Khrushchyovka (Russian: хрущёвка,
IPA: [xrʊˈɕːɵfkə]) is an unofficial name of type of
low-cost, concrete-paneled or brick three- to five-storied apartment
building which was developed in the
Soviet Union during the early
1960s, during the time its namesake
Nikita Khrushchev directed the
Soviet government. The apartment buildings also went by the name of
"Khruschoba" (Хрущёв+трущоба, Khrushchev-slum).
3 Present day
4 See also
6 External links
Traditional masonry is labor-intensive; individual projects were slow
and not scalable to the needs of overcrowded cities. To ameliorate a
severe housing shortage, during 1947–1951 Soviet architects
evaluated various technologies attempting to reduce costs and
completion time. During January 1951 an architects' convention,
supervised by Khrushchev (then the party director of Moscow), declared
low-cost, quick technologies the objective of Soviet architects.
Two concrete plants were later established in
1953; Khoroshevsky, 1954). By this time, competing experimental
designs were tested by real-life construction, and prefabricated
concrete panels were considered superior. Other possibilities, like in
situ concrete, or encouraging individual low-rise construction, were
During 1954–1961, engineer Vitaly Lagutenko, chief planner of Moscow
since 1956, designed and tested the mass-scale, industrialized
construction process, relying on concrete panel plants and a quick
assembly schedule. During 1961, Lagutenko's institute released the K-7
design of a prefabricated 5-story building that became typical of the
Khrushchyovka. 64,000 units (3,000,000 m2 (32,000,000 sq ft)) of this
type were built in
Moscow from 1961 to 1968.
In Moscow, space limitations forced a switch to 9 or 12-story
buildings; the last 5-story Khrushyovka was completed there during
1971. The rest of the USSR continued building Khrushyovkas until the
end of socialism; millions of such units are now past their design
Khrushchyovka design represented an early attempt at
industrialised and prefabricated building, with elements (or panels)
made at concrete plants and trucked to sites as needed. Planners
regarded elevators as too costly and as too time-consuming to build,
and Soviet health/safety standards specified five stories as the
maximum height of a building without an elevator. Thus almost all
Khrushyovkas have five stories.
Khrushchyovkas featured combined bathrooms. They had been introduced
with Ivan Zholtovsky's prize-winning Bolshaya Kaluzhskaya building,
but Lagutenko continued the space-saving idea, replacing regular-sized
bathtubs with 120 cm (4 ft) long "sitting baths". Completed bathroom
cubicles, assembled at a Khoroshevsky plant, were trucked to the site;
construction crews would lower them in place and connect the piping.
Some theorists even considered combining toilet-bowl functions with
the shower's sink, but the idea was discarded. Kitchens were small,
usually 6 m2 (65 sq ft). This was also common for many non-élite
class Stalinist houses, some of which had dedicated dining rooms.
Typical apartments of the K-7 series have a total area of 30 m2 (323
sq ft) (one-room), 44 m2 (474 sq ft) (two-room) and 60 m2 (646 sq ft)
(three-room). Later designs further reduced these meager areas. Rooms
of K-7 are "isolated", in the sense that they all connect to a small
entrance hall, not to each other. Later designs (П-35, et al.)
disposed with this "redundancy": residents had to pass through the
living room to reach the bedroom. These apartments were planned for
small families, but in reality it was not unusual for three
generations of people to live together in two-room apartments. Some
apartments had a "luxurious" storage room. In practice, it often
served as another bedroom, without windows or ventilation.
Khrushchyovka yard in Kazan.
The panel buildings called 'Khrushchyovka' are found in great numbers
all over the former Soviet Union. They were originally considered to
be temporary housing until the housing shortage could be alleviated by
mature Communism, which would not have any shortages. Khrushchev
predicted the achievement of
Communism in 20 years (by the 1980s).
Leonid Brezhnev promised each family an apartment "with a
separate room for each person plus one room extra", but many people
continue to live in Khrushchyovkas today.
Khrushchyovka standard types are classified into "disposable", with a
planned 25-year life (сносимые серии) and "permanent"
(несносимые серии). This distinction is important in
Moscow and other affluent cities, where disposable Khrushchyovkas are
being demolished to make way for new, higher-density construction. The
Moscow had planned to complete this process by 2015. More than
1,300 out of around 1,700 buildings have been already demolished as of
2012. Less wealthy communities will rely on the aging Khrushchyovka
stock indefinitely.
Urban planning in communist countries
^ http://realty.lenta.ru/news/2012/12/11/xrywevki/[dead link]
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Khrushchev houses.
The Khrushchovkas – The Ukrainian Observer
Soviet-Era Housing Gets New Lease of Life – The St. Petersburg Times
Panel buildings by country
Czech and Slovak republics: Panelák
WHH GT 18
Mongolia: Ugsarmal bair
Russia: Panelny dom
Serbian: Блок (Blokovi)