“Explanatory notes on the OSA Team’s Project for the Socialist Settlement at Magnitogorsk Chemical and Metallurgical Combine” (1930)
From Sovremennaia arkhitektura, 1930 (no. 3, pg. 1)
A socialist settlement is not the old randomly developed accumulation of urban districts and barrack-like buildings, divorced from nature, connected to industry, whose monotony deprives the people of their vitality.
It is not the city having the monopoly on culture; it is not the city dividing rather than organizing people.
A socialist settlement is a properly thought out organization of industry and agriculture, culture and leisure: of everything that informs human consciousness and life. It is a settlement constructed on the basis of the foremost socialist technology.
Distribution schema of the city
The city is located between the industrial combine and a giant collective farm. The residential buildings, of timber and glass, are arranged on a chequerboard pattern, stretched out over 25 kilometers in a straight line. Each housing complex is intended for 250 people. It consists of eight separate housing units, each for 32 people. The children’s sector, which consists of crèches, kindergartens, playground, swimming pool, is located in the green zone between two residential complexes. Buildings for community use such as the stadium, sports facilities and also parks, zoological and botanical gardens, are located on both sides of the housing along the whole length of the city. On the very outside, alongside the city, run main highways for goods and passenger transport.
It is intended that transport and the household and cultural services for the population, should be socialized.
The dwelling environment is conceived not just as a kind of masonry luggage where thousands of people live along noisy corridors isolated from nature and deprived of light and individual leisure. It has been conceived as a means of organizing small collective communities in which one personality is not lost amongst a thousand others, but has the opportunity to develop to its full potential and to communicate with other people, first in its own small community, and then in progressively larger ones. Here dwellings are surrounded by gardens, sports grounds and swimming pools which dispense with the need to create rest homes outside the city. This is a complete habitat in which work, leisure, and culture are organically connected.
Organization of the residential unit
The residential unit comprises the following accommodation: sixteen small cabins, located in the corners on two floors. In the center of this unit there are two sanitary rooms with showers, a room for morning exercises and a room for collective leisure and cultural work.