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    The Luzhniki swimming pool was opened alongside the Luzhniki stadium in 1956. Years later, the building got into an emergency state, and it was decided to recreate it. Thus, the Water Sports Palace had been erected on this site, and now it is one of the largest swimming facilities in Russia and Eastern Europe. The Palace houses swimming pools, a water park with slides, a lazy river attraction, a pool with an artificial wave and a thermal complex.

    Photo: Press service of the sports complex

    The Luzhniki swimming pool (formerly known as the swimming pool of the Lenin Central Stadium) was built according to the design of the architect A.V. Vlasov. It was part of the Olympic complex. Competitions in swimming, water polo and diving were hosted here. During the 1980 Olympics, it held the water polo competitions, in which the Soviet team won gold medals. For 60 years, it has hosted the competitions of three world championships, two European championships, 11 USSR championships and many other water sports competitions.

    Over time, the pool no longer met the requirements of international sports federations. Based on the results of the examination, it was decided to modernize the old building and create a modern multifunctional swimming complex on its foundation. Construction began in 2016 according to the project of the Moscow bureau UNK project and was completed in September 2019.

    In this project, the Metropolis company acted as the general designer and was engaged in the development of structural solutions and internal engineering systems at the stages of Project Documentation and Detail Design. One of the main technical tasks was to ensure increased standards of structural safety while maintaining architectural and planning solutions. As a result, expressive and beautiful facades hide complex structural solutions, which completely fulfill their purpose.

    Now the Water Sports Palace is a five-story building with one underground level. Its area is more than 50,000 m2 - 2.5 times the size of the old pool (19,700 m2).

    All facilities of the Luzhniki sports cluster are built in the same architectural style, so an important task of the reconstruction was to preserve the recognizable appearance of the area. The new building was designed in the style of the Olympic Complex, but at the same time a unique and memorable image was created.

    Photo: Evgeny Yegorov

    The concept of the Water Sports Palace is based on a modern interpretation of the architectural traditions of the 1950s. The facade of the complex is made in sand colors, like the building of the Grand Sports Arena, with the colonnade that was recreated. The main and side facades were decorated with replicas of 12 bas-reliefs, which exactly repeat the historical panels. They are made in the style of Soviet romanticism of the 1950s and depict competitions in various sports, athletes with cups and laurel wreaths, girls in swimsuits, naked figures that resemble antique statues. Also, the facades are decorated with an ornament of rings, reminiscent of the 1980 Olympics.

    For the new complex a lighting concept was developed with spotlights for significant architectural details. Due to it, the Olympic rings can be seen not only on the facades of the building, but also on lamps, fences, and on the fountain. This is generally the main stylistic element.

    The surrounding area was landscaped - new paths and flower beds appeared, trees were planted, benches and sculptures were installed, stylized as Soviet street design of the middle of the 20th century. For visitors and employees of the swimming center, there is an underground parking for 43 cars and a parking lot above ground for 265 cars.

    The swimming center at Luzhniki is equipped with a convertible roof that hangs over the building like a cylindrical glass passage. In just 15 minutes, sections of the roof can be moved apart in opposite directions. In the warm season, this helps to increase the comfort for the visitor's stay. In bad weather, artificial tropics will be provided with engineering systems that maintain the microclimate year-round, 24 hours a day. All engineering communications are neatly hidden inside the building, so they don’t affect a beautiful view of the Palace from the Sparrow Hills and the metro bridge.

    In the interiors of the Palace, there was also a place for modern sculpture: the Three Graces made of colored metal wire - a tribute to the Luzhniki logo. The flat drawing was turned into volume and the result was a dynamic and bright composition that glorifies sport, youth and beauty in a different interpretation, comparing to the 1950s.

    The Palace has three swimming pools: a 50-meter pool with ten lanes and two 25-meter pools with three lanes each. The building houses the first pool in Russia with a hydraulic bottom, which allows you to change the depth from a few dozens of centimeters to 1.6 m and teach swimming to children and people with limited mobility. The total water surface area of all the pools is 3,100 m2, which is 1.5 times more than it was before the reconstruction (2,000 m2).

    According to the principle of maximum openness, stained-glass windows are installed in the central pool facing the street and the entertainment area, which adds openness and light. Alongside one of the colonnades, outdoor pools are made, connected to the complex's hot swimming pools, allowing visitors to swim directly into the open air.

    The pools of the swimming center at Luzhniki meet the Olympic standard of the International Swimming Federation. They have the most modern water purification systems - 32 filters, as well as ozonation and ultraviolet water purification systems.

    Now the security system of the swimming center fully complies with the latest technologies for working with mass visiting facilities and anti-terrorist protocols. The palace was equipped with the most up-to-date software and hardware systems, which allow, among other things, to record the results of the swims directly into the visitor's personal account.

    The palace includes nine slides with a total length of 1.3 km and various water attractions. One of the slides has a bend going directly through the central atrium, and those who come to the building can hear people flying down the tube. An artificial wave is created in one of the pools; two pools are thermal and partially located under the open sky. The water attractions installed in the complex have no analogues in Russia.

