The business center in St. Petersburg, the skyscraper erected by Gazprom, is called the Gazprom tower. Built in Lakhta, the historical part of the Primorsky district of St. Petersburg, the public and business complex is also called “Lakhta Center”.Here is the headquarters of the state concern “Gazprom” and its company. It is the tallest building in the northern capital and the second largest in Europe.
Lakhta Center is the tallest skyscraper in Europe
The customer and investor of the skyscraper project developed in 2011 by the British architectural bureau is Gazprom Neft. The general contractor is a Turkish company established in St. Petersburg in 1990 and established by Turkish businessmen.
A plot of 14 hectares for the construction of the tower was allotted in the north of St. Petersburg between the Gulf of Finland and Primorskoe highway. The distance from the skyscraper to the city center is 10 km. The tower, visible from all sides of the city, is perfectly visible from the sea. This is a kind of lighthouse for those arriving in the city by sea.
Construction started in 2012 and completed in October 2018. The task of the initiated project is to create a business center outside the city in order to rid the historical center of business activity and the dominance of transport. It is convenient and prestigious to work here.
During the construction of the skyscraper, unique technologies were used, applied for the first time in the world. Due to the proximity to the Gulf of Finland, the foundation of the complex rests on piles. 2080 piles at the base of the building, like the roots of a giant tree, go 82 m into the ground, 264 of them are 2 m in diameter.
Above the piles there is a 17 m high foundation box, which guarantees the stability of the building. When creating the box foundation, a record was set: according to the technology, 19625 cubic meters of high-strength concrete were poured non-stop in 49 hours. On the construction of the skyscraper, which took place in 247 mode, 6,500 people per shift worked in several shifts per day.
400,000 cubic meters of concrete, 22,000 tons of metal structures and 189,000 different parts were spent on the construction of the complex. Metal structures were manufactured at 12 factories, 10 of them are Russian. The team of Russian designers and engineers was complemented by Italians and Germans, Koreans and Serbs, Uzbeks and Tajiks.
Tower design features
The main element of the tower’s stability is a reinforced concrete core , inside which communications, vertical transport, technical rooms and security zones.
Along the perimeter of the tower there are 15 composite columns with a cruciform steel core, concreted with high-strength concrete. The resulting structure cannot even be blown up: in terms of strength, it surpasses the bunkers designed for atomic bombing.
The façade consists of 16505 glass modules made of aluminum profiles and cold-formed glass. Double-glazed windows, tested by water pressure, air currents and fire, are made using a film that does not allow the glass to break into fragments.
To protect against excess solar radiation, the glass, which has a thickness of 41 mm, is sprayed, which gives the surface of the tower a cool gray-blue tint. In the daytime, in the bright sun, the glasses are blue, in cloudy weather they are gray.
Figures and facts:
- The mass of glass on the facade is 13,000 tons, the glazing area is 72,500 sq. m, which is equal to the area of 20 football fields .
- The weight of the tower with infrastructure, glazing and furniture is 670,000 tons.
- The area of the complex’s facades is 242,000 sq. m.
- The height of the 87-storey building with a spire is 462 m.
- The spire weighing 2000 tons and a height of 117 meters is made of metal structures.
- The spire façade is lined with steel mesh to prevent icing.
State-of-the-art fire safety system: fire protection will withstand fire for 4 hours without changing the properties of concrete and steel. In case of a fire hazard, air is forced into the central core to prevent smoke. By going here on special escalators, people will be safe.
Gazprom tower architecture
The Lakhta Center complex consists of a skyscraper and a functional building, divided into the South and North blocks; the area of the complex is 400,000 square meters. m. The tower, presented in the form of a spire directed upwards, looks like a drop of water frozen in the air, flying towards the sky.
The architectural symbols of the Northern capital: the spiers of cathedrals and the endless sky are also reflected in the project of the complex. Emperor Peter I conceived St. Petersburg as a sea capital, and according to the authors of the project, the tower looks like a snow-white yacht from a distance from the sea.
