zaha hadid architects (ZHA) has been selected to masterplan a 13.9-hectare area of novorossiysk, russia’s largest shipping port and the third busiest in europe by turnover. located on the black sea coast, connecting russia with the mediterranean, atlantic ocean, and suez canal, the industrial city offers direct links to rail and highway networks. in winning the international content, the london-based firm held off competition from miralles tagliabue / EMBT and rudy riccotti who placed second and third respectively.

zaha hadid novorossiysk
all images by VA, courtesy of zaha hadid architects



ZHA’s masterplan for novorossiysk’s ‘admiral serebryakov embankment’ integrates new public spaces and amenities for both the city’s residents and visitors. facilities for international conferences, trade fairs, and business congresses, as well as professional and academic seminars are also included as part of the plan. importantly, by restricting vehicular access, the design creates opportunities for outdoor leisure, sports, and recreation.

zaha hadid novorossiysk
the design creates opportunities for outdoor leisure, sports, and recreation



‘with its buildings orientated perpendicular to the sea front to maintain existing sea views from the city, the masterplan is interwoven with novorossiysk’s urban fabric in a porous configuration that reconnects the city with its coast, inviting residents and visitors to traverse the site via public plazas, gardens and parks,’ says zaha hadid architects. meanwhile, a new fishing port, marina, and piers allow access to the seashore on which the city was founded.

zaha hadid novorossiysk
the project integrates new public spaces and amenities for both residents and visitors



in order to develop the form of the site’s nine principal buildings, the design team applied the concept of ‘instancing’ in which nine iterations of a single form evolve in a gradient across the site. ‘as with time-lapse photography capturing nine instances of its subject over a period of time, this evolution sequence becomes the masterplan itself,’ explains ZHA. ‘the digital computational model developed for this masterplan in novorossiysk performs as an urban planning tool analyzing many different programmatic, environmental and socio-economic conditions to define the new buildings within the masterplan.’

zaha hadid novorossiysk
construction of the masterplan’s first phase is due to start in the second half of 2019



‘all nine buildings are informed by this digital model that simultaneously considers multiple iterations including program, orientation, environment, height and volume,’ the architects continue. ‘this parametric model enables designers and stakeholders to accommodate the functional, economic and other time-related fluctuations that influence each new phase of development while also maintaining the overriding architectural vision.’


the project’s formal development is explained in more detail in this short movie
video © morean – digital realities and revolution production studio



construction of the masterplan’s first phase — which includes facilities for civic, cultural, and corporate events, as well as the hotel — is due to start in the second half of 2019.



project info:


masterplanning and architectural design team
architect: zaha hadid architects (ZHA)
ZHA design director: christos passas
ZHA project architect: eider fernandez eibar
ZHA team leaders: ben kikkawa, alicia hidalgo lopez, melhem sfeir, kwanphil cho, leonid krykhtin
ZHA design team: aleksandar bursac, maria touloupou, ekaterina smirnova, maria-eleni bali, anna uborevich-borovskaya, nessma al ghoussein, christina polyviou, afsoon es-haghi, zsuzsana barát, paul tunnicliffe (analyst), vera kichanova (researcher) hussam chakouf, nastasija hahonina and liudmila harisson-jones (administrative support)


local architect: pride TPO, moscow (nikolay gordushin, lena myzhnokova)
landscape consultant: arteza, moscow (irina chebanenko)
urban planning consultant: prof. lawrence barth – architectural association school of architecture, london
creative programming consultant: another architect, berlin (daniel dendra)
environmental design consultant: buro happold, london
financial modelling consultant: price waterhouse cooper, moscow (anton panarin)
cost management and quantity surveying: rider levett bucknall