    The total area of the water park is 12,500 m2. It is fenced off from the sports area by a transparent wall with a digital screen with dimensions of 7 and 13 m. Due to a special polymer film, its surface is normally transparent, but can turn into a video screen during the broadcast of competitions, film demonstrations, time display, water and air temperature data display.

    Source: website of the "Luzhniki" aquacomplex

    As a rule, water parks strive to emulate the aesthetics of the southern regions - sprawling plastic palm trees, wooden boardwalks, bungalow houses. The Palace of Water Sports moved away from this trend. The scenery and the entire environment are dedicated to the theme of water and beach sports, since the Palace, having also an entertainment connotation, is still a place for sports training and competition. Decorative elements, such as kites, surfboards and frisbee plates, enliven neutral interiors. And noise-absorbing ceilings resemble ripples of water.

    The water park has modern sound and lighting equipment and a stage for presenters. You can hold dances on the water and other public events. The picture on the multimedia screen is served by three projectors. There are switchboards to which cameras and lighting sets are connected. And on the street there is a place for parking and connecting a mobile television station. Due to this, you do not have to pull kilometers of wires from the car to the filming location.

    In addition, the complex has a modern thermal complex with eight types of baths and saunas, as well as a children's area with an artificial beach, a room for games and creativity, and a salt cave. There are also contrast pools, showers, treatment rooms and a relaxation area with sun loungers. To store small personal items in the water park area, safe boxes are equipped. You can charge your mobile phone directly in them.

    In addition, a boxing academy, a fitness center, a sports center for the whole family and a surf center are available to visitors. The food court of the complex consists of a restaurant with 250 seats, a cafe with 40 seats and an express self-service cafe in the water park area, as well as 2 phyto-cafes in the thermal health and sports areas.

    From an outdated sports facility, the pool has turned into a modern aquatic center for Muscovites to relax, while retaining all the opportunities for sportsmen. The complex can receive up to 10,000 guests per day.

    Key participants of this outstanding project were awarded for its successful implementation. In particular, Alexander Vorozhbitov, General Director of Metropolis, received a letter of appreciation from the Department of Construction of the City of Moscow for professionalism, conscientious work, and a great personal contribution to the construction of the object that has no analogues in Russia. Pavel Golovin, Chief Project Engineer of Metropolis, was awarded a Certificate of Merit.

    On the photo: Rafik Zagrutdinov with Alexander Vorozhbitov and Pavel Golovin, December 17, 2019

    Structural solutions

    The peculiarity of the structural scheme was determined by a rich functional zoning with a well-defined logistics of the water park, sports, commercial and auxiliary premises. Monolithic stair-lift blocks, which are the cores of stiffness, simultaneously perform supporting functions for metal structures of the upper levels of floors and roofs. This solution made it possible to implement bold architectural ideas and place a fifty-meter sports pool on the second floor, while providing a spacious lobby group on the first floor directly under the pool. And in the areas adjacent to the water park and the pool, it was possible to realize visually attractive open spaces and place exciting water attractions.

    The support of steel trusses on reinforced concrete structures is carried out through all-round movable spherical bearing parts, and bearing units developed by Metropolis specialists allow transferring loads of up to 650 tons. The implementation of these solutions made it possible to design large-span spatial metal structures, which are cross-trusses resistant to progressive collapse. Trusses with parallel belts and spans of 30 and 46 m have a height in the axes of the elements of 3.6 m, in which technical rooms and engineering communications are successfully located. The schematic diagram of the installation of the water park's metal structures was worked out already at the design stage, taking into account the weights of the shipping grades of the structural elements. Subsequently, this scheme was successfully implemented at the installation stage.

    When designing metal structures, special attention was paid to fire safety and anti-corrosion protection, since some of the structures are located in an aggressive environment. As a fire protection, an epoxy-based composition was chosen, which simultaneously performs the function of anti-corrosion protection – it was confirmed in laboratory tests. The selection of the finishing layer of the required color made it possible to fit the metal structures into the space of the water park, taking into account the requirements of the designers.

    The top-level steelwork is the basis for the aluminum roof support structure, which was developed by a world leader in the design and manufacture of roofing for swimming pools and water parks. At the junction points of aluminum trusses with the supporting structures of the building, the requirements of the roof developer in terms of support conditions and deformations were taken into account.

    The Water Sports Palace incorporated a large number of non-standard and original solutions of the entire project team, which made it possible to create a landmark and significant object that can brighten the lives of all its visitors.

    Figures and facts
    • Year 2019
    • Location Moscow, Luzhniki, 24, p. 4
    • Area 52 500 m2
    • Number of storeys 5
    • Number of underground storeys 1
    • Status Built
    • Architecture UNK Project
    • Customer State enterprise BSA "Luzhniki"
    • Website
    Scope of work
    • Design stages Project documentation

      Detail design

      Author's supervision
    • Architectural and structural design Technological solutions

      Structural solutions
    • Design of internal engineering systems Heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems

      Water supply and sewerage systems

      Power supply systems

      Low-current system

      Automation and dispatching systems
    • Organization of construction works production plan
    • Special sections Environmental protection measures

      Measures to ensure access for people with disabilities

      Energy efficiency

      Fire safety measures
    • Estimated documentation