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The spiraling 246m high Evolution Tower is located on plots 2-3 of Moscow-City high-rise business district on Presnenskaya Embankment of Moscow river. New multi-function center occupies the territory of 2.5ha in area, 2ha of which is a landscaped terraced civic plaza, the integral part of the new city piazza, the central open public space of Moscow-City business downtown.

ivic plaza includes 10m high ceremonial stairs (leading from embankment and pedestrian Bagration Bridge to the higher terraced levels) as well as landscaped areas with green lawns, trees, water features, travellators and feature lightboxes.

Evolution Tower

Location: Moscow, Russia

Typology: High-Rise, Office, Mixed-Use

Years: Construction 2011-2014

Status: Built

Height: 246m

Design team: GORPROJECT (2011-2015), 

RMJM Scotland Ltd 

(original concept 2005-2007)

Under the piazza levels the 2-storey retail mall connects the Evolution Tower with metro station and pedestrian bridge over Moscow river, thus integrating the new development into the large Moscow-City district, the Europe's newest and most ambitious high-rise cluster (7 of 10 highest European skyscrapers ae located here), housing over 4 million square meters of office and retail areas with associated transport and engineering infrastructure.   

The Evolution Gallery mall houses food court and 6,000m2 family entertainment and educational center for various children activities (the first center of that kind in Moscow). 

The 82,000m2 office tower has 52 levels rotated 3 degrees each floor with overall twist reaching 156 degrees clockwise. With world’s largest innovative cold-bent glazing the tower façade provides seamless floating reflection that rotates the panoramas of Moscow skyline vertically, where the reflected clouds moving up enhance the dynamic visual impact of the twisted tower, an unprecedented optical effect in the world architecture.  The Crown with supporting steel structure made of two twisted arches provides the helipad at the very top as well as the open observation roof decks at Levels 51-52 featuring the best panoramas of Moscow riverside with views towards the historical center. 

From the very beginning the developer and architects have set an ambitious task to create a recognizable and symbolic tower, the new icon of contemporary Moscow.  The sculptural DNA-shaped twisting tower symbolizes the evolution spiral with the white façade ribbon wrapping over the roof in a form of 90-degree twisted infinity symbol, which speaks of philosophical concept of evolution and celebrates the development of human civilization. From spiraling onion domes of St. Basil to the iconic Tatlin Tower concept the Russian architecture was obsessed with idea of spiral. The simple and innovative design was based on principles of twisting square-shaped floor plates with vertical structural RC frame supported by a central core and 8 columns with continuous beams and 4 spiraling columns at the corners. 

The proposed structural scheme with cantilevered continuous RC beams and cantilevered floor slabs  picking up the overhangs from the twisted floor plates appeared to be simple, efficient and economical. The complex sculptural tower façade envelope was built using the innovative cold-bent glazing with flat double glazed units cold-formed in 3D within the aluminum frame under its own weight to avoid stepping in geometry. This approach appeared to be both more energy-efficient and more cost-efficient solution in comparison to the stepped curtain wall units previously applied in some twisted unitized facades. 

The multifunctional architectural glass by Guardian significantly reduces the solar gain whilst providing the double glazed unit thermal performance equal to standard triple glazed unit normally used in Moscow to withstand harsh winter conditions. The use of innovative TWIN elevators by ThyssenKrupp saved 2 shafts within the core (10 TWINs instead of 12 double-deckers in the original concept) and contributed to the overall project sustainability with lesser power consumption per passenger. Other sustainable design features include green roofs over the retail mall and integrated coil floor heating under landscaped civic piazza levels using the return water in winter to melt the snow and ice for the safety of pedestrians. The reinforced concrete formwork by PERI, including self-climbing ACS formwork specially designed for the twisting corner columns, allowed to achieve the impressive speed of RC frame construction of 6 days per floor due to perfect site logistics by Renaissance Construction as main contractor. 

All innovative design solutions and optimizations secured the delivery of this fairly unique skyscraper within the project plan and almost within the budget of the standard ‘benchmark’ high-rise building. This turned out to be a major achievement of the design and construction teams. 

The organic twisting silhouette dominates on its background of extruded glass towers greatly contributing into the overall composition of the high-rise Moscow-City cluster. The development delivered a significant open public space on the landscaped roof of the retail mall, thus providing the perfect mix of business uses with public and social activities of the civic plaza and the mall with its food court and core family entertainment function. The synergy of that mix with large underground car-park complemented by the direct link to the metro station and pedestrian bridge as means of main public transportation secured the successful project completion with the recent entire tower acquisition. Bold shape and timeless aesthetics as added values brought by its unique architecture materialized in a commercial success of this project with the tower being fully acquired for corporate headquarters even in the context of oversupply in the Moscow office market. The outstanding quality of architecture and its fine detailing, state of the art building services and communications of Class A office Tower together with the highest level of transport accessibility  (direct access to metro station from the lobby, large car-parking, proximity to boat pier and helipads) make this property very attractive for tenants and visitors. The beautiful riverside panoramas from offices are complemented by green roof and water features of the large 2ha terraced civic piazza as the main recreational outdoor space with direct link from the office tower lobby. 

The highest quality of façade cladding, glazing, vertical transportation and MEP equipment from leading European and international suppliers provided the truly Class-A office environment with the luxury of minimalist spirit in the architecture of the new landmark on the Moscow skyline. Even before its completion the sculptural spiral of Evolution Tower, more often appearing in commercials, posters and magazines, became a new icon for modern Moscow as the symbol of its business ambitions and fast development. The Evolution Tower also became the monument to the courage of its developer (Snegiri Group) and investors, who built the great deal of trust with architects, engineers and contractors by investing their efforts and funds in a challenging adventure of designing and building the unique and innovative skyscraper for the capital of Russia. 

Evolution Reflections

Evolution Reflections

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