04 August 2020

An SPbGASU graduate won a prestigious international architectural competition UnIATA

Elena Panfilova, an SPbGASU graduate, who dedicated her FQW to the development of coastal areas in the southern part of Sestroretsk, received a winner's certificate in the “Editors Choice” nomination at the prestigious international architectural competition of graduation design projects UnIATA. Elena performed the design under the guidance of the head of the architectural studio, Associate Professor of the Department of Urban Development Michael Vilensky, Candidate of Architecture, This is the only work from Russia that has been awarded by the jury.

Project of a Saint Petersburg GASU graduate for Sestroretsk

Elena Panfilova’s FQW: spatial urban development of a post-industrial zone

A graduate of the St. Petersburg GASU

Elena Panfilova

More about the work

With the spread of residential development in the periphery of St. Petersburg, natural spaces are constantly shrinking. There are fewer opportunities for environmentally balanced development of territories in the process of multi-storey housing construction.

Elena Panfilova researched what could be the prospects for the purposeful formation of green environmental infrastructure integrated with new development. She examined the coastal areas of the Gulf of Finland.


✔ One of such territories is the area of Sestroretsk. The city has a diverse, intermittent housing development and complex terrain.


Within the limits of the design there is a part of already existing buildings, both residential and of public function, which should be included in design offers.

A large part of the FQW is a volumetric urban planning analysis of the coastal area of Sestroretsk, which identifies its problems and the development potential. For example, the selected area is in the flood risk zone of the Gulf of Finland surging wave formation. Taking into account this and other problems, including the harsh climate, a strategy is proposed for the use of various methods to protect the area from flooding, most of which refer to the experience of countries with similar climatic conditions.

The alumna has come up with proposals for comprehensive development of the territory, which take into account landscape conditions and can form an attractive environment for city visitors. The work is an alternative solution to the existing design project in the area of the planned Sestroretskiy inland.

"For several years now, the theme of coastal transformation has been at the peak of popularity, simultaneously affecting the efficiency of their use, environment and transport. The interest expressed by the members of the international jury in the work presented confirms this. Experience has shown that it is important to involve the public in solving global problems at the example of a specific location. Only then is it possible that the topic touched upon in the life of a particular territory will find interest among foreign colleagues and resonate. Our task is to create a product that meets modern development goals under the conscientious supervision of the manager. The further path of the project will be determined by those who will be able to see its potential, the invested forces and ideas, be it compatriots or foreign colleagues," said Elena Panfilova.

“As the supervisor of Elena's work, I would like to note that we all value international recognition reflecting the achievements of both the author and our workshop and the university. Individuality of thought and the breadth of understanding of problems is what certainly wins both in this work and Elena’s creativity as a whole. Everyone has one’s own approach, but for an architect the moment of competitive practice is always important. The competition is a platform where there are different views, and victory is not only a success, but also the result of great work! I sincerely congratulate Elena and wish her further creative achievements,” Mikhail Vilensky shared his impressions.

UnIATA is an annual competition, which represents talented architects, urban planners and landscape architects of the world, capable of solving current problems and meeting challenges, and their graduation projects. The event is one of the largest graduation presentations offering an insight into current trends in world design and architecture in general.

More: https://uni.xyz/projects/depressive-coastal-territories-developme

Text: Anastasia Blinova

✔ Learn more about the training options at the Department of Urban Planning

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