AbstractEvery regional center aspires to become (or at least to be called) a capital. Irkutsk is proud of being once
an administrative center of a big governorate, which included Alaska. Krasnoyarsk has become a millionaire and now is competing with Novosibirsk for the title of the capital of Siberia. European cities annually compete for the status of cultural capital, youth capital, etc.
Why is the capital status so attractive? It is obvious that Irkutsk is not Moscow, they have different possibilities, and their different budgets lead to different ways of achievement of common goals: to create a comfortable environment and to provide an appropriate quality of life. The main difference is that the decisions made in the capital set models and standards for all non-metropolitan cities.
Sometimes standardization based on metropolitan models become unreasonable or too undifferentiated.
Where are those climatic regions and subregions elaborated for construction rules and regulations by the regulatory structure of the USSR? Being located in the eleven time zones, from the subtropics to the Arctic, in seismically active zones and on anthropogenic soils, on the shores of three oceans, across deserts and mountain ranges, doesn’t Russia need them?
Non-metropolitan practices in architecture, town-planning and the state of life can only “mitigate” the equalitarian impact caused by the capital. What forms and what ideological contents do these practices have all over our multinational and multiconfessional country? How can non-metropolitan architects make their cities healthier, more comfortable and more attractive for the growing human capital assets in the competitive battle against the capital and against each other? As usual, the issue of our journal is full of vital and urgent questions.
quality of life; non-petropolitan cities; architecture; town-planning
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