Andrey BOCHKAREV. Muscovites will receive comfort class housing

Andrey BOCHKAREV

Head of the Moscow Construction Department on using modern technologies for district development during renovation

Andrey Bochkarev – hereditary builder. He graduated with distinction from Tyumen Civil Engineering Institute. He was offered a job in a prestigious Canadian construction company while he was still a student. He was one of the first Russian experts to hold managerial positions in major foreign companies, and was involved in the construction of a number of unique facilities. He has been head of the Moscow Construction Department since 2010. PhD Economics.  He has a letter of acknowledgment from the Mayor of Moscow.

The new apartment blocks included in the capital’s housing renovation program will be built using the most advanced technologies. This includes utilities, energy efficiency, and apartment finishing. High-quality, comfortable apartment blocks will be built on the site of the dilapidated five-storey buildings, and new neighborhoods with all modern conveniences will be created around them.

What kind of housing will replace the five-storey buildings? The emphasis will be on cast-in-place building construction: 70% of the buildings will be cast-in-place and 30% will be upgraded panel high-rise buildings. Nearly all of Moscow’s integrated building construction enterprises have perfected manufacturing and have passed the necessary quality tests and expert examinations. Each project will be customized according to the features of a given neighborhood.

The first apartment layouts were presented at the Moscow Urban Forum. All wishes of residents expressed at public hearings were taken into account when planning the layouts and room finishing requirements.

The new projects allow for construction of housing with different levels, number of floors and configurations. Each of them will have spacious, comfortable hallways, entrances with low thresholds and ramps for residents with disabilities, as well as elevators that descend to the level of the entrances so they won’t have to go down stairs to reach them. Enhanced security has been taken into account: everything happening in the common areas will recorded on video surveillance cameras operating 24 hours a day.

The buildings will have a system to automatically control water and heat supply, depending on weather conditions, and energy-efficient lighting will save money when using public utilities. Heat will also be regulated using energy-efficient batteries. Water and power usage readings from individual meters in apartments will be transferred automatically.

Plastic windows to protect against dust and noise will be installed in the rooms. Each apartment will have a protruding or recessed balcony, along with wall-mounted cages for installing air conditioners. The balconies are equipped with double-glazed windows and ceramic tiles on the floor. Entrance doors will be made of steel, with heat insulation and increased noise insulation, and interior doors will be wooden, with fittings.

More importantly, the new housing will have the same or even more area than the old apartments, thanks to a more spacious kitchen, entrance, bathroom, bathroom and toilet. The actual interiors are harmoniously matched. These standards will be identical in all apartment buildings. Everything is designed so that people will experience as little stress and as much pleasure as possible. Tenants will still be able to make alterations.

Modern renovations will be made in the apartments. Finishing costs will be approximately 30-40% higher than before. The walls in the rooms will be covered with non-woven fabric rather than wallpaper. The ceilings will be painted with acrylic latex paint, and the floors will be laminated with acoustic backing. Instead of the usual sockets, chandeliers will be hung right away, and the interconnection provides safe switches and scratch-resistant sockets. Cable channels will be laid in the panels. Interior doors will have handles, locking bars, door stops and reliable hinges.

Kitchens will be finished with light-colored wallpaper that can be painted over. The splash guard is made of light-colored tiles not only over the sink, as before, but along the entire length of the work area. The sink will be made of stainless steel and will have a cabinet installed underneath. Thanks to the number of outlets, tenants will not have problems arranging appliances and kitchen sets. The electric stoves are also designed for energy-efficiency and enhanced safety.

The new apartments will have separate bathrooms. The floor and walls are finished with tile. The bathrooms are outfitted with a heated chrome-plated towel rack and an access point to utilities. They will have a sink with a mixer and a steel tub with protective shielding and high-quality mixers for showers and surface-mounted waterproof lighting fixtures.

The capital’s housing renovation program includes total demolition and construction of new districts. The development plan includes the construction of social facilities, such as schools, kindergartens, health clinics, sports facilities and others. Improvement of neighborhoods, parks, walkways and lighting systems is also provided. The option of locating separate multi-storey parking garages and street parking has been provided. These facilities will be also be built according to the new standards.

Comfort-class housing for renovation will go through six quality control stages. The first is to verify that the development plans comply with regional urban planning standards. Experts will assess the availability of social, utility and transport infrastructure. At the second stage, compliance with standards for noise insulation and the requirements for residential comfort and safety is verified.

The third stage involves a state expert review of the design documentation. Experts will check for compliance with the requirements of the «comfortable housing» standard. At the fourth stage, the technical authority will monitor the quality of the construction and finishing materials used by the builder and their compliance with current standards. The fifth stage involves monitoring by the Moscow State Construction Supervision Committee.

At the final stage, an opinion on compliance of the apartment building with the design is issued. The key condition here will be high-quality, full operation of all building systems. The building receives a commissioning permit only after this.