The settled stylistic and compositional techniques of modern Orthodox church architecture in Russia, no matter how strange and surprising it may sound for some, did not come from church canons, but rather present a habit of refering to certain architectural styles. Living in the 21st century, architects turn either to the Byzantine traditions that are rich in every sense, or to the more modest Novgorod-Pskov motifs. Perhaps the rethinking of the stylistic elements of Art Nouveau architecture can be considered the ultimate innovation. So when designing sacred architecture, they look back at 1500 or at least 100 years ago. We believe that such a traditionalist approach and turning to the past slows down the process, this is why architects at APEX Design Bureau were especially interested in developing a different kind of concept of the church in Vykhino at the intersection of Ferghana Street and Samarkand Boulevard.
Church of the Protection of the Holy Virgin on Samarkandskiy Boulevard
1 290 m2
The site is located at a point that back in the 60s of the last century was envisioned as the public center of the district. Five hundred meters from the Yugo-Vostochnaya metro station, a public garden, a boulevard, a square and the intersection of pedestrian paths of residential quarters make the spot ideal conceptually - all roads lead to the temple. It's no secret that a lot of contemporary temples fail to match the architectural style of the area. They exist as if they were outside any social and temporal context, fenced and resembling a medieval citadel or a monument “cut off” from the city fabric.
A complex task was to include the projected temple into the existing fabric of the area and, most importantly, the development of social functions: open public landscaped spots around, commercial and educational components. This scenario carries a positive start for all citizens and takes into account the interests of both the church and the city.
The space planning solution envisions a dual volume: a temple for 500 parishioners and an attached two-story administrative and public block, separated from the main space. The layout of the temple is made according to the canon and consists of three main parts. The administrative block is deliberately made attached in order to minimize the number of auxiliary detached buildings on the territory, as they are compositionally and aesthetically difficult to integrate into a single ensemble. Only the chapel at the western facade is free-standing.
The bell tower is located over the vestibule. The entrance to the temple is preceded by a porch, raised by three steps above the ground level for the convenience of people with limited mobility. The dining room has the only access to the administrative and auxiliary block. There on the ground floor is a church kiosk, a buffet with a kitchen, bathrooms, as well as office premises for the treasurer and the rest of the clergy. Two staircases located at the opposite corners lead to the second floor, where one can find a transformable hall (suitable for a Sunday School) and various sections, the offices of the senior staff.
The facade of the building also has a clear dual volume. The lower part is made of concrete panels with the texture of Reckli matrices, their rough surface embodies the earthly, and the upper part of the facade, veneered with metal panels made of titanium carbonitride, reminds us of the heavenly.