Hydrological Cluster


The «Hydrological cluster» is the new typology of educational-scientific complexes dedicated to one of the global problem – water sources depletion and world ocean water level changing. The project goal – to remind to society about important role of water sources for environment and sustainability in New Age. Kazan Volga river port site was selected for the hydrological cluster location. The hybrid cluster, which includes both specialized new formats and universal spaces for rest and work outside the overcrowded city center, is proposed to use the unused potential of the empty coastal area. Long ago the site context was different by natural systems diversity – there are fields, meadows, swamps, geological elements. During last years climatic disasters, anthropogenic impact, urbanization, new construction have been causing problems in all society life’s fields. The project offers a decision of water management and smart use by architecture and new technologies.

Biomimicry is one of the modern ways of response to global environmental problems. The card of innovative biomimetic elements, which mimic hydrological and geological objects in forms, ability of natural resources rational use and adapt to constantly changing environment, was created. There are landscape elements, construction elements of interior and facade elements. It is universal constructor, which can be used in other environmental and innovation projects. Landscape elements mimic to natural systems and allow regulating water level in drought and floods conditions. Smart facade panels and interior elements and structures, which are for efficient use of water and moisture, absorb an excess moisture from the air, process it into energy, purify and store it, as well as normalize air humidity, provide natural ventilation, control light amount, change reverberation time, etc.

All specifics of cluster program and functioning of facade and design elements have been shown on the Volga Hydrology Centre example. The picture illustrates the solution of environmental problems symbolically – allegories of natural forms overwhelmed the Hydrology centre interior. Like alchemists, sponges, jellyfish, canyons and tubes extract moisture from air, purify, store and discharge it, process it to energy. However, the fairytale is real – all solutions and elements are proved constructively – the centre has the flexible frame system with ‘living’ double-hinged facade met energy efficiency requirements. There were used active and passive energy-efficient devices. The project demonstrates a possibility of the same complex existence in two dimensions – today and in the distant future. On the one hand, the new typology of urban modules solves the ecological and social problems of modern cities. On the other hand, it is the utopian idea of the city and the biosphere co-evolution.

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