The tower “twists” around its axis: each new floor base rotates by almost a degree relative to the core, so that the effect of twisting the building to the top is created. During the day, in bright light, the skyscraper seems to dissolve into thin air. Taking into account the shape of the building, the project provides for the uniqueness of each window; the size of the tower windows is not repeated. The project provides for architectural innovations in the tower – a modern planetarium and an open amphitheater.
On the ribs of the tower there is a system for washing windows moving along the rails , a special lift is designed so that the cradle with workers at a height is firmly fixed and does not swing at all during operation. Red obstruction lights are installed along the walls of the Lakhta Center, and a special “scare off” lighting protects the glass units from birds during a mass flight.
On the east side of the complex there is an arch-shaped entrance for office employees with a span of 100 meters. A unique illumination of 23,000 lighting fixtures and 500,000 LEDs unites the arch of the main entrance, the tower and the surrounding area.
On the southeast side there is an 8-kilometer pedestrian zone: bridge + space for mass festivities and celebrations. The northern part is reserved for exhibitions, there are railway platforms and a metro station. Near the tower there is a parking lot for tourist buses and a museum of the ship “Poltava”.
Objects of the complex “Lakhta Center”
There are 40 elevators in the building, which simultaneously transport 1280 people at a speed of 8ms. Waiting time for an elevator during peak hours is 30 seconds. Each elevator has its own elevator. The Gazprom tower complex includes:
- Offices covering an area of 300,000 sq. m, are located in the premises of the tower.
- Transforming auditorium for 494 people. The transformation system changes the space of both the hall and the stage in 10-20 minutes, depending on the format of the event.
- Scientific and educational center with an area of 7000 sq. m for master classes, seminars and lectures for a wide audience.
- Panoramic two-level restaurant at an altitude of 320 m with traditional Russian cuisine.
- Observation platform at an altitude of 360 m with telescopes equipped with an interactive map of St. Petersburg, which allows you to explore the historical part of the Northern capital and the Gulf of Finland. The webcam broadcasts a panorama of the Elagin Island, the Park named after the 300th anniversary of St. Petersburg and the Zenit Arena stadium.
- Sports complex with an area of 4.6 thousand square meters. m with gyms and gyms, a fitness center, massage rooms and swimming pools, health and relaxation centers.
- Medical multifunctional complex with an area of 2500 sq.m. with a medical and diagnostic department, it provides high-quality medical services to residents of the Primorsky district.
- Exhibition spaces.
- Open space for art objects and sculptures.
- Restaurants and cafes for 1500 seats on 5 levels of the building.
- Open amphitheater for 2000 people with an area of 1495 sq. m is facing the sea – a transition from a high roof to a water space, where shows on the water are performed, performances and competitions are arranged.
- Shopping areas are on the ground floor.
The complex has a planetarium for 140 people. It is located on the 5th floor of a multifunctional building adjacent to the tower. The architectural solution of the planetarium is unusual: the structure in the form of a huge ball, as if thrown on a grand scale and clinging to the facade, attracts the attention of everyone who is nearby. The outer diameter of the unusual structure is 19 m, the shell of the building is made of 1223 curved triangular sheets of polished stainless steel.
The sky is projected by a star machine using a Japanese projector. Modern special effects: moving floor, illusions of lightning and rain, virtual smoke and smells created by 10 laser projectors – enhance the impression during the sessions. A 16-meter domed screen on which a 3D projection of the solar system is displayed: guests participating in a space show can walk on the surface of Mars.
“Lakhta Center” – the symbol of St. Petersburg
In 2018, the Lakhta Center tower entered the top 10 best skyscrapers of the year. On June 28, 2019, an automatic weather station was installed at the highest point of the spire (462 m), which monitors temperature and humidity, wind direction and speed.
The antenna installed here reacts to the slightest deflections of the top of the building due to the wind. Lakhta Center is a laureate of a construction award in the field of engineering and geotechnical engineering of skyscraper facades. The deviation of the structure from the vertical along the entire height is 6 mm.