Vologda architects and restorers together with concerned citizens created an alternative brief for the bank protection project of the Vologda at open design workshop "Reka obyedinyaet" («River unites»).
— We decided that the problem should be solved not only by means of regulatory letters, we also need to try to develop some alternative vision: how this river could develop if we, the citizens, had the right to decide, - curator of the workshop, architect, and founder of "Project group 8" Nadezhda Snigireva told "7x7".
On the basis of the open design workshop created by the participants, the experts will formulate an alternative project for the improvement of the VI Army embankment. Later, this project will be presented to residents of the city.
— We are deciding now, how it will be made technically. I really expect the support of the Ministry of construction and the expert community, — urban environment expert Artyom Gebelev told "7x7". — No one except the residents does not have the right to decide the fate of the city in these matters. Unfortunately, the administration is into pushing the existing project forward at the moment. Our goal is to explain the situation to those who have not yet fully understood the thing, create an alternative, people's project, and provide an opportunity to choose the fate of the city freely.
According to Nadezhda Snigireva, activists insist on stopping the current works on the improvement of the embankment and dismantling of the installed structures. The architect pointed out that the same should not be allowed on the opposite bank of the river. Participants of the meeting together with Artyom Gebelev also came to the conclusion that it was necessary to give priority to pedestrian traffic on the embankment. In addition, activists and architects drew attention to the importance of preserving the views of the river and complete historical environment.
Professor and Candidate of Architecture Alexander Malinov drew attention to the hydrogeological problems of the existing project:
— Sane people usually divert water through oaken or stone drainage. You can't put anything on these banks. How can you work without restorers and research? Now the drainage system is plugged. There will be water everywhere in the basements, there will be a capillary suction. Buildings will begin to evaporate water through the walls.
The project of bank protection of the Vologda was developed without the participation of architects, ecologists, hydrogeologists, and restorers; its implementation, according to historic preservation activists, is conducted with serious violations. Meetings with the mayor, round tables, and rallies were held to solve the problem. Historic preservation activists defend their principles of bank protection and improvement: using modern technologies with the preservation of the green landscape, environmental friendliness, safety and architectural expressiveness.