TYPE: Improvement of urban environment
LOCATION: Russia, Irkutsk Region, Irkutsk, Leninsky District
AREA: 11,54 ha
CUSTOMER: VostSibStroy Limited Liability Company
PERIOD OF PERIOD: February - April 2017
STATUS: at the stage of implementation (1st stage)
CREATORS: Sergey Mayarenkov, Andrey Krasilnikov, Polina Zaslavskaya, Anastasia Repina, Daria Kremleva, Olesya Semina
PARTICIPANTS: Vera Mikhailovna Shlenova (Chairman of the Presidium of the All-Russian Society of Nature Protection)
PARTNERS: Regional Council of the All-Russian Society for Nature Conservation, Irkutsk Tomson A.K. Thomson Gardeners' Club, Irkutsk City Administration

Based on the urban planning analysis, the main axes of the Garden are formed, the functional zones with the preservation and restoration of historical plantings, the project of reconstruction and landscaping is carried out on the basis of scenarios of activities in the area.
Thomson Garden, which is of great importance as for the science of breeding, as well as for residents and visitors to our city, was founded in 1914 by amateur horticulturist August Karlovich Thomson. Thanks to the unique technology used by August Karlovich, already in the late 20-ies on the territory of the garden appeared many plants not typical for the harsh Siberian climate: lemon, almond, Manchurian nut, ash, elm, apple, pear, plum, cherry and much more. The historical, cultural and environmental value of the garden was used to give it the status of a specially protected area of cultural and historical significance.

The task of the project — not only to restore the unique planting of crops, but also to resume the educational and horticultural and experimental function in the garden, to attract the attention of residents of the city to the careful attitude to the valuable natural areas, to the ecologization.

The axes of the garden are formed on the basis of the existing and planned system of public spaces and transport and pedestrian connections of the residential area. Entrance groups are oriented to the pedestrian directions leading to the public transport stops, near the main entrances, behind the territory of the garden, parking spaces are provided for private vehicles and excursion buses.

The entire territory of the garden is divided into several functional zones: historical (including the zone of reconstruction of the historical alley), administrative zone, trade and exhibition zone, the zone of dendrological collection, landscape park zone (including a garden of exotic plants, native flora garden, fruit crops collection area, herbs garden, apothecary garden, artificial reservoir), nursery, experimental and production field, an educational zone. All functional zones are connected by a system of flexible pedestrian paths and paths, illuminated and equipped with small architectural forms.

The main entrance group is an inviting square, formed by the one-storey administrative pavilions; they accommodate specialized hobby clubs, the A.K. Thomson museum, the consultation center, and the conference hall. Other pavilions of trade and exhibition direction line the central alley that connects the Garden with the new residential development.
To the right of the alley, behind the perennial birch grove, the project envisages an open exhibition area, which will become the center of the city’s theme fairs, exhibitions and festivals. Such events will allow the Garden to function and provide self-care without the need for additional funds.

The glass architectural glass volume of the Orangery is being built on the historic site, its southern facade framing the Garden’s main square, from which all major pedestrian routes diverge.

At the southwestern end of the Garden is the amphitheater, the starting point for educational tours. Near the lower level of the amphitheater, an educational and experimental area with seedbeds and greenhouses is being formed, an educational center is also envisioned on the territory of the Garden for classes on a permanent basis (a tribute to the historical status of the Garden — "School of Gardeners").

Bordering the experimental sites is a nursery, the creation of which is associated with its historical location and the preserved planting of some crops. The development of industrial and economic activities will allow, on the one hand, to continue the Thomson tradition of charitable provision of planting material for social institutions, on the other hand — to create the material basis for the viability of the garden.

The reconstruction project proposes to continue the historical alley located in the northern part of the garden, preserve the memorial area named after August Karlovich, restore the historical object — the gazebo, and place a small fountain in place of the historical well with a crane. Cobblestone alley with small shady islands, where you can find historical facts and photographs, is the most memorable place of the garden.

Thus, the Garden’s reconstruction project neighbors the restoration/preservation of historical plantings and traditions with the introduction of modern landscape methods of organizing the topography and technology.

The project is included in the municipal program "The formation of a comfortable urban environment," approved by the scientific-expert council of the Irkutsk regional branch of the All-Russian Society of Nature Conservation, it was supported by members of the Public Chamber of Irkutsk and the Club of gardeners-experimenters A.K. Thomson, specialists from the Botanical Garden of the IGU and Irkutsk Agricultural University, MUP "Gorzelenkhoz", representatives of state environmental authorities and the scientific community.

Awards and publications