Dry deck fountains and artificial ponds: The city gets its water back

July 1
City administration

Moscow often saw its ponds filled in with soil during its active urban development phase; rivers and brooks were rerouted via collectors. The opposite trend has taken hold, and water is becoming an important element of landscaping designs. The capital creates new water features under the My District programme. This story highlights several of these projects.  

Dry deck fountains for children and adults

Everyone knows that water calms down one’s nerves and eliminates stress. Consequently, water remains highly important in various leisure and recreation areas. Earlier, fountains were installed in areas without any ponds or rivers. Today, architects and designers are offering new concepts for interacting with water. Dry deck fountains are especially popular, and they owe their name to the fact that they lack standard bowls or reservoirs, which are hidden underground, and one gets the impression that water is gushing straight from the asphalt surface.

The first dry deck fountains appeared in Moscow’s Babushkinsky Park and the Muzeon Park of Arts in 2013. The latter’s dry deck fountain remains the largest in the city, with an area of 840 square metres. A fountain in Khodynskoye Pole Park is somewhat smaller, at 778 square metres. The Lilac Garden fountain spurts water up at a preset angle and creates a gallery of water arches, so that children can play Rucheyok (Stream), an old Russian team-building game, here.

Water dance: the most unusual dry fountains

Many fountains are beautifully illuminated, and some of them even “sing.” For example, the fountain in Tagansky Children’s Park is famous for its evening “performances” to the music of Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johann Strauss and Dmitry Shostakovich. Fountains in the Babushkinsky and Khodynskoye Pole parks also perform melodious compositions in the evening.

Children deserve the best: Water playgrounds galore

Playground designers want to provide children with something unusual that serves an educational purpose. Water playgrounds are an ideal solution. In 2017, Tagansky Children’s Park received the first such playground. A large sandbox was fitted with hydrants, bowls and canals, a watermill and an Archimedes (water) screw. All these devices fascinated young researchers and plunged them into the wildly exciting world of physical experiments.

A similar facility called the Water Station soon appeared in Gorky Park and became part of the Salyut playground. Although there is no sand here, children can use numerous canals and dams, as well as water guns.

Artificial ponds, a new decorative element

The conversion of industrial zones and vacant lots into public spaces is an important urbanistic trend, but such places have few water bodies. To solve this interesting problem, architects suggest creating artificial ponds.

A pond in Tyufeleva Roshcha Park at the former Likhachev Automotive Works is an excellent example. Architect Jerry Van Eyck has created a water body shaped like a giant drop of water with an azure colour, its main distinguishing feature. He achieved this effect by using a concrete bowl that prevents any contact between the water and the ground. The pond also has a unique multistage water purification system with sand, ultraviolet and ozone components.

A Blue Lagoon caterpillar and other surprises of Tyufeleva Roshcha Park

Artificial and slightly marshy ponds decorate Zaryadye Park, where people can sit on a rocky bank and admire water lilies and reeds in the very centre of Old Moscow.

An artificial pond in Khodynskoye Pole Park has clean lines and is ringed with embankments with bridges, piers and ramps for entering the water. The newly-opened Palmira Park in the Kurkino District has become a favourite attraction for children.

Source: mos.ru

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