Saratov, Russia




688 ha across 5 sites


Invited Urban and Park Masterplan  Competition




JSC, Government of the Saratov Region, Administration of the Saratov City, Administrations Saratovsky, Tatishchevsky and Leninsky districts


Patrick Verhoeven, Martin Arfalk, Danny Bridson, Konstantin Miroshnychenko, Shan Jiang, Kinga Zemla, Cyril Pavlu, Francesca Savio, Chuhan Zhang


Karres En Brands, KOSMOS

An urban scale vision to imagine the Russian City of the future in Saratov.

Weaving Saratov

The proposal “Weaving Saratov” is an urban vision to envision the integrated development Saratov’s city centre. The invited international competition spanned 5 unique sites and included over 650 hectares of development and park land surrounding Central Saratov. After an intensive selection process the Weaving Saratov was selected as one of two finalists, and eventually joint winners, receiving the mandate to develop the proposal for the decommissioned Saratov-Tsentralny airfield, and the design of a climate-adaptive urban park at the heart of the city, Glebuchev Ravine.


Together these two key sites will set the agenda for resilient design practices in both public space and urban planning in Saratov. “Weaving Saratov” combines large-scale urban development, with landscape ecologies and architectural interventions to shape the model for the Russian city of the 21st century.

Over the next 10 years, the 240ha site of former Tsentralny Airport will be developed into a vibrant new district including more than 3 million m2 in a mix of housing, business, public and cultural venues, and recreational activities. The Glebuchev ravine will be transformed into a climate proof park, combining resilient water storage and cleaning with urban life and amenities.


The New City District is the perfect balance between airport heritage and local ecological networks. It will reconnect the city and provide a new centre for Saratov, stitching together the segregated surroundings and repairing the green ravine system. The main framework of the plan is set by the airport infrastructure as former runways become the plan’s principal public space arteries and disused built infrastructure is transformed into public venues adjoining the main green network. These new green arteries span the entire planning area and beyond, connecting to the surroundings and combining recreational amenities, ecology, and urban development. 


For Saratov to successfully realise the development of its airport site, it requires a connective and contextually respectful urban fabric. Saratov New City modifies the standardised typological development approach to create a contextual and landscape-driven urban extension. Each neighbourhood in Saratov New City grows from its surroundings. Rather than being projected onto the site, four new neighbourhoods rise from the ground up, respecting local landscape conditions and city fabric.


The Glebuchev ravine is the conduit for much of Saratov’s stormwater run-off towards the river Volga and currently acts as a barrier between the historic centre and the new urban expansion areas to the East, including the airport site.  A series of proposed bridge connections effectively link new urban areas to old while acting to concentrate public functions and water management infrastructure. These bridges then punctuate and activate the park below as a setting for playgrounds, sports and gym facilities, open café terraces, urban water system interpretation, and other public spaces and amenities. As such, the ravine combines a sustainable water collection system with exciting new connections and venues for play and activity, turning climate planning into a tool for community building and vibrant city life.


Enhance Saratov's ecological landscape

Celebrate recreational and cultural assets

Open up Saratov with humane and connective infrastructure

New City District

The New City District includes around 3 millions of square meters of mixed-use program and housing typologies that derive from airport’s heritage and local ecological networks. Stitching together segregated surroundings and repairing green ravines system, the area will have the potential to reconnect the city while providing a new urban center.

An iconic urban centre organised around landscape and heritage

An urban island with a strong identity and heritage

Connecting axis of urbanity

Re-connecting landscape layers

Catalyst for urban renewal

New Park at the heart of the city

Typological strategy builds on context

Campus neighbourhood

City centre neighbourhood

Garden neighbourhood

Yards neighbourhood

Urban infrastructure requirements

Airport heritage

Human scale and the everyday use of space

Glebuchev Ravine

Glebuchev Ravine is organised around a sustainable and innovative water collection system, but introduces also new connections and existing spaces for play and activities, offering tools for climate control and community building in a vibrant city environment.

Platforms of change: five sites dispersed in the city

The New City District on the grounds of former airport Saratov Central and parks in different regions of the city become a testing ground for resilient and socially vibrant development. Each of the four park projects demonstrate resilient landscape planning that combines strategic architectural interventions with comprehensive ecological strategies, defining a new green recreational network.

Victory Park

Victory Park integrates a complex composition of pathways and gardens that provide access to the elevated part of the park, while at the same time prevents landslides and repairs fragile hillside. At the top of the hill the visitors can explore open air exhibition of military museum with pieces laid out in a colorful garden.

Peski Island

Peski Island is a gem in the middle of Volga river with iconic recreational interventions, interwoven with ecological strategies that prevent erosion of the soil. 

Green Island

Green Island becomes ecological paradise as a lot of room is left for natural environment with few new focus points around the island, defined by using local vernacular typologies of floating wharf ‘’debarcader’’.