A Blue Lagoon caterpillar and other surprises of Tyufeleva Roshcha Park

A Blue Lagoon caterpillar and other surprises of Tyufeleva Roshcha Park
Photo: Press service of the Urban Development and Construction Complex
Tyufeleva Roshcha is another example of how an abandoned industrial area can be converted into a popular recreation area. The rebuilding of the ZIL industrial zone shows clearly how to create a new high-quality urban environment. The city has focused on housing, the transport infrastructure, and creating jobs and setting up leisure and recreational areas here.

This summer, Tyufeleva Roshcha is the most unusual, newest and most stylish park in the city. Visitors are impressed with its overhanging pergola, the park’s location and unique history.

The park’s history

Nikolai Karamzin who wrote the famous History of the Russian State liked to stroll here. In his story Poor Liza, published in 1792, he described the area around the Simonov Monastery. After that, people started calling Lisiy (Fox) Pond Liza’s Pond after the story’s protagonist.

For centuries, Moscow’s grand princes and tsars owned a coniferous forest near the monastery. Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich, the second ruler from the House of Romanov, used to hunt here in the 17th century.

In 1916-2013, the area, now called Danilovsky District, had Likhachov Automotive Plant (ZIL) facilities. Most have been demolished at this point. The new park that has emerged here resembles Zaryadye Park, built in place of the demolished Rossiya Hotel in central Moscow.  


New York’s influence felt

Famous Dutch designer and urbanist Jerry Van Eyck, director of New York-based !Melk studios, worked on this project. By the way, the Diller Scofidio + Renfro architectural office, also in New York, designed Zaryadye Park near the Kremlin.

Jerry Van Eyck decided to preserve the feel of the ZIL industrial site throughout the park. He designed a pergola that looks like an industrial assembly line and ran it throughout Tyufeleva Roshcha Park.

He said his team was inspired by the place’s history. They recreated the park’s dominant architectural feature and called it an assembly line. The custom-made pergola or walkway arbor is a unique feature in landscape architecture, he added.

This is not a classic summer-house or pavilion. At the same time, it is an enclosed 1.3-kilometre promenade, observation deck and a public art space. But the ambitious designer had the pergola made with CORTEN steel that never changes colour even when rusting. This steel brand pays tribute to a plant that is now history.

This is what makes the park special. The designer called the pergola a caterpillar.

The pergola’s structure fulfils many functions, acting as a promenade and a shopping promenade, he noted. It is called on to merge various elements, levels and even eras, he said. Regardless of whether you are walking on the pergola or passing underneath, climbing or descending the stairways or entering kiosks en route, it is always the park’s unifying element and its counterpoint, he added. 

Crystal pond

A 3,000-square metre pond up to two metres deep in some places is another local attraction. The pond’s clean and transparent water rivals that of a mountain lake. This was accomplished by building a huge concrete pool that prevents contact between the water and the ground.

Its unique multi-stage water purification system uses filters with sand, ultraviolet radiation and ozone decontaminators. The pond has become a real Blue Lagoon, with parasols and recliners on the shore.

For adults and children

Trees and bushes cover almost half of the park’s area. The park features about 3,500 coniferous and broad-leaf trees, including oaks, pines, linden, larch, alder, junipers, cornel-trees, and shrubs and plants including spiraeas and roses, as well as 97 flowerbeds. The park’s sports facilities offer exercisers, and volleyball, basketball and tennis courts.

Children can use the multi-level playground with trampolines, slides and a small rock-climbing facility. Dog owners can walk their pets nearby.

Tyufeleva Roshcha Park is not the only recent example of new trees and shrubs in the city’s districts. In 2017, the city established and improved 56 parks, including 50 district parks, as well as 129 green zones. The number of city parks has doubled over the past few years. In late 2017, the capital already had 490 improved parks and green areas.

City within a city

Tyufeleva Roshcha Park was established under an ambitious project to reorganise the ZIL industrial zone. Apart from a leisure/recreational area, plans include housing and a diverse transport infrastructure. An overpass now spans the Moscow Central Circle (MCC) belt railway, linking the industrial zone with Andropov Prospekt. Tekhnopark metro station that opened nearby will serve as a transit link, and the MCC’s ZIL station is also nearby.

It will take about ten years to fully rebuild the industrial district that will turn into a real city within a city with its own transport infrastructure, social facilities, housing and jobs, as well as museums and retail. It has already been decided that the Moscow branch of the Hermitage will be built at the Vesnin Brothers Boulevard-Rodchenko Street intersection.

The world-class Dream Island amusement park, now under construction on the Nagatinskaya flood-plain, will also attract thousands every day.