Central Park in Istra

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Despite its small size, Istra has the potential to develop tourism, residential and transport infrastructure. Its historical and cultural heritage was formed due to the New Jerusalem Monastery. The heart of the complex is the Resurrection Cathedral of the late 17th century.

The Central Park, which was renovated by Basis architectural bureau, has always been a favorite place of leisure for the city residents. Local public has formed a request to preserve the existing park functions, update outdated paving, lighting and playgrounds.

The architects aimed to create a modern eco-park for communication between visitors of different ages. The new pedestrian route lays along the river, connecting the Istra railway station with the New Jerusalem Monastery, passing through the picturesque points of the park. The new path will replace the existing one, moving pedestrian flows to the recreational area.

The park pays attention attention to the ecology of the place and a strict regulations regarding protected natural areas. The natural morphology of the park with pronounced elevation changes, slopes, ravines and plains, is strengthened with the help of viewpoint balconies; floodplain meadow was successfully preserved. The natural reservoir Lake Podkova – the oxbow lake of the Istra River – will be restored in the future.

The focal point of the territory is the ensemble of the New Jerusalem Monastery, located 1.5 kilometers away. A view of the white-stone monastery in the distance opens from the pedestrian bridge floating over the ravine. The selected materials – natural stone, wood – are a semantic reference to the historical ensemble.

The white-painted art objects, benches and pergolas harmonize in the panorama with the silhouette of the monastery, while remaining minimalist in a modern way. As a result of the transformation, the residents of the town received a modern park with new entrance, swings, a tactile garden, viewing platforms, an updated road and path network, lighting and playgrounds.

In the future, it is planned to place quiet recreation areas, approaches to the water, observation platforms from viewpoints, walking routes on the territory, as well as organize infrastructure for outdoor activities, like ring cycle routes, and ski slopes in winter.

Project details

Design: Basis architectural bureau
Project Location: Istra, Russia
Typology: Eco-park
Built: 2021-2022
Area: 4 ha
Project team:
Ivan Okhapkin, Konstantin Pastukhov, Polina Pavlova, Shevtsova Valeria, Palchikov Dmitry, Garnenko Alexandra, Anna Anisimova, Andrey Kverkveladze, Sergey Kozlov
Partners: Urbanica
Istra town administration, The Ministry of landscape and public space development of Moscow region
Photo credits: © Dmitry Chebanenko

Basis architectural bureau

Basis architectural bureau

Basis works on improving cultural objects and urban areas. They specialize in unique public spaces created with attention to the context and show the identity of the place. They provide a full range of services for developing concepts, design and construction of embankments, parks, urban public spaces, cultural facilities, museums, theatres, art clusters, iconic commercial spaces and shopping centres with their own style and objectives. Each of the Basis firm’s projects is unique, meticulously designed and adapted to the surrounding context to the fullest degree. The office’s method is based on searching for the identity of the place, emphasizing its advantages, finding and reviving new meanings.