The Radical Architecture of Kyiv

Five Ukrainian urbanists discuss the buildings, parks, and neighborhoods that make Kyiv unique.

April 4, 2022, 5:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Expocenter of Ukraine

Expocenter of Ukraine, once a propaganda-laden exhibition of Soviet power, has come back to life in recent years as a festival and event venue. | Leonid Andronov / Expocenter of Ukraine

As war batters Ukraine's historic cities, Megan Buskey, a journalist living in Kyiv, interviews five Ukrainian urbanists about the public spaces and buildings in Ukraine's capital that they value most, and those that are threatened by the current conflict.

Oleksandr Anisimov, chief specialist in the department of urban mobility and street infrastructure for the Lviv city council, points to "a housing complex from the late Soviet era known unofficially as 4blocks. Stretching across four city blocks, it was built from 1985 to 1994 and is one of the few examples of what could be called Ukrainian postmodernism." The complex, which has been continuously inhabited since its completion, was radical in its design, which let the community shape its construction through a rare open competition. "Each of its 19 buildings had a different architect who integrated environmental features and existing buildings, rather than ignoring them or tearing them down. Despite the looming economic crisis, the complex was audaciously decorated." Anisimov sees it as symbolic of "an alternative vision of a vibrant 1990s that never happened."

Others point to Kyiv's unassuming but homey residential neighborhoods, the Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy (now the Expocenter of Ukraine), the Flowers of Ukraine building (a complex once threatened with demolition and now preserved as a cultural-heritage site), and the city's vibrant green spaces and rivers. Read their stories in the source article below.

Saturday, March 19, 2022 in The Atlantic

A image of the World's Columbian Exposition overlayed with a picture of Keanu Reeves in the rain from the movie Point Break.

Keanu Reeves Set to Play Daniel Burnham in ‘The Devil in the White City’

Planning is going to get a new level of star power as a limited series adaptation of The Devil in the White City gets ready for television screens in 2024.

August 8, 2022 - Reel Chicago


Opinion: Aging Population, Declining Fertility Requires Long-Term Investments

Faced with the dire consequences of a one-two punch of aging populations and declining birthrates, one writer has suggestions for how policy can help ensure a better future.

August 9, 2022 - Financial Times

People gather on a street with no cars during the L.E.A.F. Festival of Flowers in the Meatpacking District of New York City.

The Tide Has Turned Against Open Streets

Once a promising development for advocates pushing for a less car-centric future in cities, the open streets movement has ceded significant ground to cars since the height of the pandemic.

August 14, 2022 - The New York Times

Jacksonville Skyway monorail train passing on elevated rail in front of downtown buildings

Jacksonville To Replace Monorail With Autonomous Shuttles

The city’s aging monorail system will be repurposed as part of an expanded 10-mile shuttle system.

7 minutes ago - Smart Cities Dive


Richmond Weighing How to End Parking Requirements

A series of town hall meetings will allow the public a chance to give feedback about zoning changes in Richmond, Virginia that would include the end of parking requirements.

1 hour ago - WTVR

Three blue Amazon delivery trucks at bays at a distribution center

Key Warehouse Centers Challenge Distribution Center Expansion

Communities near major e-commerce distribution centers are increasingly resisting new construction, citing air pollution and other public health impacts.

August 16 - Bloomberg CityLab

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Hand Drawing Master Plans

This course aims to provide an introduction into Urban Design Sketching focused on how to hand draw master plans using a mix of colored markers.