The proposal for the Kyiv Urban Wildlife Park by Katya Larina, Yevgeniya Pozigun, Irina Klixbull, and Roman Pomazan responds to what the place means for the thousands of people who cross the area which is nestled between two fast developing banks. Therefore, the design becomes a development of a decision-making instrument which is intended to guide the future development of Kyiv Islands. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Proposed strategy combines 3 main streams of development in different proportions. The first one envisions Kiev Islands as a system which protects and nourishes the natural environment of the Islands harmed by the activity of Kyiv megalopolis. This part of the strategy proposes a development of green infrastructure: water cleaning system, reclamation of the polluted water bed and bio-fuel production.
The second part of the strategy aims to convert Kyiv islands into the center of the Research-Educational network of the Dnieper’s river ecological corridor. This is achieved by gradual development of Research clusters along with mobile Green Infrastructure Monitoring Units. Educational aspect is fulfilled by the placement of the Educational Center with Campus which activity would include not only collaboration with educational institutions but also involvement of Kyiv general public.
Third part is focused on redevelopment and densification of the already existing parts of islands aiming to bring a new high quality of public and cultural environment to Kiev Islands area. Most of the programs are profit generating and potentially attractive for the developers.
All projects contained in three strategies are interconnected into a self-sufficient system of ecological network. In modern conditions of the contemporary megalopolis the sprawl of development over this territory will undoubtedly happen over time. It is hard to stop this process nevertheless we believe it is possible to regulate the development by introducing the concept of adjustable buffer zones as a protective belt for the natural environment.
Driver principles of buffer zones concept imply that any new development has to happen only in already developed zones, which separated from natural environment by the buffer zone which contains elements of green infrastructure, ecopark facilities and low intensity public and cultural programs. Programs and material organization of buffer zone in some part plays a role of physical boundary between human activity and nature or creates attenuation of human activity towards zones of natural environment.
Proposal for the central area of Kyiv Islands Chosen site for the detailed masterplan includes Truhaniv, Dolobetskyi and Venetsiantskyi Islands. It shows how the proposed flexible strategy will be applied in more detailed scale in 3 phases. Sites for the redevelopment and new projects are indicative and leave potential for the evolution and evolvement of future spin-off projects. Apart of redevelopment and densification of the recreational and leisure activities on islands three main new projects are proposed: Research Centre, Educational Centre and Kyiv Islands Museum.
Research and Education centers are collaborated in studying and re-branding of the unique ecology of Kyiv Islands. It is also an experimental site of introduction of the most advanced technologies of regeneration of the natural environment. The presence of the Museum is vital for the Promotion and Popularization of the area.
Museum develops in few stages and constitutes of the permanent event spaces, exhibition area and mobile floating pavilions which migrate between the islands during the warm months and become adjacent to one of the permanent programs during winter month. Floating pavilions temporary exhibitions highlights specific aspects of the eco-system of each of the islands. Kiev public would be encouraged to contribute into to the creation of exhibitions. The similar principle is used for two different types of research mobile units: green infrastructure monitoring units, and eco-monitoring units, which can be also a monitoring centers attracting tourist and locals. Programs and material organization of buffer zone in some part plays a role of physical boundary between human activity.
Water strategy Nowadays the water is one of the most crucial subjects in the world when it comes to environmental concerns. it is partly due to a dangerous increase in pollution levels in streams, groundwater and sea, and secondly the possibility for the emergence of a shortage of fresh water of drinking quality. Additionally, the climate changes add the issue of water level rising and increase in precipitation to the list of challenges. Cities by the water are considered as extreme cities and challenged by future prognoses and threats caused by the water. Flood, damage and pollution threaten areas close to the water edge, but the issue becomes even more complicated in dense urban areas. Such the global concerns apply also for Kiev, the modern capital on the banks of the Dnieper river. The city area and the islands territory face problems with the river water pollution, seasonal floods and deterioration of sewerage system. Our research of those issues shows that the island development strategy must include a solution to the problem of water purification.
Proposed water cleaning strategy of Dnieper River around the islands The overall water use and cleaning strategy is based on the general analysis of the river edges, islands nature, contamination actors, potential resources and the water flow simulation. Nowadays, a great number of industrial estates are located along the Dnieper banks, affecting the natural environment of the islands and causing water pollution. Main pollution in the river water consists of: high concentration of carbon-, hydrogen- and oxygen isotopes. The pollution of that kind can cause premature aging, immunosuppressant and mental deficiency. Our strategy concerning the water contamination is to create a network of cleaning facilities along the river front according to polluted areas. We propose to use abandoned industrial areas to place water treatment plant and also the algae treatment center where all the waste from the bottom of the river will be processed into biofuel.
We also propose to use mobile technologies to monitor water pollution. For example there can be used “mini-labs” inside the vans that allow monitoring quite a large area with a regular frequency. Using “mini-lab” it is also possible to detect an exact place and time of contamination. “Mini-labs” are supposed to be used by different independent environmental services.
With regard to the islands, we propose a water cleaning and treatment system that is integrated in landscape and buildings, and shapes space that adds value and creates good microclimate, biodiversity and possibility for local water cleaning and reuse. We see it as a system that will make people more responsible about environment and water, and create public awareness of water issue and sustainable possibilities.
One of the focuses of the cleaning strategy is the use of wetland areas as a natural water cleaning system. Most of the islands have lakes and low-lying areas that create a good potential to develop plant-based water cleaning. Using the existing landscape quality of marshland at the islands, we propose to develop wetland parks. The idea is to use existing lakes and ponds at the islands by adding more reeds, willow and other filter plants areas around them. Then connect water areas by channels, so water goes through lakes and get purified. Thus existing lakes with special vegetation become a filtration park.
Ecological Education The wetlands are designed also to help with the reintroduction of wildlife into the site. The visual demonstration of the water cleaning system aims to educate visitors of the park about the natural process of water purification. A living ecology will be also supported by the recycled grey water generated from surrounding buildings at the development areas. This system of recycling helps to create an ever changing environment in which the visitor can experience waste water management in a new way. Part of the proposal is to establish rainwater and grey water collection system, that can be reused in the future community development. In transition (buffer) zones the water becomes a visible feature in the public space to mark the edge. The water channels are integrated into public areas and supported by water related activities and functions. The clean water of the Dnieper River is a keystone for sustainable future development of the city and the ecosystem in the national scale.