Zaryadye Park


Centrally located steps from St. Basil’s Cathedral, Red Square and the Kremlin, Zaryadye Park sits on a historically charged site saturated by both Russia’s collective past and evolving aspirations. As a historic palimpsest, the 35-acre site has been populated by a Jewish enclave in the 1800s, as well as the foundations of a canceled Stalinist skyscraper, followed by the Hotel Rossiya—the largest hotel in Europe until its demolition in 2007. For five years, this central piece of Moscow real estate-encompassing a quarter of downtown Moscow— remained fenced as plans to extend its use as a commercial center by Norman Foster were underway.

  • Architects: Diller Scofidio + Renfro

  • Location: Ulitsa Varvarka, 8с1, Moskva, Russia

  • Area: 102000.0 m2

  • Project Year: 2017

In 2012, the City of Moscow and Chief Architect Sergey Kuznetsov organized a design competition to transform this historically privatized, commercial territory into a public park. An international design consortium led by Diller Scofidio + Renfro (DS+R) with Hargreaves Associates and Citymakers was selected out of ninety submissions representing 27 different countries. The chosen competition design sought to create a park borne of Russian and Muscovite heritage and one that draws on the latest construction technologies and sustainability strategies.


As the first new park to be built in Moscow in the last seventy years, Zaryadye provides a public space that resists easy categorization. It is at once park, urban plaza, social space, cultural amenity, and recreational armature. To achieve this simultaneity, natural landscapes are overlaid on top of constructed environments, creating a series of elemental face-offs between the natural and the artificial, urban and rural, interior and exterior. The intertwining of landscape and hardscape creates a ‘Wild Urbanism,” introducing a new offering to complement Moscow’s historically formal, symmetrical park spaces.


Characteristic elements of the historic district of Kitay-Gorod and the cobblestone paving of Red Square are combined with the Kremlin's lush gardens to create a new park that is both urban and green. A custom stone paving system knits hardscape and landscape together— generating a blend rather than a border—encouraging visitors to meander freely. Zaryadye Park is the missing link that completes the collection of world-famous monuments and urban districts forming central Moscow.


Traversing between each corner of the park, visitors encounter terraces that recreate and celebrate four diverse, regional landscapes found in Russia: tundra, steppe, forest, and wetland. These zones are organized in terraces that descend from northeast to southwest. Each layering over the next to create a set of programmed spaces integrated into the landscape: nature and architecture act as one. The sectional overlay also facilitates active and passive climate-control strategies that ensure visitors can enjoy the park through all seasons.


Natural zones provide places of gathering, repose, and observation, in concert with performance spaces and enclosed cultural pavilions. In addition to these programmed destinations, a series of vista points provide a frame for the cityscape to rediscover it anew. Each visitor’s experience is tailor-made for them and by them.

Reference: "Zaryadye Park / Diller Scofidio + Renfro" 08 Nov 2017. ArchDaily. Accessed 13 Aug 2020. <> ISSN 0719-8884

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