CIVIC ENGAGEMENT ON PERMAFROST
Evaluating Collaborative Architectural Making as a Tool for Provoking Civic Placemaking Initiatives in
Yakutsk, North-Eastern Siberia
The way in which the Yakutian settlements has expanded and developed through time, has been
affected by the continuous permafrost landscape and the extreme climate of the Subarctic, the
socio-cultural context of its indigenous people and the Russian incursion. Nowadays, the changing
socio-cultural context of Yakutia requires a new approach in civic place design to address the issues
of the place.
The research methodology includes: studies of the urban features and issues of Yakutsk and Lensk
cities, development of a map of tendencies and possibilities; the development of imaginative spatial
strategies for civic space design; studies of the history of participatory design in Yakutia; tests of the
findings through collaborative design and hands-on making case studies; analysis of the processes
and outcomes to evaluate the new approach.
The results of the research might lead to the evaluation of participatory placemaking as an urban
design tool and its potential impact in creating civic spaces in the Sakha Republic that can be further
used in the other regions of the Subarctic and places that experience Arctic climate conditions.