (London, Great Britain)
ARKHDESANT LLC (Kazan, Russia), Knight Frank (Moscow, Russia)
A consortium under the leadership of Obermeyer Consult LLC (Moscow, Russia).
Cushman & Wakefield OOO (Moscow, Russia)
A consortium under the leadership of IQ Studio LLC (Moscow, Russia).
GMA (Birmingham, Great Britain)
ASWStudio (Moscow, Russia)
AECOM (Edinburgh, Great Britain)
Alphabet City (Moscow, Russia)
“Such an ambitious design project for a high-priority urban territory must be part of an international process, which will offer solutions at a whole new level by bringing together professionals with world-class expertise. A synergy of this kind will help achieve more efficient results and reach a thoroughly rationalized solution in line with the current trends in global architecture and urban planning.”
(General Director of the Agency for Strategic Development CENTER. the Head of the Organizing Committee)
The finalists will work on their plans until April 6 In February, as part of an orientation seminar, they will visit Almetyevsk in order to get acquainted with the design territory and meet the members of the Expert panel and the local community, thus getting answers to important questions that will shape the development of their concepts. The final meeting of the judging panel, chaired by Tatneft CEO Nail Maganov and culminating with the announcement of the winner, will take place on April 23.