The Museum of Soviet Standardized Housing


The museum complex consists of a block from standardized five-storey residential buildings under the open sky.  The choice of a specific block had to be made with the criterion that the buildings should embody the culture mentioned above and the historical value of reflecting the historical image of the Soviet environment (all buildings had to have been built in the 1950s and 1960s), and it had to be possible to include an entire block in the Museum.  It was proposed to choose a group of buildings specifically of the block or paneling type, since their exterior view is associated to the greatest extent with a standardized residence.  The minimum size of a unit was three residential buildings.

The buildings are united by common grounds around the buildings, which also reflects the spirit of the time and is part of the museum complex.  The grounds contain zones or scenes of the Soviet lifestyle: a children’s playground, a relaxation area, a space for events, a housekeeping area, a summer movie theater and lecture hall, and a summer cafe.

The children’s playground with minimalist metallic play equipment is a museum exhibit and a play area, to the delight of the little visitors and where one can play Soviet games: classics, Cossacks and robbers, elastics, hot potatoes, pioneerball, and others.

Benches and tables are located in the recreation area for board games.  Here one can relax, meet people, and have a discussion on important questions.

The area for Soviet events: morning calisthenics to music (in which museum staff always take part, attracting hotel visitors and residents), holidays, demonstrations, and game events for training in construction technologies).

The housekeeping area consists of an area with clotheslines, a dog walking area, and an area with trash bins.

The summer theater consists of a stage and podiums for seats.  Here short concerts, lectures, and meetings are held, and in summer movies are shown.

There is a parking lot located within walking distance of the museum for visitors.

The area around the museum lives every day just as it did in the 1960s, showing visitors and guests the culture and lifestyle of that time.

A five-storey panel residence building from series 1‑515 in the New Cheryomushki section of Moscow was chosen as the model.

The five-storey residence buildings, built to standard designs, are being renovated with the goal of restoring them to their original external appearance and carrying capacity, replacing the utilities networks.  The original apartment layouts of each residence building is also being restored.

One of the residence buildings is proposed to be converted into the Museum with the following set of functions:

—an exhibition area for ongoing exhibits and demonstrations of the history of standardized Soviet design, the most typical designs, the construction process, the lifestyle of the Soviet citizen, elements of construction, materials, building components, objects of everyday life and furniture, full-sized real furnished apartments of that time, and full-sized cross sections of the standardized apartments and building layout,

—a library with Soviet and modern literature, an internet cafe, and a reading room,

—Soviet cafeterias,

—a souvenir shop.

The second residential building is planned to be converted into a cultural center.  An important task is to preserve the apartment layout.  The center includes:

—administration for the entire Museum,

—educational classes for holding courses, master classes, and other activities,

—a lecture hall,

—workshops for studying architectural modeling based on standardized designs using ready-made stockpiles and elements,

—a children’s architectural school,

—an exposition space for temporary exhibits,

—a Soviet cafeteria.

The third building (or several if possible) is proposed to be converted into a hotel with interiors having the styling of the 1960s.  The first floor of the building consists of the hotel’s administrative facilities.  On the remaining floors, each apartment will become a guest room with careful restoration of the historical look of apartments of the 1960s, 1970, and 1980s.

Now the Museum got it’s website!