Логотип CGES

Conference and Clause ‘Abandoned Buildings or Places of Culture?’

Published Date:

December 15-16, 2018

Planetarium No. 1, St. Petersburg

The event focused on the prospects of revitalizing abandoned buildings in St. Petersburg – historic mansions, former factory premises, and Soviet ‘houses of culture’ – by means of cultural projects.

During the Conference, urbanists and representatives of creative spaces from St. Petersburg and Riga shared their experiences of tactical and strategic redevelopment of abandoned buildings. Jazefs Bikše presented work of the non-profit organization Free Riga, which has been activating vacant buildings in Riga through temporary art projects since 2013. Sofia Andreyeva shared the experience of self-organization of the grassroots creative community ‘Zavod34’. Cases of commercially successful creative spaces were also discussed: Evgeniy Gudov told about Planetarium No. 1 and Lumiere Hall located in the former gas-holders at Obvodny channel and Oksana Olshevskaya presented Yasnaya Polyana co-working space in a historic mansion on Petrogradsky island. Rules and restrictions in redeveloping historical heritage were discussed by Ilya Sabantsev. Natalia Belyakova gave advice on the marketing of cultural spaces.

During the clause, several interdisciplinary teams, supported by representatives of QULLAB, ARTS4CITY, ‘Dvor’, and ‘Archi-klausura’ project teams, considered four cases of abandoned buildings in St. Petersburg and proposed concepts of their cultural revitalization. The jury consisting of architects Ilya Filimonov and Daniyar Yusupov, and a sociologist Aleksandra Nenko awarded the victory to the ‘MUKA’ project in the industrial gothic building of the former flour-grinding plant at 4 Malaya Mitrofanyevskaya str. The project was considered the most expressive, sustainable and monetizable.

Overall, 230 people registered for the conference, and 20 people took part in the clause. The event received good feedback both from the guests and from the curators.