Nächstes Projekt 12/20  

März / April 2023

Universität der Künste, Berlin


Analysis of the urban potential of the Arctic ports in Russia. Typological solutions for the residential environment of the Pevek port city

von Polina Svetlitskaya


Universität der Künste, Berlin






Prof. Bettina Götz, Prof. Dr. Susanne Hauser, Alexandra Chechetkina




Vectorworks, Qgis, Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesing, Sketchbook

We all know what global warming is and what causes it. Every year we experience the consequences of this process in the form of sudden natural disasters of different scales. But for many years, due to the global warming, a slow, but no less dangerous process has been taking place - the degradation of permafrost. Permafrost? - you may ask. Permafrost is ground that continuously remains below 0°C for two or more years. Permafrost covers at least 25% of Earth’s surface.

The country with the largest permafrost area is Russia. Permafrost  covers 65% of the country's surface. This territory is home to 5.4 mln ppl. Permafrost covers the entire territory of the Arctic in Russia. When we hear the word Arctic, we imagine a deserted snowy land. But 2.5 mln ppl live in the Arctic in Russia, it is more than the population of Latvia.

The logical question would be why people even live in the Arctic in Russia? The answer to this question lies in the history of the country. Indigenous peoples have always lived in the north. The plan for the development of the North existed in the Russian Empire, but it reached its peak during the Soviet Union, first prisoners of the Gulag system were sent there, and then a full-scale creation of infrastructure with jobs and northern salary bonuses began. Thus, people have lived in the Arctic for generations.
When people moved to the Arctic in the middle of the 20th century, no one knew about global warming and permafrost. Today, these topics are very relevant, due to the global warming, permafrost is melting, which leads to natural and infrastructural destruction and is a direct threat to humanity in general and to the inhabitants of the Arctic.

The Northern Sea Route runs along the coast of the Arctic of Russia. The transportation of goods along the NSR has grown 1000 times over the past 10 years. Here are two main reasons for that. The first is also global warming. The speed of global warming in the Arctic is 3 times higher than in other regions. It leads to a significant increase in navigation time. The second reason is the length of the NSR, it is 1/3 shorter than the route through the Suez Canal. A shorter route leads to lower financial costs and CO2 emissions.

The objective of this paper was to analyze the context in which people in the Arctic live on a permanent basis. Limits of research are the port cities of the Arctic, since due to the development of NSR they have a greater potential for development. One of the cities turned out to be special in its characteristics and it was chosen as a city for key study. As a result of collecting information in the city and the formulation of the key problems of life in the Arctic housing issue was identified as the most important. The thesis aimed to develop a set of typological solutions that can improve the living environment and can be applied in other cities in the Arctic.
Text von Polina Svetlitskaya.